You’ve watched others get the most done as a busy mom and wondered how do they do it all?
It’s not easy for sure. But there are some working mom tips that can help you be more productive and get more done during the day.
If you’re ready, check out this post from my guest Darlene or listen to the complete podcast episode below.
Brain dumping for moms
With so much on your mind, you may feel like you have so much to do in little time.
Or your mind is all over the place because you are trying to managing everything in your head.
Instead of doing this and losing sleep or forgetting things, try the brain dump method.
What is brain dumping?
Brain dumping is a method of transferring ideas about a particular subject on paper or on a Google Doc.
You may have heard about this for writers, but this works very well for moms that have a million things on their mind.
Darlene has a unique strategy for brain dumping for busy working moms.
How to brain dump in sections
Darlene’s method of brain dumping involves breaking down your life into different sections. This includes work, your business or side hustle, and home.
Then take each section and write down everything that needs to get done.
So when I have this brain dump and you have the one section for work, okay, what do I need to do for work? So I have to have a meeting at 12 with someone. I have to have this project.
Don’t forget about the other sections like kids, home, self and others.
I love the way that Darlene really makes sure she covers everything for the kids using head, shoulders, knees, and toes.
Then I have a section for kids. And it kinda also jogs your memory, your thoughts of what you need to do. And I always say it’s funny, but his head, shoulder, knees, and toes.
So I think of my children that moment and say, okay, what do I need to do from their head down. Okay, my daughter needs her hair done. My daughter needs to go see an eye doctor or my son needs to go to the dentist. And I like to work my way down her body and write down everything that I need to do for each child.
Thinking about everything that your child needs from the head down allows you to capture everything and not forget a thing.
For the home, Darlene suggests breaking the home into each room and writing out projects or things needed room by room.
Now that you have everyone else taken care of, don’t forget about yourself. You can’t leave this area blank.
Make sure to include some form of self-care that will fill you up.
It doesn’t have to be a massage or a pedicure, but it could be something as simple as reading a book or taking a walk.
The last section is the other. This includes other things and people like friends, family, and church.
Don’t be like me and forget your bestie’s birthday 3 years in a row.
So get everything out of your head and on paper so that you can move to the next step.
How to get the most done as a busy mom
Now that you have everything out of your brain and on paper (or in a Google Doc), its time to start getting things done.
It may be overwhelming when you look at everything that you need to do and how much time you have.
But there are two ways that Darlene shares that will allow you to be more productive and get the most done as a busy mom.
Task batching is a time management strategy that can be used at work and at home that allows you to maximize your time and productivity.
Task batching is where you do the similar task during a dedicated time period, typically without any interruptions.
Multitasking seems like it allows you to get more done.
But in actuality, you can take longer to complete a task because you are constantly switching your focus.
Everything time that you switch task your brain needs time to catch up.
Plus, you’re more likely to make mistakes when you’re multitasking, which means you will have to spend more time redoing the task to correct the mistake.
With task batching you’re keeping your focus by doing a similar task, so you actually get more done overall.
Darlene suggests breaking your days up so that you know what times during the day you will do each task.
For instance, in the morning you have your morning routine and your morning to commute to work.
Then in the afternoon during lunch, you can have a break to make several phone calls at once.
You can make all of the appointments for the kids during this time.
The other way you can look at your time is with time slots. Darlene prefers this method because she likes to get competitive to see how quickly she can get a task done.
I know that if I tell myself, Oh, I haven’t tilled 11 and get this done, I’m going to get it done.
With time slots you know you only have a limited amount of time to get a task done.
So you race the clock to get the task done as quickly as possible. You can even make this a game for yourself.
To make sure that you don’t overwhelm yourself, pick out the top three things you must get done each day.
I have to at least do three things with three things I need to do. And I write it down at the top like one, two, three and make sure I at least get those three things are done and that way I can feel like I was productive today.
Ask for help
There’s a secret working mom tips that most moms underutilize. That’s asking for help.
As moms, we have a hard time asking for help. We either think that we can do it all ourselves. Or we don’t want to “bother” anyone.
You can’t do this alone.
Get your kids involved with helping with chores so there is less for you to do on your brain dump list.
Darlene mentioned that she gets her kids to help around the house with chores.
