Whether you are single or stay at home parent, I’m sure you’ve experienced how much of your time can be dispersed in so many different areas. From cleaning, to cooking, being present for your child, nurturing the relationship with your spouse and/or significant other, your business and/or work, all at the same time.
It can be an austere time in your life, especially compared to the lifestyle you may have previously experienced before you had a family when you may have had more time for yourself, your friends, etc. But now you may feel overly stimulated, not only physically but mentally, by having all your attention utilized for the juggling act we call parenting.
We’re here to tell you that although there’s only so much you can do to eliminate the burdens involved with parenting, there is a way to arrange certain areas in your life in a way that prevents stress and provides a little extra time. In response to your search for a solution, we present you with the minimalist approach to parenting.
What is minimalism?
Minimalism is all about living with less, which allows for an increased sense of simplicity in your life, which leads to overall clarity and enjoyment. Focusing on the essential few, not the many is the principle that can allow you to easily prioritize what matters most by eliminating things that are far less important and/or critical.
For many serious practitioners of minimalism, the philosophy is about getting rid of excess material things. However, you don’t have to get rid of all your worldly possessions to be a minimalist and this principle can be applied to a lot more than just the material.
Once you have discovered the value of minimalism you can implement the lifestyle by decluttering and downsizing on material things initially, and eventually focusing on decluttering mentally and strategically (how you plan your days). Overall you should expect an increase in free time and begin enjoying the beautiful things life has to offer such as:
- Quality time with family
The advantage you can get from eliminating material things in your home as a parent, from furniture to toys, eating utensils, etc, is you now have more space and fewer things to clean up, sort and organize! It’s as simple as that. Take inventory of all the things in your life and start crossing things off your list and give away or sell them online.
Once you’ve mastered decluttering materialistically, begin observing how you can simplify your day to day tasks. Do you find that you typically take longer, less efficient ways of getting things done out of sheer habit? Are you prioritizing tasks that are less important and putting things on the back burner that provide you with more happiness?
Here are some minimalist strategies you can put into action today.
- Start by decluttering one room at a time. (rule of thumb: if you didn’t use something within the last 6 months you may not need it at all.)
- Have the kids pick several of their most favorite toys and encourage them to donate the rest.
- Limit the number of things you have in your home
- Designate a place for every object
- Eliminate expenses and use the extra cash on services that will save you time (grocery delivery, babysitting service, cleaning service, etc.)
- Increase proximity to places you frequent on a daily basis (job, gym, etc.)
In our family, living a simpler life has helped us create effortless order in our home. Time is used more effectively and we are in a better place mentally, with a newfound ability to focus on what matters most.
How this will affect your children
You’ll begin to notice that your relief from hectic daily regimens of mommy/daddy grunt work can potentially make your kids happier and healthier. Applying some of these principles in their lives at first will be challenging, especially if you’re eliminating some of their belongings. However, you’ll find that eventually, they will cultivate the ability to better entertain themselves and discover what their true talents and interest are.
If you’d like to learn more about helping your kids discover their innate abilities and talents, there are some interesting educational platforms out there like Montessori that helps kids develop natural interests and activities through non-formal teaching methods.
We hope this article helps eliminate some of the disarray that unfortunately comes along with the rewarding journey of parenting!
Love & Hooks