Thursday, April 26, 2012

Treat Your Homemaking Like a Real Job because IT IS!

The word "homemaker" brings up all kinds of cliches, depending on who you're talking to. Some people automatically think of their mom while others imagine a fictional character like June Cleaver. No matter what person/character you may think of, society as a whole is still baffled when a women CHOOSES to trade her business suit for blue jeans and her prestige for baby puke. However, any woman who has followed her heart back home will tell you that it was the best decision she has ever made.

As much as we may love being with our children all day, creating a pleasant atmosphere, and cooking nourishing food; we can all benefit from using some of the same principals that businesswomen use in order to succeed in the office.


Most business owners have a vision. This is usually spelled out in their mission statement. They memorize it and they encourage their employees to memorize it as well. After all, without a certain end result in mind, everyone would be going in their own direction; working without purpose.

Same thing at home. If you are merely performing your domestic duties without having a "big picture" in mind, you'll feel like you are working in vain and are far more likely to slack off a bit. However, when you can identify a family vision, you'll be able to pin point your role within the "big picture", giving you the proper perspective on what it is that you're doing each day.


Sure, your house may function without a plan, but how effective are you going to be if you only ever "fly by the seat of your pants"? Take a cue from women who work outside the home and create a game plan for getting things done. Start out by setting aside at least fifteen minutes or so each morning to write out a to-do list. Then, try to take a couple of hours each week to focus on reconnecting with God and refocusing on your homemaking goals. If a weekly "time out" isn't feasible, I'd highly recommend you schedule a personal retreat at least one weekend out of every year.

I'll note here that it makes a world of difference when I pray over my plans and my work ethic each morning. God is faithful to direct my day according to His will and to provide those gentle nudges to get back on track. {He has to tell me step away from the computer quite often} ;).


 If you worked for an employer, you would be expected to dress appropriately for the job. Correct? So, why do we homemakers insist on staying in our PJ's or sweats? I want you to notice that I did use the word "we" there. I struggle with this too! PJ's and sweat pants are oh so comfortable but they tend to make us feel {or become} lazier than we should. After all, this type of clothing is worn to sleep. Why on earth would we wear it to work in?

On the other hand, I'm not suggesting that you put on a fancy cocktail dress to scrub your toilets. This isn't realistic, or very practical for that matter. So, what kind of clothes should you be wearing?
Think: easy and comfortable. Below is an outfit that I've pinned to my "Outfits" board on Pinterest:

Pinned Image

If you don't want to deal with all the extra accessories, don't worry about them.  Without them you're still left with a reasonably stylish, yet practical outfit for being home. The shirt isn't dressy, but it isn't a t-shirt either. The jeans and shoes are comfy enough to withstand a day full of toddler chasing {which should totally be an Olympic sport, in my opinion}. For those of you who like the accessories just as much as, if not more than, the outfit, you can always add them back in whenever you're headed out the door.


 You're placed in an unfamiliar kitchen and told to bake a cake. You're not given a recipe. You open the fridge, pantry, and cupboards to reveal emptiness. No ingredients and no baking tools. How well do you think you're going to do?
Of course, this is an extreme example, but think about it: how often do we set about to do something but don't arm ourselves with the proper knowledge or tools to accomplish the task at hand. Now, I'm not suggesting that you go out and buy a gadget for every solitary chore or buy hundreds of books. A lot of gadgets don't work and the internet is full of FREE information!
What I'm saying is that you should invest in quality tools that are going to help you do your job correctly and efficiently. Here's a personal example: I've been trying to make more homemade foods instead of buying processed "foods". Just this week I conquered tortillas and pizza crust. But, I don't have a stand mixer. I did it all by hand. Could I continue to do it by hand? Sure. Would it make my job easier if I had a stand mixer with a dough hook? Most definitely. So, I'm saving up for a stand mixer because I believe it will make me more efficient in the kitchen. Until then, I'll enjoy the process of literally making these things by hand.


I cannot stress to you what a difference my home management binder has made in the efficiency of how I keep my home. Everything from copies of my routines to my daily planning pages to my meal planning pages are in one place. Plus, it's so easy for me to grab my binder on my way out the door as I go to my weekly time out.

I'm in the process of revamping mine a bit, so I'll be sure to post about it when it's complete. It's taking me a bit because I'm trying to create my own printables to go inside. If anyone is interested, I'd be happy to share them with you.


I do have a couple more tips to share, but this post is already lengthy enough, so stay tuned for a part two post. In the mean time, I hope the tips that I have shared will help you manage your home like a pro!


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