Normally, when you hear the term “spring clean,” you think of cleaning your home. Scrubbing the floors, deep cleaning the carpet, going through kids’ clothes, pulling weeds, and putting away winter blankets. Spring inspires us to brighten our homes and inspire hope into our homes as well. Flowers grace our homes, bright colors splash against our couches, and the hope of new life blossoms as life grows outside.
What if we could spring clean our daily routine just like we spring clean our homes? What if we as moms could challenge ourselves in this growing season to clean out the old and plant new seeds in our homes? Seeds of peace. Seeds of joy. Seeds of adventure.
As moms, we are leaders in our families. We influence and set the culture – the soil – for our children to grow into young men and women of society. Our daily routines contribute to the atmosphere and culture of our homes. What we do every day reflects our priorities and shows our kids how to live life to the fullest.
When Jennifer from Teach, Workout, Love asked me if I wanted to write a guest post for her, I was ecstatic! Especially when she said the topic was Spring Tips for Moms. I immediately started planning how to best help moms this spring.
This spring, don’t only spring clean your home, but spring clean your daily routine like a mom boss!
Below are 10 tips to spring clean your daily routine to be more productive, present, and create the home you want your children to grow-up in.
P. S. There’s an awesome time blocking free printable at the end. The printable allows you to track how you’re currently spending your time and helps you re-structure your daily routine! I would love for you to subscribe to my blog, Simplified Motherhood, and grab it!
The first step in moving forward is to look at where you have come from. Just like you clean up the dust and dirt from winter, reflect on the last few months. Evaluate what habits have gotten dusty. Bring into the light goals that were previously set and see what progress you’ve made on them. Be honest with yourself about the culture of your home. Look in the areas of relationships, budget, cleaning, fitness, and work/life balance. Is the relationship between you and your husband where you want it to be? Are you staying within budget so far this year? Ask yourself these questions.
To do: Write 20 minutes in a journal or start a Word document on your computer about the past several months. Look at relationships, culture, and how things feel around the house. What’s working with your family schedule? What’s causing frustration? A certain time of day? Or a certain day of the week? Identify those feelings and write it all down.
2. Check-in On Goals
If you are a goal-setter at the New Year or if you made New Year’s resolutions, take out your list and look at it. Bring out a new piece of paper and set-it beside the other one. Transcribe your goals to the new paper and re-write it with some pretty spring colors. Evaluate each goal individually. Only write down the goals that you still want to commit to. Cross-off the ones that you know aren’t a priority any more. Don’t carry around extra baggage on your goal list! Declutter your list so that you can focus on what’s important!
To do: Download this free goal’s worksheet to help you narrow down your commitments and restate your goals in a way that you want to and are able to meet them!
3. Track Your Day-to-Day Schedule
Do you ever wonder where the day went? You sit down after putting the kids to bed, and you feel like you “didn’t get anything done.” I have experienced this SO many times. I’m often frustrated and exhausted and unmotivated to work towards goals when this happens. What if you could change that though? What if you could feel satisfied with the work you put-in each day? The first step towards that satisfaction is tracking where your time is going NOW.
To do: For one week track what you do each hour of the day and write it down on a piece of paper.
When do you normally wake-up? What do you do for the first hour of the day? Clean, cook, watch TV, go on Facebook? When are you working out? When are you spending time with your kids? With your husband? With your friends? When do you go to the store or shop online or surf Pinterest? When is your most productive time of day? Write it all down for a week from when you wake-up to when you go to bed. I promise it will be EYE OPENING.
4. Recommit to Priorities
Now that you’ve reflected on the past few months and checked-in on your goals, the next step is to recommit. Recommit by posting your goals on social media. Share your goals with a close friend who can hold you accountable. Make joint goals with your spouse so you can work on them together. Put your pretty goals up on your mirror so you and see them every day and be inspired. Say to yourself, that you are committing to grow and learn in this new spring season.
To do: Write down three things you want to commit to. Post your commitments around your house where you will see them everyday. Use these powerful words, “I commit to…” and fill in the blank. Examples might be, “I commit to set an example of grace in my home.” Or another example might be, “I commit to providing a home my husband and kids love to be in.” Or finally, “I commit to being the best version of myself for my kids and husband.”
5. Get up earlier
Okay, you’re probably thinking, but I’m not a morning person! I would argue, stop making excuses, and start living again! Your kids wake-up early and that’s a FACT. This motherhood thing is just a season of life. And if you really want to clean-up your daily routine, then you need to start getting up before the kids. You will feel WAYYY better. Even if you just get up to have a quiet cup of coffee or tea and look at your to do list, you will feel a lot better about your day if you get up 30 minutes earlier than you are now. I actually talk about 3 Simple Steps for a More Productive Morning routine on my blog here, where I go way more into this subject!
To do: Try for one week. Get up 30 minutes earlier than you are right now. If you do this for a week, you’ll also find yourself going to bed a little earlier so that you get enough sleep. Try to do different things in the morning. Write down your to-do list, pray, go for a walk, do an at home work-out, or work on a project that you enjoy doing. Do something that will make you feel better about your day from right at the beginning! I’ll warn you that sometimes this is a hard transition and you might fall off-track. But you can always start again!
