Time Management for Mothers

by Laura Kronen on January 25, 2012

Super MomTime management is a huge concern for moms these days. Between kids’ activities, getting things done around the house and for many, the demands of working in or outside the home, many supermoms have given up on their noble fight to find time for themselves and are just trying to get everything done.
The following time management tips can be used by busy moms everywhere to take some of the stress out of life, carve out time for fun with the kids, quality time with your partner, or even that coveted and nearly forgotten alone time.  I bet you have no idea what that even is anymore.

Get Organized

It’s been said that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and nowhere is this adage more applicable than when discussing time management tips for moms. Simply being organized can eliminate stress from forgotten appointments, double-booking, lost homework, and many other stress traps that busy moms face. Keep an organizer, use your smartphone for one of the reasons it was intended and plan ahead so you aren’t scrambling at the last second.  This is a great source of stress and make most mothers forget their own name on occasion!


Yes, when your next of kin come to you, they are so sweet and helpless, you end up doing everything for them, and these habits are difficult to break. But, it is impossible for one person to do it all.  You are going to snap eventually. While it’s tempting to cover all household responsibilities yourself – most of us are guilty of this because we know the RIGHT way to do everything – putting some effort into getting the men and children to pitch in can really pay off in the long run. The trick is to break chores into simple tasks and reward people for doing them.  Even if the kids don’t make the bed the same way as you do, as hard as it is – just leave it be and shut the door.


Multitasking was once hailed as the time management tip to top all time management tips. Imagine: Getting twice as much done in a day. You can bring home the bacon AND fry it up in the pan!  But soon people started seeing that multitasked projects weren’t completed as accurately, and suddenly staying focused on one thing became the new time management fad. How about a compromise? Pair mindless tasks with focus-dependent ones when it’s appropriate. For example, you can make business calls while taking your daily walk (don’t forget exercise is crucial to having the energy to get through the day), or quiz your kids on test questions while you clean the kitchen. But if you feel more frazzled than helped, it’s time to shelve the multitasking for a bit.

Learn When To Say No

Learning to say no to people’s requests may be an obvious time management tip for moms, but that doesn’t make it an easy one. Mothers encounter many different worthy requests for their time and attention, that saying no will often disappoint someone. However, what we don’t always realize is that when we say ‘yes’ too much, people also get disappointed because we can’t do our best when we’re spread too thin. That’s why it’s important to look at your priorities and learn to say no to time demands that aren’t absolutely necessary.

Take Shortcuts

I am a perfectionist, so I know how hard it is to just settle for a good-enough job,  but if you can get pre-cut vegetables or canned sauce for dinner, do it. If you can afford one of those dishwashers that can handle un-rinsed dishes, even better. It doesn’t make you a bad mom. The time management tip to remember here is to find the shortest route to where you need to be (getting to the office, getting homework done, getting the house clean), and take it.

Be Flexible

Is your life turned upside down when a child is sick and stays home from school?  While it’s important to have an idea of how you’d like your schedule to look, it’s important to keep things flexible enough to accommodate the unexpected things that moms encounter — like the aforementioned sick kid, spilled milk or crazy meltdowns while out at the store. (by the way, every child has had a melt down at some point or another – no one is paying much attention to yours)

Having a rhythm for your day but an added time cushion and some backup plans can take the stress out of the unexpected, and keep one schedule hiccup from throwing off your whole day or week.

Take Care of Yourself, Too!

While taking care of parenting, relationship, household and workplace responsibilities, it’s easy for moms to put taking care of themselves last on the list. However, not only is self-care a good idea for physical and emotional health, it’s a good time management tip for moms as well. When we’re tired or haven’t had enough healthy food to function at our best, we’re often less productive and organized, and this lack of clarity can translate into more time wasted throughout the day and less time available to get everything done that needs doing. So get quality sleep, eat a healthy diet, and exercise and you’ll be operating at your best -— and less stressed. And one final tip: get dressed in the morning- out of your sweat pants and hoodie.  When you feel put together, it’s a lot easier to keep it together too.


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