Success comes with hard work and there will never be a time where you don’t have your kids or you’re thinking about them. I’ve compiled a list of the top ten ways that you as a parent (single or not) can still be a successful human being, or entrepreneur, and STILL have all the time in the world to spend with your kids. Just follow these tips, as hard as it may be, and make an active decision to incorporate your kids into some of your activities even if they aren’t physically there. As a single mom, I know how hard it can get and how seemingly impossible great success is, but it doesn’t have to be that way and it isn’t!
1. Wake Up At The Same Time Every Day
When you give yourself a routine it becomes second nature and allows you to get everything you need done within the day it needs to be completed. Waking up at 6 am every day for example, means that you’re not giving time the upper hand, and it also allows you to spend MORE time with your kids while instilling good behaviors as well. Laziness does not make for great success!
2. Keep a “To-Do” List
Many of us find ourselves at the end of the day wishing we had more hours to work with or that we had accomplished more. Keeping a to-do list will allow you to prioritize the important things and get those done by end of day AND leave you feeling accomplished.
Example: Go buy diapers
Meet up for play date @ 3
Create and complete Marketing spreadsheet
Never give your self any more than FIVE items to completely achieve within a day. Why? Because overwhelming yourself distracts you from the little one crawling around your feet begging you to play! With a to-do list you’ll have time to take those breaks, and you won’t feel as though you’re sacrificing that time with your kids. If you happen to not get everything done, don’t beat yourself up about it, there’s always tomorrow!
3. Tell Guilt to Take a Hike
Allowing us to feel guilty all the time brings our self-esteem down, and brings up that concept of mental health. Guilt is a terrible rain cloud that sits overhead and never leaves you until you break out that flashlight and make it go away. Don’t forget that; Guilt doesn’t go away on its own; you have to force it to vanish.
Guilt goes the other way too. Try your hardest to make others not feel guilty for actions they take, mistakes the make, or hearts they break. Be encouraging to others, and your kids. If they accidently break that 100-year-old vase it’s okay to be upset but conceal, don’t feel, and show your kids it’s okay to make mistakes. Mistakes are what keeps life spicy and what allows us to learn.
4. Write 3-5 Different Things You are Thankful for in a Journal, Everyday
It can be as simple as “I’m thankful I was able to drag myself out of bed today,” or “I’m glad my son didn’t wet the bed last night.” It really doesn’t matter what you write down so long as it’s POSITIVE. Positivity is the key to one’s happiness. Why? Let’s just put it this way, do you really want to walk around feeling like emotional garbage all the time? No. So be happy, be thankful, and write it down!
5. Keep a Healthy Lifestyle
Being healthy encompasses many things like physical health, mental health, my kids’ health, my relationships’ health, and so on. Making sure that the relationships you have with other people in your life are healthy ones, and ones that will continue to grow AND make you grow, are good ones. Keeping your physical health up is pertinent to being a parent! You can’t very well run around the yard for an hour chasing your kids if you’re completely out of shape or ill. My suggestion is to have a workout routine, even if you involve your kids (it will just bring your relationship with them closer, and…oh hey healthier)!
Check yourself before you wreck yourself. As cliché as it sounds, it’s completely true! In order for everything in your life to run smoothly (as smoothly as it can be) you need to be in a healthy state of mind. If you’re angry or depressed, you’ll make everyone feel that way around you or no one will want to be near you. With that said, don’t forget to take time to yourself. Being close and interactive with your family is important, but taking care of you and your needs is even more important (you’re allowed to be a little selfish)!
6. Surround Yourself With Successful People
It’s really a simple concept. You’re friends and family are happy and successful, you probably will be too. But, if you’re friends are all deadbeat dads (coughs LOUD), or financially destroyed (by their own doing), or even just big old losers, the chance is that you probably will be to. Choose your friends wisely.
7. Use a Calendar
Just use one. Honestly, it helps and if you hang it in your kitchen where you always grab food, you’ll stay on top of the ball and you won’t forget when your kids have a party or play date.
8. Take Smart Risks
It’s a complete lie when people tell you not to be risky. How did anyone ever create anything new without taking a risk? It’s simple, they didn’t. Taking risks may seem like a scary thing at first, but once you get yourself into the habit (there’s that word again) of taking risks it will become a second nature to you. Don’t be afraid, be daring and jump into the lion’s den!
This is yet another life skill that kids need to be taught. Of course there are yes’s and no’s to this, but that’s where parenting comes into play and we must teach our children to understand what’s a smart behavior and what isn’t.
9. Share Your Dreams & Aspirations
You never know whom you could be connected to! Sharing your dreams, what you’d like to achieve, and what you’re working on with everyone around you will constantly keep your story flowing and make you buzz worthy (so long as people are interested). That doesn’t mean you have to exclude your kids, people LOVE to hear about children and how you fit your dreams in around them.
Just the other day I was speaking with someone from my church about how I’d love to be working with Mesa Arts Center one day, and he happens to know the director of the Arts at MAC, AND he’s putting in a good word with him.
FACT: You never know whom you’re going to be connected with – ALWAYS tell your story.
10. Experience Life. Be Spontaneous!
If we don’t stop to look at our child experience a new food, or take a five-mile out-of-the-way detour to look at some magnificent rock, we aren’t living. This world is filled with so very many interesting and innovative things that we as adults, children, and people of the world should not be missing out on. Take the time to take a last minute trip to Disneyland or go out and have a picnic. Your kids will thank you when they’re older, and you will be thanking yourself constantly for the stimulation.
How do you stay on top of your life and family?