As you may know, I am a full time mother to my two girls, with little to no help during the day. I know, I know, a lot of you are too, I don't deserve a medal, but still I thought I would share a couple tips on how I get about my job.
Because, yes, it is a job! A cannot quit, cannot take a holiday from, cannot f* up type of job. Which is why Tip #1 would be exactly that: when it seems like the day started off wrong and you don't feel like doing anything (but you can't, right?), approach it like an office job: plan, organise, tick off lists.
Tip #2: Go out as much as possible. I am not a stay-at-home mom, pun intended. Kids in my opinion need to go out, so I take mine with me everywhere I go, even if it's not a "child's activity". Rain, cold, sickness never stops me. I have a morning or afternoon outing policy, no matter what, we go do something outside the house during the day. Might just be going to the recycling bins or picking up some random stuff. Also helps that I have no choice but taking them with me most of the time ;) !
Tip #3: If you have to stay home for important reasons ( delivery of last online shopping session for example), plan activities. I love searching "toddler activity" on Pinterest, people are so creative!
Tip #4: Use naptime as much as possible but don't dread the waking up! At first I use to be so obsessed with "what am I gonna do when she wakes up" that it would ruin my "free" time. There is a 100% chance they will wake up from nap, so relax, and go do anything and everything that is impossible to do with a kid: sleeping, eating chocolate in peace, watching TV, shopping online, working etc..
Tip #5: I am not against TV at all, growing up we could watch it as much as we wanted. Granted, there was no Netflix, no Youtube, and very little to watch. But still, I try to do the same for my girls, so I let my 3 year old watch a couple cartoons in the morning while I have my coffee and obligatory phone check. I prefer to have her watch the actual TV versus my phone as the screen light is not as bad or so I've heard.
Tip #6: Stick to the schedule. We have always had a strict schedule for the day since birth, for feeds, naps etc and I find it very helpful to the kids and to me. It gives a rythme to the day and helps get through it no matter what. Having an "end" time seems to make everything easier.
Tip #7: Rest. Know when you need to get to bed so you can be efficient the next day. I know if I'm too tired I'm much more likely to snap at the girls (or anyone else for that matter).
Tip #8: Kids should adapt to your life, you should not adapt your life to them. In the limits of the achievable of course! I always keep this in mind, I believe it helps me stay sane and it teaches them their place in the world as well.
These are only a few tips, and I guess they apply better to babies and toddler as this is as far as my experience goes! Let me know your tips in the comments!