Get up earlier than the kids
Minimalism is shifting your mindset from a negative-focus, me-focus or reward-focus approach to life. Those are things that every human struggles with, we are a very self-oriented group, so shifting the way our mind works takes intentional effort.
But, one of the easiest ways to combat that me-focused thinking is to wake up and have a little bit of breathing room before we are bombarded with needs and requests of our little charges.
Let's be real: it's not enjoyable to wake up to "Can you make me breakfast? What can I eat? Can I watch TV? Can you wash my clothes? Can you wipe my butt? Can I have a granola? How about an orange, a banana, an apple and some yogurt?"
I don't know about you, but if I wake up to that, I tend to be a really grumpy mama. So much so that I outlawed questions first thing: they must say "Good Morning" first.
You can skip all that drama if you simply get up before they do. Even if it's 5 minutes earlier: it will give you the opportunity to wake up slightly before you have to start meeting the needs of others.
I know sleep is precious, and as a mom, I don't feel like I ever get enough of it. But having just a few minutes of quiet before the kids come out means that I can meet them in the morning with a smile instead of stomping around the house thinking about how I always have to do everything for everybody.
Start a morning routine
I'm sure you've read this before, so many people talk about building routines into our lives. And they are right! Routines help streamline when you put them in place.
A morning routine means that the dishes are done, the counters are clean and the kitchen is ready for the next time you need to use it... all without thinking.
Our brains are wired to have habits take over, building a morning routine takes a lot of intentional effort in the beginning, but once it's established the entire morning process for you and your family is easier.
I recommend keeping the routine very simple, the more we expect and complicate things, the easier it will be to avoid it. Keep it stupid-simple. So simple that you have no logical reason to avoid doing it.
You can download my routine building PDF here:
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Work each day on editing possessions
Embracing minimalism is a process. Some people can let go of things quickly, or have a packing party like The Minimalists, but for those of us with a few kids and an involved spouse, it's more like peeling one layer off at a time. If you try to strip down too much at first, it will be difficult.
Having a morning routine helps in the editing process because it means that all the daily house-needs are already taken care of. You can't think "I shouldn't declutter-I still have to do the dishes." AND- this is big: having the simple jobs done; like the counters clean and the dishes washed, is motivating. When even a small part of the house is tidy, it motivates us to keep working at it.
Creating the home you want takes small regular steps. If your weekly schedule is so tight, start with taking a look at how you spend your time and if you are making your goals a priority.
- The Secret to Decluttering Your Schedule
- Decluttering The House (Even When The Children Are Running Around)
- How to Get the Kids On Board With Decluttering The Toys