The five-year-old does things like, fix the shoes in the shoe closet. She collects trash bags around the house.
Darlene has help from another helper. Her Roomba.
And then we have a floor vacuum because of the one-year-old throw stuff on the floor all day long. So the Roomba just goes around and he’s a helpful family member.
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Darlene’s number one working mom tips for better managing your time.
When you look at your list of things to do, it is easy to think that you can get a lot done in little time.
Darlene says to overestimate the time that it takes to complete a task.
When I first started doing this, I was frustrated at the end of the day. Like, this is not working. I’m not getting nothing done. But I realize, I’ll tell myself, Oh yeah, I could do this in 30 minutes and it really takes two hours.
When you give yourself more time, you have the space you need to get things done because we know that our lives are filled with interruptions.
Plus, at the end of the day, you will be proud of how much you accomplished instead of beating yourself up because you didn’t get everything done.
Check out more of Darlene’s working mom tips and how to get the most done on her blog. You can also find her on Facebook and Instagram.
Darlene is a working mom of 3. Her children’s ages range from 1 to 12.
So she understands the challenges that moms family with infants as well as school-aged children.
Darlene lives in the DC area and has a 45-minute commute to work. So Darlene knows the struggles of working moms.
She has become very efficient at managing her time and share working mom tips on her blog, Familee of 4.
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- A brain dump in categories to get everything out of your head.
- Use batching to minimize multitasking and to get the most done as a busy mom.
- Use time slots to race against the clock to get a task done.
- Ask for help.
- One of the best working mom tips … Overestimate how long it will take to complete a task.
Links mentioned in this episode:
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These are simple yet so effective! I think I have mastered this thing but still, I see so many mothers who haven’t so this is definitely one to share on Whatsapp.
Thanks to your guest for providing these useful tips.
Definitely. Once these tips are put into practice, life becomes a little bit easier. Darlene is awesome and has plenty more great tips on here blog.
Katie @ Teacher and the Tots says
LOVE these!! My brain is so maxed these days and brain dumping sounds like an amazing strategy. I will definitely be trying this starting TODAY! 🙂 Thanks for sharing!
Thanks, Katie. You will be amazed at how much lighter you feel once everything is out of your brain and on paper. I sleep so much better after I do this. 🙂
Time slots are my go-to ways of life!! Love this!
That is awesome Megan. Thanks for stopping by.
Brain dumping all the way! I don’t know how I wouldn’t survive if I didn’t write down all the things I needed to get done or put them on my phone calendar. I need to do this more and try batching so I can hopefully stay more focused.
Absolutely Emily. I learned from my boss that it takes your mind about 11 minutes to get focused on a task you are doing. Every time that you are interrupted or try to multitask, your brain has to start the clock over for 11 minutes before it gets focused again. Once you start batching you will feel like you are getting everything done at sonic speed because you will be focused and get things done a lot faster than if you didn’t.
Kale @ steakandkale.com says
Well, I’ve been brain dumping for years and didn’t even realize it was a thing! Ha ha!
It is a helpful strategy, and I enjoy seeing everything on paper. Thanks for sharing!
LOL. Yes, brain dumping a thing and it is super helpful. I am like you. I like to see everything on paper and love it when I am able to cross things off of the list too.
Thank you for sharing these tips! I need to work on some of these and keep consistent with them! I think that is my biggest problem is keeping up with it!
No problem, Deanna. Try giving yourself a certain day or time of day to utilize these tips so that you can make it a habit. Or try putting a reminder in your phone so that you don’t forget. 🙂
I love to brain “dump”. Though I haven’t been breaking it into categories so I’ll give that a try!
Definitely. It really helps to make sure that you are not missing anything.
I love this advice and need to implement some of it in my life! I’m good at brain dumping, creating to do lists and sloting out time, but I need to be better at batching. It would make things a lot easier if I did!
I am totally with you Amy. Whenever I consistently batch my life is so much easier.
These are great tips! That is why i have a planner in order to stay sane. I also have an Irobot and it is literally a life saver
Thanks, Donnya. I am going to invest in a robot vacuum by the end of the year.
This was super helpful, thank you! It can be hard to do everything you do, but moms are amazing! I loved your suggestion of brain dumps-they help me a lot!
Thanks, Rebecca. Brain dumps are soooo helpful.