The Truth About Time Management: Sorry Moms, It Doesn’t Exist
Here’s how I rock time management: Wake-up, breastfeed the baby, change the baby’s pamper, brush the baby’s teeth, take care of my personal hygiene needs, make the bed, dress the baby, get dressed, feed the baby breakfast, feed myself breakfast, change the baby, clean the kitchen, engage the baby in an academic activity, read emails, create a priority to do list, check in with husband, check in with business partners, prep business activities for the day, bathroom break, breastfeed the baby, put the baby down for a nap, begin business activities for the day, prep lunch, baby wakes up from nap, change the baby, feed the baby lunch, eat lunch, prep dinner, change the baby, breastfeed the baby, bathroom break, engage the baby in an afternoon play activity, continue to work on business tasks for the day, put the baby down for a nap, take a transition break, baby wakes up from nap, change the baby, give the baby snack and breastfeed, cook dinner, welcome husband home from work, feed baby dinner, eat dinner, breastfeed baby, quality time with husband and baby, husband puts baby to bed, husband cleans kitchen, wife ends the day writing, reading, studying, or all of the above before retiring to bed …
Yes, this gigantic run on sentence is my life. I could really lose my mind thinking about the outstanding to do list being a work from home married mother, student, and businesswoman affords me. But I have not had a melt down in a really long time, circa three-to-six months. No, I am not super woman. I, also, do not believe in the delusional stress inducing methodology called multi-tasking anymore. As Arianna Huffington put it best, “There is no such thing as multitasking. It’s actually task switching and it’s been proven to be highly ineffective.”
So how do I use time management to get through my days without having to admit myself to the ER for severe anxiety? 1.) Lots of prayer 2.) I love what I do and 3.) There is no more time. Yes, I said that, I believe that, and I have been practicing it since I decided I wanted to keep my sanity. There is no more time.
Yesterday does not exist. I can’t get it back, I don’t want to go back, it is over. Tomorrow, I know all to well, is not promised. All I have is today, and I don’t even have today. I have this moment right now, because only God knows what will happen next. So every day I wake-up, I feel the sun on my face, I smile at my baby girl, and I say thank you God for this morning. Then, I proceed to do whatever needs to be done in that moment only. I’ve come this far by faith.
Now you may be like, what? What is she talking about? Who does that? Of course there is still time.
Listen, I use to be the biggest planner. By the time I graduated college, I had a timeline for the rest of my life that even included what year I wanted God to take me back. Yes, I even planned my death. But you know that saying; “we plan and God laughs?” Well, the universe has hit me over the head with that so much so that I’m sure it’s etched in my scalp.
If you asked me four years ago where I would be today, I would have told you in a colonial house on the Main Line of Philadelphia, with two kids, and a very lucrative law career. I never anticipated not liking corporate finance, wanting to be an entrepreneur, missing my art as a writer, or the tragic unforeseen deaths of several members of my family including my own infant son. The only plan that stands true today is the commitment of matrimony my husband and I vowed on October 22, 2011. And let me be the first to say that even that is a miracle and a testimony and a covering from the divine after all we’ve been through.
But I’m grateful, because living one-step at a time and leaving room for God’s plans to take over my life has afforded me the most precious gifts in this world, love and passion. My daughter is a constant reminder that I don’t have it all figured out and I should be glad. I never imagined her, I could not give her to myself, and I can’t control her. All I can do is be present and available to love her and build trust with her so that she trusts me as a reliable source of guidance. This requires my undivided attention, and I cannot give my undivided attention to anything if I’m worried about everything that has nothing to do with the here and now.
So, the Mom in Me does not plan. The Mom in Me knows that time does not exist.
Instead of having a plan, The Mom in Me has a vision, and every moment of my life is spent seizing the opportunities of the moment to manifest that vision. When it’s time to eat, I eat. When it’s time to sleep, I sleep. When it’s time to work, pay a bill, kiss my husband, love on my daughter, write a piece, read a book, take a bath, I do those things.
The less time I spend planning to live my life the more effective I’ve noticed I am at actually living my life with passion, peace, and purpose.
What should you be doing right now? Remember, there is no more time.
Clarissa Joan is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of the inspirational website, The Clarissa Joan Experience, where she shares her personal truths to promote a culture of peace, passion, and purpose throughout humanity.