“None of us can be all things to all people.  Figure out what’s important in your life.  Don’t be afraid to pull back from the things that aren’t.”  Stuart R Levine

Do you ever feel overwhelmed with all you have committed to?  Is your kids’ schedule keeping you in constant taxi mode?

This is how our calendar looks most months.  I have meetings, commitments, sub dates, church obligations, Bible study, and book clubs.  We have family events.  Pat has church obligations and work appointments.  Then the kids….piano, dance, sports, band practice, and girl scouts.  Then, of course, all the other stuff that isn’t even on the calendar.  Sometimes, it is just too much.  But when I look at the list, there isn’t anything that I would really want to give up.  I chose all those things because they are important to me.  The kids love all of their activities and they are good at them.  So, how do you balance this calendar with….

this calendar.  This is boring.  If this was our life, I think we would go crazy.  The kids would be constantly saying, “I’m bored!”  I wouldn’t know what to do with all my free time.  Pat and I would probably be sick of each other. (Ok, maybe not) But, really, how do you balance the two?

As a family, you need to decide what is important.  As an individual, you need to look at how much you can really fit into a day/week.  You need to decide what is truly important.  My cousin, Melanie read the book 18 MINUTES: FIND YOUR FOCUS, MASTER DISTRACTION, AND GET THE RIGHT THINGS DONE by Peter Bregman,which I want to read too.  In it she said that Bregman that tells you to make five goals for yourself and then only commit to things that fit into those five goals.  There are lots of excellent authors out there that offer skills in time management, but, what they all really come right down to is committing yourself to only those things that you truly love.  Everything else can be dropped.  Follow through on your commitment and then don’t recommit.

One of my favorite self-checks came from THE ORGANIZED PARENT.  I keep this right on my fridge so I can see it when I go to my calendar.


Before U Say Yes

Ask yourself:

Am I saying yes because I would feel guilty if I said no?

Is my gut reaction, “How can I get out of this?”

Am I saying yes because I’m the mom who always says yes?

Am I saying yes only because my friends said yes?

Will saying yes bring stress to my family life?

When it’s done, will I just be glad that it’s over?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then reconsider saying yes to this particular request.  Remember it is OK to say NO.  Saying NO is saying YES to U.

As we come up to the close of the school year, consider your family’s schedule and look at what can be dropped (after you have followed through on your commitment) and what do you truly want to keep on your schedule.  Make lists about what is important, what are your goals for the summer, for the next school year, for the calendar year? If the commitment doesn’t fit, it doesn’t get a yes.

How do you manage your family’s commitments and schedules?  How do you decide what gets a “yes” and what gets a “no”?

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