I say to my students in my “Writing Mommy” workshops that being a mom, no matter what you do is a process of constant evolution. Oh how this is true! The older my daughter gets the harder my working challenges become and the obstacles become greater. I’ve experienced this double time last year when we moved to the Middle East. Any major change will throw off your groove but then add an active, growing little girl to the mix and WOW I felt overwhelmed. I’m a mom, a writer, a dance teacher and thanks to my technique of journaling and studying my daily energy I was able to adjust pretty well to being a mommy working from home. I easily got work accomplished during naptimes, early mornings and late nights. However, something wonderfully fun has happened lately though it’s not been great for my writing.
This year Baby Markey has started preschool and activities. She’s in soccer, gymnastics, music, and Latin dance. We stay very busy with our active girl and I wouldn’t have it any other way. However, this involves a lot of time in the car and a lot of time getting someone ready for her classes – time that is taken away from my writing. So as I say in my class, when your schedule undergoes a change you must reevaluate where you are and how to best handle the change.
This week I’m the student to my own lessons. I’ve pulled out my spiral notebooks and I’m recording my daily activity level to track what times of day I have the most energy for different tasks. For example, the after lunch slump isn’t the best time to plot a bestseller. Instead I use that time to take care of undesired tasks such as laundry. Yep, that stuff still has to get done when your busy mom! Especially when still early in the New Year it’s easy to want to dive in on my goals. However, I think it’s equally as important to have a plan and know what I’m doing.
The most important thing is that I’m Natalie. I’m more than a mommy, a wife, a writer, a dance instructor, a pet owner, etc. I’m me and I’m going to make time and find the best way to do what I’m passionate about. I love writing and sharing stories so I’m going to make sure I continue to do so just as I love to dance and enjoy sharing the skill with my students. Times change and my routine must accommodate that change. It’s difficult to accept change and I’m saying this because I’ve done it. I liked my old writing routine until it no longer worked for me. It was tempting to keep trying the same routine because it was what I was used to. However I’d rather change, take the advice from my own carefully written lessons and find what works for me. Even if finding what works sets me back a week or two.
Now after nearly a month of rediscovering “normal life” after a long vacation and studying to create my new productive writing routine I’m back on track. Sometimes I think you really have to take a few steps back in order to move forward.
Okay writing/working/busy moms (and dad’s too) out there. How have you gone about readjusting your routine to accommodate the evolution of your family’s needs?