Where are my fellow stay-at-home moms at? Please tell me that I’m not alone in feeling unmotivated and just plain lazy some days. I struggled with this especially when it was just me and Violet at home every day (before my youngest was born). I feel like the more kids you have, it’s probably easier to stay active because you have no other choice. But when you stay home, and have 1-2 kids, I think that it’s probably easy to fall into the trap of laziness.
Last year, probably around this time actually, I was really convicted in this area. I have worked a regular job since I was 17, so when I decided to stay home after I had my first baby, I really didn’t know what to do with myself. I was also pregnant with my second baby, and sick, so it was sometimes a struggle to even get out of bed. I remember reading Proverbs 31 in a bible study, a chapter I was already familiar with, but God used it to prick my heart in a new way.
The second part of verse 18 says, “Her lamp does not go out at night.”
This woman, this mom and wife, is hard working, even after the sun goes down. It doesn’t say that she works hard all day, and then binge watches Netflix after her kids go to bed. It says, her lamp does not go out at night. If this is the woman God so clearly wants us to strive to be like, our lamps should not go out at night either.
Now, does this mean that we don’t rest or take the time to recharge? Absolutely not. We need to be rested, in order to serve our families. But what it meant to me was that my daughter goes to bed at 7:30pm, and it was my routine to put her to bed, make myself some food, and settle into a night of watching TV. Could I instead, spend an hour or so catching up on laundry? Or maybe read a book? Definitely.
The tips that I am about to share are actually geared towards productivity during the day, but I truly feel that the more motivated and productive we are during the day, the better we can serve our husbands and children all of the time – whether that be during the day, or continuing to burn our lamp at night. Laziness breeds more laziness; join me in fighting this sin.
I am definitely not perfect in this area, but because of God’s grace, he’s allowed me to grow, and I am thankful! Here are some tips that I have discovered lead to a more productive day. I find that when I do these things, I’m generally more motivated.
10 Ways to be More Motivated as a Stay-at-Home Mom
- Pray over it! If you truly desire to be more motivated in your home, then first you need to be praying over that. Our God is good, and he delights in answering us. And what a godly desire that is to better serve our families!
- Wake up before your littles. This one is not easy for some women, but if you take anything away from this post (well, besides the prayer part), it should be this. There’s something about waking up to a crying baby, or a toddler saying “mama, mama!” that can start off our day a little frantic. Do yourself a favor, and set your alarm for an hour before you know your kids will get up. This will give you time to wake up peacefully (isn’t that better?), have uninterrupted time to read God’s word, and get prepped for the day.
- Shower and get dressed every day. There’s something about a hot shower and clean clothes that make me feel ready to conquer the day. It’s almost like I can’t fully function until this is done. Some days, all I do is wash my face and change out of my pajamas and into yoga pants, but it still has the same effect. Being clean and wearing different clothes than you slept in can change the way to feel about the day. No longer do you feel like you can just lounge around, you are ready to be productive! This also gives me the ability to run a last minute errand if I need to, or the desire to go on a walk. When you’re already ready for the day, you can be more flexible.
- Fill your home with natural light. Open those curtains and blinds as soon as the sun comes up and brighten things up. It’s amazing how invigorating light can be, am I right?!
- Program your coffee pot. Did you know that you can probably schedule your coffee pot to brew coffee at a set time? Even the cheap ones can usually do this! I love to program my coffee pot at night, to automatically brew my coffee the next morning. Remember tip #2? If you need some motivation to get up before your kids, try knowing (maybe, even smelling) your coffee is already brewing. I don’t know about you, but this definitely helps me get out of bed!
- Make a to-do list and pray over it. Do you have a to-do list? I keep a notepad on my fridge (with a magnet on the back) and usually start the day making a short list. Even if it’s just as simple as things like shower/wash hair, meal plan for the week, grocery shopping, etc. When you have something written down, you are more likely to do it (this is a proven fact!). Even if you think it’s something small and pointless (putting on my list to wash my hair may seem silly), checking off a box is motivating in and of itself! Have you ever prayed over your list? I am guilty of only doing this when I have a particularly long list, but boy, does it make a difference when I make time for this. The pressure is off, I don’t feel frazzled, or stressed, and all it takes is asking the Lord to walk along side of you as you go about your day. Try it!
- Pick up during nap time. If your littles are old enough, have them clean up their toys before they nap, but if they aren’t, clean up as soon as you put them down or right before. Having a clean living space really helps me to be productive during this time. It may be tempting to take it easy during naps (and I’m not saying that this is never okay, sometimes mama needs a nap too), but this is prime time, people! This is when the real work gets done. Capitalize on this time and get to that list! And you will feel so much more ready to do that when the toys are picked up – trust me!
- Never go to bed with dishes in your sink. This one is for my girlfriend Katie 😉 We have joked before that we can’t go to bed with dirty dishes in our sinks. And while this may seem trivial to some, it’s less about the dishes, and more about waking up to a clean slate. Waking up to a messy house is one way to ensure you will not be productive. Pick up after your kids are in bed for the night, and load and run the dishwasher. Don’t put a load of laundry in unless you’re sure you are going to stay up to finish it (that includes folding, mamas). Waking up to a clean house (and coffee brewing, remember?) is good way to wake up. Am I right?
- Turn off the TV during the day. While I am not against TV at all, I do feel that it can be a trap. There have been times in my life that I would always have the TV on in the background, and that is something I no longer do. Even if you are not watching it, it’s a distraction – plain and simple. Not only that, but what kind of example is it for your kids? When the TV is on, it can be tempting to “take a break,” and then get sucked in for the long haul. Hear me mama, taking a break isn’t bad, but take a break doing something else. Read a book or lay down and actually close your eyes. I try to keep the TV off during the day, and not only does it encourage my toddler to play (like kids should), but it keeps me in check too.
- Get out of the house. This one is for the new mama that stays home with her young baby. I’ve been there, it’s hard. You’re maybe a little bored, but you’re exhausted and would rather lay around at home. Leave your house. Do something other than stay home. The fresh air is good, it will energize you, and it will force you to get yourself together. I said it before, but laziness breeds laziness. The more you lay on that couch, the less you will ever want to do anything else. Meet some other moms at the park, walk around Target, just get our of your house. It gets easier!
I pray that some of these tips resinated with you and that, together, we can work to be as hard working in our homes as the Proverbs 31 woman.