A mom friend I have asked me to blog about my life hacks…and I have avoided the idea because I feel like my hacks are more random attacks on life, like hacking through a jungle with a macheti, than they are shortcuts and tricks.
I’m really not clever enough to invent hacks.
But I’ll try to think about what intentionally makes life easier. Thus, I begin “My Life Hacks: a Collection of How I Fake It ‘Til I Make It Confessions”.
Volume 1: 30 Seconds At A Time
If I had a nickel for every time I hear, “I don’t know how you do it!”, I would have a lot of nickles. My piggy bank would be full and I could cash it in for enough to buy me a one-time carpet cleaning. To answer, most of the time, I say “one day at a time,” or “by the grace of God” (which is exactly the only way), but I realized today that *when* I get “it all” done, it is mostly in small bursts of 30 second-5 minute intervals.
I do not kid.
You see, in 30 seconds, I can take out trash, load lunch dishes in the dishwasher, get meat out to thaw for dinner. All necessary, all so fast. It just requires my purposeful use of 30 seconds to do so, instead of (confession time) checking my phone for FB updates.
In one minute, I can wash a few pesky dishes by hand. Collect laundry. Fluff and straighten pillows. Put away mail. Adjust my messy bun. Maybe even brush my hair first and do a tidy bun! (<<This always makes my girls happy. They aren’t fans of the messy top-knot look.)
In two minutes, instead of rolling my eyes at insulting political memes on FB, I can log off and brush my teeth. Chase my toddler and start a tickle fight. Switch the laundry. Peel carrots, cut apples, slice cheese for snacks. Quiz my girls on their poetry. Wipe down the kitchen counters.
In three minutes, I can read a short board book, start a blog post, reply to an email, schedule an appointment.
Give me 5 minutes? Hot dog, I can look like a grown woman who leaves the house on occasion! Five minutes is enough to put away odds and ends, read another book, start a board game, review vocabulary, ask for a narration about a history or science lesson, get ready for a walk, pray a decade of the Rosary, read the daily Mass readings, or journal a quick prayer.
It’s so simple, right? It’s being intentional with small chunks of time that is the trick.
The other, life-changing, secret tip? I don’t get it all done. I accept that I live in a bustling home with 7 other humans, and “getting it all done” makes no sense. This is a loud, messy life. Children are growing up in my home. We make meals. Do laundry (constantly). Share time with family and friends. We live. Instead of stressing about a sparkling house with all the laundry folded, I work on getting the most important things done (meals, tidy kitchen, family prayer time). After that, relationships and homeschooling and getting to school on time. Following all that, we all pitch in and most days, “get it all done” equals “enough is done well”.
So there’s my great fake hack. I simply accept that I don’t get it all done.