6. Do a digital detox
I’m guessing when you tracked what you were doing during the week that you realized how much time you were distracted by things that you might consider “unimportant.” While it is definitely good to relax and have self-care, some things give you more life than others. To spring clean your daily routine try cutting out Netflix or social media during the week. You would be amazed at what ways you find yourself relaxing instead. You could go for a walk, do yoga, read a book for fun or play board games with the family.
To do: Commit to no TV, tablets, or game playing for at least two weeks. You will find you stop craving it as much. Another option, commit to no social media during the day, or maybe no social media for one whole day per week. If you find yourself objecting to this even a little bit and making excuses, you NEED it. Clean out that social media and digital craving today!
7. Refocus on healthy eating
Most likely if you set goals at the beginning of the year, your health was one of them. Take the time to get you and your family back on track. There are many things you can do to clean up your health that don’t require too much additional time.
For example, everyone has to go grocery shopping. Take the time to meal plan for 15 minutes before you go to the grocery store. Not only will you be more focused at the store, but you will also be less likely to pick up random items. You could also try grocery shopping online to limit buying junk food or buying off budget.
Want another great idea? Commit to drinking half your weight in water every day in ounces. For example, if you weight 150 pounds, commit to drinking at least 75 ounces of water every day.
To do: Start-up meal planning again. Make sure to post the plan somewhere so your family can see it and hold you accountable to the meals you said you or your husband would make!
8. Start a fitness routine
Recommit to an exercise plan. Whether you are a Beachbody on Demand member, a member of your local recreation center, or just want to start doing yoga from YouTube in the morning. Add in time to work out at least three times per week for 30 minute intervals. Get an accountability partner that will hold you to it. Ask another mom friend to commit to working out on the same days so you can hold each other accountable. I’ve always been in the best shape, when I had someone to work out with! If you are a stay at home mom and your gym has childcare, meet a friend at the gym so you can get a workout in and get a little break from watching the kiddos.
Part of you being the best mom you can be, is feeling the best you can. Invest in your health this spring!
To do: Commit to a healthy lifestyle by committing to meet your exercise goals. Be specific on what type of exercises you’re going to do. For more inspiration on goal setting, especially fitness related, read How to Achieve Goals When You’re Ready to Quit.
9. Reevaluate your budget
It’s no secret that finances can be a huge stressor for a marriage and family. This spring, take the time to reevaluate your family budget with your spouse or significant other. If you don’t have a budget in place yet, try websites like Mint.com, You Need a Budget, or Every Dollar. These websites will help you track every dollar you spend. This will give you a picture of where your money is going, which helps you gain better perspective and have more confidence in decision making as a family. Spring cleaning your budget can clean out the unnecessary expenses and help you grow your wealth for fun activities like that summer beach vacation you are planning!
To do: Don’t forget to add yourself in to the budget! Build in a little leeway for you and your husband to have a little play money each month. Whether it’s $10, $25, or $50 a month, pick an amount that’s right for you and your family. My husband and I affectionately dub this amount “Marriage Insurance Premium.” When the budget is tight, having a little financial freedom can be enough to not completely blow the budget otherwise!
10. Let go of perfectionism
If you’re like me, you want to do the best for your kids, your husband, your friends, your co-workers, your boss – EVERYONE. You want a perfectly clean house, perfectly well-balanced meals, and the perfect body. Wouldn’t it be nice if it were that easy?
To spring clean your daily routine, let go of perfectionism. Perfectionism is probably getting in the way of you living a full and purposeful life. It probably gets in the way of you chasing dreams or starting something new.
Perfectionism shows up in being constantly busy and over-committed. Practice saying “no.”
Perfectionism shows up in not starting or completing projects because you’re afraid to fail.
Perfectionism shows up in not wanting to clean your house because it seems overwhelming to even start.
Give yourself some grace and forgive yourself when you make mistakes. Things happen. Take a risk and start something new because you will still gain something from it. It will not be perfect from the beginning, but that’s okay! It’s worth the cost to try.
To do: Look at your daily routine and ask yourself if there’s anything you are doing ONLY because you feel obligated to “be perfect.” Take it out of your schedule. Also, look at your daily routine and see if there’s time to “start something” that you’ve been afraid to start because perfectionism was getting in the way. Start it now!
My favorite quote that a professor gave me in college was from Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. He says,
“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative and creation, there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too.
All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents, meetings and material assistance which no man could have dreamed would have come his way.
Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now.”
Bonus Tip: Use Time Blocking to create a new Daily Routine that reflects your priorities
Ever heard of time blocking? This idea revolutionized and simplified my to-do list. It helped me clean up the clutter and focus on my priorities during the day. Using time blocking as my main way to plan my week helped me stay focused as a mom. A great article to read on time-blocking is called, “Could Time-Blocking Replace Your To-Do List? ”
To do: Download a free Spring Clean Your Daily Routine Time Blocking Worksheet, that I made just for you! There will be free printables to reflect, help you recommit to priorities, track your current schedule, and build your time blocking schedule.
About the Author: Jessica Whitney is the blogger of Simplified Motherhood. A veteran, wife, and mother of 2 littles with one on the way, she helps new moms figure out this “new mom” thing as well as provides productivity tips, toddler activity ideas, and overall encouragement to moms across the country. Get the Spring Clean Your Daily Routine guide, right in your inbox (it’s free!).
Follow Simplified Motherhood on:
Check out our Spring Tips for Moms Guest Blogging Series.