You work 40 hours a week. You have children in school who also have extra-curricular activities that demand your time. You have a commute to consider. Your parents also need you. You feel pulled in so many directions. How do you come up with a to-do list that is fair to everyone including yourself?
Create a Full List of Responsibilities and the Time They Require
Start by coming up with a list of the things you need to do each week. If you take out the time you need for sleep, you’ll have about 16 hours per day left. Take that 16 hours and allow yourself at least 2 hours for time to unwind. That leaves you no more than 14 hours to do the rest of the things on your list.
Go through your daily list of time you spend commuting, the hours you work, the time it takes to feed your family, the tasks your parents need help with, and your household chores at your house. Leave time for unexpected situations like traffic jams, work emergencies, and errands.
Take that list and prioritize it. Put the most important tasks at the top of the list and make sure the least important tasks are at the bottom.
Consider What’s Reasonable
Looking at that list is it even possible to do everything that needs to get done? If it’s not, you’ll need to delegate some of the tasks to others. If you’re the only one in your family caring for you mom and dad, that needs to change.
You may find yourself needing to prioritize that list. Your children shouldn’t have to give up favorite activities, so try not to trim the list by removing their activities. Look at the help your parents require. Is it possible to leave some of it for weekends?
Your paycheck is important, so you won’t likely be able to do anything there. You might be able to assign some of the household chores at your own house to others. If you’re the only one doing the vacuuming, come up with a chore list at home that has your children helping when possible.
Have You Considered Respite Care?
Respite care is a service where caregivers come and help out. While caregivers are with your parents, you can run errands, take a nap, or focus on another task you haven’t had time to complete. To arrange respite care, talk to a home care advisor.