As both an accountant and a mom, you’re probably all too familiar with hectic mornings getting ready to tackle Excel spreadsheets but first needing to tackle getting the kids ready for school or daycare. The struggle to find the right balance between your personal and professional life can be overwhelming, leaving you feeling like you’re constantly juggling multiple hats.
As we all know, the demands of being an accountant mom can be intense. On one hand, you have clients relying on your expertise and precision, while on the other hand, your children are eagerly vying for your attention and support.
The pressure to win in both roles can leave you feeling stretched thin, with little time left for yourself. As accountants, we tend to be overachievers, but when it comes to being both an accountant and a mom, our overachieving ways can come at a cost, mainly to us.
As an accountant mom, you know that time is of the essence, and efficiency is key. That’s where creating better routines comes into play.
By establishing more effective routines, you can regain control over your day, reduce stress levels, and strike a harmonious work-life balance that allows you to balance both – being a professional and a mom.
But why are routines so essential? Well, they provide structure and organization to your day, allowing you to maximize your productivity and make the most of your time.
Routines help you establish clear boundaries between work and personal life, enabling you to be fully present in each role without feeling overwhelmed or guilty. They also serve as a powerful tool for managing your energy levels and preventing burnout.
But it’s important to note that all routines are not created equal. I’m going to delve into the art of creating better routines specifically tailored for accountant moms. I understand that your time is precious, so I’m going to be giving you practical tips and insights that you can easily implement in your daily life.
I’m also going to provide you with more than just anecdotal advice. I’m going to back it up with real-life examples and studies, showing you the proven benefits of incorporating these routines into your daily life.
You’ll discover how accountant moms just like you have transformed their chaotic schedules into streamlined routines that have significantly improved their well-being and overall satisfaction.
Whether you’re struggling with time management, finding it difficult to prioritize your tasks effectively, or simply yearning for more moments of self-care, this episode is for you. I want to empower you with the knowledge and strategies that will enable you to take charge of your time and create routines that work for you and your family.
This week I’m going to discuss the importance of assessing your current routines and strategies for creating and implementing better routines.
The importance of assessing your current routines
When it comes to navigating the challenging terrain of being an accountant mom, establishing effective routines can be a game-changer. Some of the many benefits these routines can bring to your life include:
Increased productivity – one of the most significant advantages of having a routine is the boost it provides to your productivity. By following a structured schedule, you can eliminate time wasted on decision-making and indecisiveness.
When you know exactly what needs to be done and when. it allows you to dive right into your tasks with focus and efficiency. By streamlining your workflow, you’ll accomplish more in less time, allowing you to create more time for the things and people you love.
Reduced stress levels – as an accountant mom, stress may seem like an ever-present companion. However, implementing routines can help alleviate some of that stress. Routines provide a sense of predictability and control, allowing you to approach each day with a calmer mindset.
When you have a clear plan in place, you can mitigate the anxiety that comes from feeling overwhelmed or constantly playing catch-up. With reduced stress levels, you’ll be better equipped to handle both professional challenges and the demands of motherhood.
Improved time management – time is a finite resource, and as an accountant mom, every minute counts. Routines act as a powerful tool for managing your time effectively. By allocating specific time blocks for various activities, you can ensure that essential tasks are completed without neglecting other important aspects of your life.
Time management becomes more intuitive, enabling you to balance your work commitments with quality family time and personal self-care. Through improved time management, you’ll experience a greater sense of balance and fulfillment.
Studies have also consistently shown the positive impact of routines on mental well-being and work performance. For example, one study found that employees who followed consistent daily routines reported lower levels of stress and higher job satisfaction compared to those without structured routines.
Another study revealed that individuals who engage in regular routines have better sleep quality, improved overall health, and higher levels of happiness and well-being. And another study observed that individuals who follow structured routines are more likely to engage in positive health behaviors, such as regular exercise and healthy eating habits.
Now that we’ve established the benefits of routines and the supporting evidence from studies, it’s time to explore how you can assess your current routine and make improvements that align with your unique circumstances as an accountant mom.
By conducting an honest assessment, you can pinpoint specific challenges and create a solid foundation for building better routines as an accountant mom. Let’s dive in.
Start by reflecting on your typical day or week. Consider the following questions:
How do you currently structure your time? Are there any recurring patterns or habits in your daily routine? What tasks or responsibilities tend to consume most of your time? Do you feel overwhelmed or stressed by your current routine?
By gaining a clear understanding of your existing routine, you can begin to identify potential areas for improvement.
To make this helpful, I’m going to break it down into a checklist or questionnaire to help assess your current routine, so you might want to pause and get a piece of paper:
Do you allocate specific time blocks for work, family, and personal activities?
Are there any tasks or activities that consistently disrupt your planned schedule?
Are you making time for self-care and relaxation?
Are you able to prioritize your tasks effectively?
Do you find yourself constantly multitasking or feeling overwhelmed by your to-do list?
Are there any non-essential tasks that can be delegated or eliminated?
Do you feel like you have enough quality time with your family and loved ones?
Are you able to separate work and personal life, or do they often blend together?
Do you have boundaries in place to protect your personal time and avoid burnout?
Are you aware of your energy levels throughout the day?
Do you schedule high-energy tasks during your most productive times?
Are you incorporating breaks and moments of rejuvenation into your routine?
As an accountant mom, you face unique challenges that require tailored solutions. Here are some common challenges and how better routines can address them:
Time Constraints – We often struggle with time constraints due to demanding work schedules and family responsibilities. By implementing efficient time management techniques, such as time blocking or batching similar tasks together, you can optimize your productivity and create a more balanced routine. This way, you allocate specific time slots for work, family, and personal activities, ensuring that each aspect receives adequate attention.
