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Lots of tasks fight for our attention every day. We can’t do it all. In light of that reality, we have to start setting priorities. But how do we decide what is or is not a priority?
Crystal Paine runs the well-known site Money Saving Mom. She is married, has three children, and runs a successful business. If anyone is busy, it would be Crystal. In 2014, she released a book called Say Goodbye to Survival Mode. She recommends taking the time to sit down and figure out what your priorities are, and then to spend your energy on things that support those priorities.
My list went like this:
- Following God and growing as a Christian
- Being a good wife
- Being a good mother
- Being a good steward of my home
It’s a pretty standard list. After I wrote it, I realized that to evaluate how well I was doing in these areas, I would have to dig deeper. Sure, I said I wanted to grow in my faith, but what specific things was I doing to work towards that?
After giving it some thought, I wrote out specific action items under each priority.
Following God and growing as a Christian
- Read 4 chapters of the Bible each morning
- Pray for God to help me overcome my sins
- Volunteer with a ministry at church
- Choose Christ-centered books as a part of my reading challenge
Being a good wife
- Wake up with my husband each day and spend time with him before he goes to work
- Speak honoring words about my husband to others
Being a good mother
- Pray for my son every day
- Read to him every day
Being a good steward of my home
- Keep working on cleaning routines
- Cook healthy meals
- Work on creating great content and reaching more women who need encouragement
Goals are good, but they are worthless without action. I decided to write out a sample schedule of a typical day to see what areas take up most of my time. If something that’s a lower priority is taking up a disproportionate amount of time, then that needs to change.
After I wrote out my typical day, I color coded each task by category (faith, marriage, motherhood, homemaking, blogging/other).
My schedule should reflect my priorities. I enjoy blogging, but it’s not as important as taking care of my son. I typically work on writing from 6:15-7:00 and then again for an hour during my son’s nap. I try not to work on it while he’s awake.The bulk of my time is going towards taking care of my son and taking care of my home, which makes sense for this season of my life. After I looked at my standard day, I decided that I want to focus on spending more time doing family activities in the evenings.
What are your priorities? How are they reflected in your daily tasks?