There is one question I ask myself everyday now.  I noticed a massive shift in how I make things happen in my life. As a busy mom of 3 little kids (3,5, and 7) my day is filled with repetitive cleaning, cooking, laundry, constant refereeing between the kids bickering — you get the idea.  I can easily lose sight of things that I want to do or accomplish and chuck it under There’s No Time.  In the past when I have failed to accomplish anything for my own personal needs I used the following excuses:

“Oh well, I am a busy mom.”
“My family comes first.”
“These are the busy years.”
“One day they will be grown and I can do everything I want to do then.”

Other times the resentment may have been more apparent, “Of course I can’t get my nails done, why should I do anything for myself? Besides they will only get ruined after doing the dishes! God forbid Mommy do anything for herself.”

Does this sound familiar?

I was defeating myself with the There’s No Time response before I even came up with a plan.  This effected all of my decision making – such as to go buying clothes for myself, getting my hair done, going to the gym or even just taking time to read a book.

What changed?  I started asking myself “What Needs to Happen to Make this A Reality?”

One simple question that changed how I do things.  For example, I wrote about how I spent the past year dyeing my own hair because I could not find a hair dresser that I liked.  After months of wallowing in bad hair, feeling like it goes along with the busy mom look, I decided What Needs To Happen to Make this A Reality.  Well all it took was actually booking an appointment.  So simple.  I could have avoided months of DIY color treatment had I just asked myself this question back in October.   This seems easily sorted with just one phone call but applying this question is what made me take ACTION.

I have recently been concluding my initial health coach certification.  At the end of April I felt so far behind with paperwork, organising, certification tasks not complete.  Taking in all the reasons why tasks were not complete I reverted to my usual reasons:  I am a busy mom,  I have 3 kids, They come first, blah, blah, blah. I thought for sure there was no way I was going to finish my course in May.

I had to take a step back and ask myself “What needs to happen to make this a reality?”  I decided that I had at least one hour a day to commit to what I wanted.  I was going to give it a go for one month.  One hour a day is what needs to happen to make this a reality.  So, this month that is exactly what I have been doing (which I can’t wait to tell you the results – eye opening!)

So what happens when you ask yourself this question.  Firstly, you have made a decision and actually admitting to yourself what you want – no matter what it may be (a new job, a new outfit, or maybe just an hour on your own).  You are acknowledging to yourself THIS IS WHAT I WANT. Yay.  You are heading in the right direction.

Ok next.  What needs to happen to make this a reality?  This is where all the fun comes in. Now  you get to be creative and think of options to make this happen for yourself.  You play out the different scenarios in your head and COME UP WITH A PLAN. Write it out if you have to. By doing this, you are steering yourself in the right direction.  Just because you want something for yourself doesn’t mean it has to compromise your family responsibilities. Most times, doing more for yourself makes you a happier person which will have that positive chain reaction in all of your relationships.

Now you got your plan. You may find that you need to ask for help from others.  For example, if you are asking for an hour to yourself each week and you’re a busy mom working full time, who can help you make this happen for yourself?  Is it your spouse, friend, neighbour or maybe you hire a babysitter.  Every scenario is different.  Just don’t be afraid to ASK FOR HELP.

Once you have your plan in place, you’ve enlisted help – GO FOR IT!  TAKE ACTION.  Take those first steps toward getting what you want.  It is going to be exciting; it may even be scary but you’ve got to move forward toward what you want.

I have found that asking myself this question has made me more proactive in getting what I want without feeling guilty.  I am still very busy with my kids, and all the crap I mentioned earlier with regards to housework and kids fighting.  Those things are not going to disappear, however I am doing more of what I want, making plans and acting on them.  Guess what?  I am happier for it.

In this post I have used easy every day scenarios but this can be applied to bigger goals – such as starting a business, losing 20 pounds, moving home.  We live in a fast paced environment.  We are all busy and often feel like we don’t have the time or resources to accomplish what we want.  That is not true.  Next time you are faced with a decision that is geared towards improving your happiness whether it is taking a class, or going on holiday, instead of telling yourself There’s No Time just ask yourself What Needs to Happen to Make this A Reality?

 

I want to hear from you.  What is one thing that you have wanted to do for yourself but haven’t done it because you think there is no time in your daily schedule?