Remember ‘me time’? The days when you used to squander a whole afternoon reading a book on the sun-lounger in the backyard (while topping up your tan)? Or when you could decide to go out for dinner and drinks at the very last minute, as late as eight?
Well, as you well know, once you have children, those days are long gone. (Well, at least until your kids are old enough to drive themselves to the mall or make a sandwich of their own).
I’m a romantic comedy author and mum to one-year-old twin boys and recently I’ve been interviewing professional organisers for a new fiction series I’m working on.
And as well as offering advice on de-cluttering people’s homes and offices, they can also, in effect, de-clutter your whole life. Here are some tips I’ve gleaned, which could help you claw back some ‘me time’…
- Do you really need to have eye-candy from a certain fashion label paraded before you every time you sit down at your PC? Do you really need to know about cheap flights you won’t be able to take in the foreseeable future now you have travel-unfriendly dependents? Prioritise your ‘subscribes’ and unsubscribe to emails you no longer find relevant.
- Watch your social media use. Facebook and the like can be a real time-suck. You can still be ‘social’ – connected – but you really only need to check your profile once a day or every few days to keep up with what’s going on. Or, if you love it too much, at least reward yourself with a social media flutter when you’ve ticked off a task on your to-do list first.
- Forever picking up free magazines and newspapers while you’re out shopping? Or borrowing stacks of books and mags from the library, which you’ll only have to spend time returning (never read)? Got countless titles you’ve subscribed to cluttering your letterbox? If the amount of media you’re bringing into your home is overwhelming you, then cut it back. Forget about your FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) and streamline your reading material to what you’re really interested in. And to what will make you feel warm and fuzzy when you need an escape, rather than consuming horrible news stories that’ll make you lay in bed at night wide-eyed…
- Split the housework 50/50 with your partner. You shouldn’t be the only one scrubbing the loo/s. And, hey, be a bit slapdash domestically if you’re pressed for time. It’s better for your pad to be moderately clean and you still to have time for fun than spending your whole weekend slaving over it and feeling cranky come Monday.