In the Checklist Mom “Peace of Mind – On the Checklist” Training Program, our time-management program for moms, I talk about a powerful tool called tracking that helped me find an extra 14+ extra hours a week!
Tracking is merely writing down how you’re spending all the minutes of your day. I set a timer on my phone and then track whatever I have been doing for the past 30-60 minutes whenever it goes off.
Doing this exercise is so powerful. After doing it for just one week, it helped me easily find up 14+ extra hours a week!
Before I got married and had children, I had a pretty good handle on time. I worked a very demanding job as a law firm associate (usually 60+ hour weeks), I trained for triathlons (usually 2+ hour workouts per day), I had a busy social life, I volunteered with several organizations… I did A LOT during my week. People would often ask me “how do you do everything that you do???” I wasn’t really sure, but without trying too hard, I managed to do it.
When I got pregnant and had my baby things dramatically changed. All of a sudden, I could barely cope with just working and taking care of the family. I thought it was sleep deprivation and the demands of taking care of another human being. Those contributed, but not as much as I thought. It wasn’t until I started tracking and taking a good hard look at how I was using my time that I realized what a major change I had unwittingly made during pregnancy.
Before I got married and moved in with my husband I didn’t have a television. I hadn’t owned one or watched TV for at least 10 years. Even after I moved in with him I still pretty much ignored it until I got pregnant.
During my first trimester though I was so exhausted the only thing I had energy for when I came home from work was watching TV. I didn’t even have the energy to go out or to read like I had previously done. When I got home from work I collapsed in a heap on the couch until I was on the brink of sleep. I then dragged my weary body to bed where I slept for the rest of the night.
After that first trimester my energy started coming back, but I continued watching TV. I, my husband, and step-kids had gotten hooked on some TV shows. We all watched as a family and it felt very bonding. The TV came on after homework and generally stayed on until after bedtime. I didn’t feel like I watched “that much” TV, but when I actually tracked my time usage, I realized that I was watching 2 – 4 hours of TV per day! That’s 14 – 28 hours per week!! No wonder I’d been so much more productive before I got pregnant and had my daughter! I thought it was motherhood that screwed with my time. The big issue wasn’t the kid. The issue was that I was now spending all those hours on my butt watching the tube.
When I became conscious of where my time was going, I decided that I preferred how I used my time before TV. I stopped watching TV for the most part and went back to reading books (one of my great loves), painting, going to networking activities, spending more quality time with the family, volunteering, putting more focus into my business, and other activities.
By doing this, I suddenly found time for things I had the hardest time fitting in before. I’ll still watch the occasional movie with my family but for the most part, my time doesn’t go to TV. I also cut out some other activities that were sucking my time and energy, but TV was the main one for me.
Something happens when you get conscious of what you’re actually doing with your time. I’m going to guess that if time is a problem for you, then you probably have little sense of where exactly your time is currently going.
I suggest that you start tracking. It will show you clearly how you’re currently using your time – you will be able to make conscious decisions. These conscious decisions will allow you to feel more productive and will help you get rid of the stress, drama and guilt. You will probably choose to let go of activities and even some people that drain you. You will choose to say “No” to some people and you probably won’t be able to please everyone. But you’ll be pleasing yourself and that’s what’s great.
Tracking is just one tip in the powerful 10+ lessons of the Checklist Mom “Peace of Mind-On the Checklist” Training Program.
It’s a program created by a mom (yours truly) for moms; has lessons that are super simple and quick to implement, is made to work with the powerful and free Checklist Mom app, is guaranteed to find you 3+ extra hours per week of guilt-free, stress-free, drama-free time for YOU to do with as YOU want, AND is on sale for a limited time.
If you’re interested in finding out more check it out HERE.
In the meantime, if you feel like time is a challenge for you try tracking your time and see what happens. In my experience and the experience of my students is’s magical. Let me know how it goes!
Monick Paul Halm is the Chief Creative Officer at the Checklist Mom. She has made it her mission to empower women and moms to thrive in their lives, families, and careers. She’s a busy mom and stepmom of 3, certified life and career coach, author, speaker, and real estate investor. She’s a wearer of many hats, and juggler of many duties and loves connecting with our moms. You can connect with her on the Checklist Mom Facebook Page and on twitter as @thereikicoach.