Work-Life Integration – Finding the right balance between work and personal life can be a constant challenge. Establishing clear boundaries between these two realms through routines can help you achieve a healthier work-life integration. For example, designating specific work hours and creating family rituals, such as dedicated meal times or regular family activities, can foster a sense of structure and harmony.
Self-Care and Well-Being – We often neglect our own well-being while juggling multiple responsibilities. By incorporating self-care activities into your routine, such as exercise, mindfulness, or pursuing hobbies, you prioritize your mental and physical health. Carving out dedicated time for self-care not only rejuvenates you but also enhances your overall productivity and happiness.
By assessing your current routine, answering the self-assessment questions, and considering the specific challenges faced we face, I hope you gain valuable insights into areas that require improvement. Now let’s practical tips for implementing and refining your routines.
Practical tips for implementing and refining your routines
Now that you understand the importance of creating better routines, it’s time to delve into practical tips that will help you implement and refine your routines for maximum effectiveness:
Start small and build consistency – when implementing new routines, start with small changes that are manageable and realistic. Focus on one area at a time, such as optimizing your morning routine or establishing a regular exercise schedule. Building consistency is key, so stick to your new routine for at least a few weeks to allow it to become a habit before introducing additional changes.
Plan ahead – take the time to plan ahead and anticipate potential obstacles or conflicts in your routine. Consider factors like upcoming deadlines, family commitments, or personal events. By proactively identifying and addressing these challenges, you can make necessary adjustments to your routine and ensure a smoother workflow.
Set clear boundaries – establish clear boundaries to protect your time and energy. This can be challenging, but you need to communicate your availability and limitations to colleagues, clients, and family members. For example, define specific “office hours” when you can be reached for work-related matters, and communicate designated family time when you’re fully present and unavailable for work-related interruptions.
Build in buffer time – accounting work often involves unexpected delays or additional tasks. Incorporate buffer time into your routine to accommodate these unexpected situations. This buffer time can act as a cushion, allowing you to handle unforeseen challenges without feeling overwhelmed or falling behind schedule. I teach my time management coaching clients to schedule “Overflow time” at the end of the day to handle the unexpected.
Regularly evaluate and adjust – routines are not set in stone—they should be flexible and adaptable to evolving circumstances. Regularly evaluate your routines to assess their effectiveness and identify areas for improvement. Seek feedback from your support system or mentor to gain fresh perspectives and insights. Make necessary adjustments to your routines to ensure they continue to align with your goals and priorities.
Optimize repetitive tasks – identify repetitive tasks within all areas of your work life and home life, and look for ways to streamline or automate them. Utilize technology tools or software to automate routine processes, freeing up your time for more value-added activities. Look for ways to optimize efficiency in your workflow, such as creating templates for commonly used documents or using shortcuts in your accounting software.
Minimize distractions – in a world filled with constant distractions, it’s essential to minimize them to maintain focus and productivity. Create a distraction-free work environment by turning off notifications on your phone or computer, designating specific times for checking emails or social media, and utilizing productivity apps or browser extensions that block distracting websites during work hours.
Manage your mind – the single most important way to create better routines is to learn to manage your mind. Why? Because every action you take is driven by your brain. Take short breaks throughout the day to pause, breathe, and recenter your thoughts. Use this time to assess your energy levels, reflect on your progress, and make any necessary adjustments to your routine to ensure it continues to align with your overall well-being.
Hopefully, by implementing these practical tips, you’ll be well-equipped to create and refine routines that maximize your effectiveness and create a better balance between your roles as an accountant and a mom. The most important thing is the power of consistency and perseverance in maintaining successful routines.
Awhile ago, I was coaching Lisa, who was struggling to maintain a healthy work-life balance. Her job as an accountant was demanding, and she often found herself buried under piles of paperwork and looming deadlines.
As a mom, she felt guilty about not spending enough quality time with her children, who were growing up so fast. Her daily routine was chaotic, and she constantly felt overwhelmed.
But then, one day, Lisa decided that enough was enough. She knew she needed to make a change in her life to become more effective and feel more fulfilled. We worked together to create a more organized and efficient routine.
First, Lisa started by setting clear priorities. She identified her most important tasks at work and her top priorities as a mother. This clarity allowed her to allocate her time and energy more effectively.
Secondly, she embraced the power of time blocking. Lisa established specific time slots for focused work, family time, and self-care. This time management technique helped her make the most of her day without feeling rushed or stressed.
Lisa also realized the importance of delegation. At work, she began to delegate tasks to her team and outsourced certain responsibilities, allowing her to focus on higher-value tasks. At home, she involved her spouse and children in household chores and responsibilities, teaching them valuable life skills while lightening her own load.
Lastly, Lisa incorporated mindfulness practices into her routine, including meditation and journaling. These practices helped her stay grounded, reduce stress, and maintain a positive outlook on life.
The results were amazing. Lisa not only excelled at work but also enjoyed a more harmonious family life. She had more quality time to spend with her children, and her relationship with her spouse improved. Overall, Lisa felt happier, more fulfilled, and more in control of her life.
Lisa’s journey from a stressed to a balanced accountant mom serves as a testament to the power of intentional routines and self-improvement. It shows that with determination and the right strategies, anyone can create a more fulfilling and productive life.
So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed and stuck in a chaotic routine, remember Lisa’s story. You, too, can transform your life for the better by taking small, intentional steps toward creating a more effective and balanced routine.
Like Goldilocks and the 3 bears, be willing to test and retest various routines to find what’s just right for you. You’ll be so happy you took the time to create a better routine.
Routines help you establish clear boundaries between work and personal life, enabling you to be fully present in each role without feeling overwhelmed or guilty.
They also serve as a powerful tool for managing your energy levels and preventing burnout.