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Let’s be real, ladies. ‘Momming’ is hard! Mom life is arguably one of the most challenging, yet rewarding jobs under the sun. Most of the time it’s thankless, often in our busy culture it's hurried, and sometimes it’s downright defeating.
The good news is that it’s totally worth it! Just think, you’re raising up the next generation. Your child could someday make a real impact in the world around them. However, while raising up the next president or astronaut or doctor or teacher––a few tips on saving time would probably be helpful.
After all, the more time you can save on the ‘have to dos’ means the more time you’ll be able to spend on the ‘want to dos’ and ‘get to dos’. With that in mind, keep reading for some of our best busy mom life hacks we at Honest® could think of.
Maintain an Ongoing Shopping List
To avoid last minute grocery runs and wasting time trying to remember everything you need so you can write down on your grocery list, try keeping an ongoing grocery shopping list instead.
Hang it on the fridge, write it down in a planner, or use a grocery shopping app, but keep a running list so you can just glance at it and see what you need to replenish. Note down everything that you need more of right away to avoid the risk of forgetting it.
Assign ‘In-Use’ Cups for Everyone
With little ones, the amount of glasses, cups, plates and bowls that get used during the day can quickly add up. Although some things are just unavoidable, for cups and glasses, we’ve got a trick for you! Assign ‘in-use’ glasses or cups to everyone in the house, and keep them in a designated place. You can also color-code the glasses to engage your kids.
Cook Two Servings of Every Meal
Family life means cooking, a lot of cooking. Doubling up your recipes and cooking enough for two family servings at one time can save so much time and energy. You can freeze half of whatever you’ve cooked and unthaw it for use later in the week.
Even if you don’t make and save the same exact dish, you can at least cook the basic ingredients, such as meat or veggies that can then be used for other things whenever required.
Put Everything in its Place Right Away
Instead of leaving things around for sorting later, get to it right away. The biggest help in this regard is to have designated places for everything in the house. When you know where something needs to go, you can put it there immediately without wasting time. Similarly, when you need something, you’ll know exactly where it is, and can get to it quickly and easily.
Shopping online saves a lot of travel time! Not to mention how much you save on gas and your precious energy. Nowadays, everything is available online, be it groceries or clothes. However, there’s a dark side to online shopping. It can turn into a rabbit hole that ends up gobbling up hours of your time if you’re not careful.
Soak Dishes Before Rinsing
Love home cleaning hacks? Instead of scrubbing food bits off of your plates and dishes, let them soak in the sink while you do other things. If they’re in the sink, they’ll catch any water from the faucet, which helps soften up the food leftovers. Another timesaver is to rinse off any food right away and then stack the dirty dishes together for washing later on.
Always Carry Around a Snack
Kids can get hungry at any time, often unpredictably, and they will definitely get hungry or thirsty while you’re out and about doing errands. To save time, keep a snack in your purse, both for yourself and the kids. This is one of our favorite mom hacks, and it will save you the hassle of going through a drive-through or hitting a store for snacks while you’re on the road. It’s also a great idea to always keep a bottle of water on hand.
Make a Routine
On days where your brain just isn’t up to the task of being a mom, you’ll thank yourself later for creating a set routine that allows you to operate on autopilot. It spares you time wasted as you sit around deciding what to do next.
Additionally, when you design a daily routine, you can then assign a fixed amount of time to certain tasks, and fine tune those time frames as you go to maximize your efficiency.
Meal Prep and Planning
Meal planning and prepping beforehand can save so much time and money for you. The first benefit is that you won’t have to think about what to cook everyday. Instead, you can plan meals for the whole week in one sitting.
Once you know what you’ll be cooking during the week, you can shop the grocery store for everything together––saving time again. Finally, cooking or prepping food in big batches actually takes up less time than cooking in separate single batches. Bonus points––it’ll also help keep your budget and diet in check.
Keep a Donation Box Handy
Keep a donation box in your house, in an easily accessible place. Whenever you come across a thing that’s of no use to you any longer, drop it in the box. That way instead of making a separate task of sorting out things for donation and then making a separate trip to give them away, it’s already separated and you can just take the box with you to a donation center on your next errand trip.
Get Everyone Involved and Delegate Chores
Once the kids are old enough, you can start delegating tasks to them. This stage of motherhood helps make up for all of the new mom chores you once endured. Not only does doing this make your kids feel older and feel good about themselves, it will also go a long way in helping them grow into independent and responsible young humans.
Additionally, when the whole family is involved in household chores, it can strengthen your family bond. You can allow your kids to dress themselves, sort their dirty clothes, clean out their play areas by themselves, help with dishes, help with lawn care, take out the trash, feed and water the pets, and anything else that is age-appropriate and helpful. If you elect to let your kids help with chores, make sure they stay away from any cleaning solutions that are not natural. Read our blog post about why parabens are bad for more details.
By the way, while you are teaching your kids how to clean their own space, teach them how to properly care for themselves at the same time! Check out our blog post all about self care for teens for more information!
Whether it’s your food and groceries, or any other thing in your life, planning ahead is truly the way to go. When you plan ahead, you mentally prepare yourself for the tasks to come, plus reduce risks of any confusion later on.
Gathering your kid’s school supplies the night before, preparing their lunches, packing their bags, and readying your own clothes for the next day are all expert parenting hacks that you can do ahead of time to help your next day run smoothly. By doing things the night before, you’re fully prepared to tackle your morning.
Keep Track of Your Screen Time
Social media apps––and smart phones in general––are addictive tech tools and can take up a lot of your time during the day, without you even realizing just how much. It’s not enough to just track the screen time for your kids––you need to be conscious of yours as well.
Yes, selfcare and ‘me-time’ is absolutely essential, but always make sure you’re making a conscious decision on how you’re spending your spare time, rather than letting it happen and scrolling mindlessly. An excellent way of controlling screen time for both you and your kids is to use timers and give each of you an allocated period of time that you’re allowed to use technology.
Keep a Running To-Do List
When you’re planning ahead, you already know what you need to do. What’s left is to plan when you’ll do those required tasks. This is where a to-do list comes in handy. Update it continuously and make sure you’re allocating your precious time to the things in your life that are actually important and useful.
Autopay Your Bills
Instead of logging into every billing app separately, why not use one designated app to pay all your bills in one place? Depending on the app you use, you can even set it to autopay to save time and avoid having to do the same task again every month.
Listen, we get it! Life can be so busy, especially in today’s modern world. It feels like everything moves so fast sometimes, it’s like you’re treading water just to keep up.
That’s why it’s so important to design the life you love intentionally, and use every trick in the book to help you save time and streamline your daily routines. That way you’ve got more time freed up for the things that truly matter, with less time spent just ‘making it through the day’. We sincerely hope every mom hack and time saving tip we shared is helpful!