Creating Your Mother’s Rule of Life for Sanity at Home and Work
With great empathy, I had to laugh when my friend Courtney Perry expressed her woes around the crazy spring and summer she was in the middle of with her three kids. Her oldest will enter high school this year and she has two younger elementary daughters. I could so relate to her frustration of having to be in two to three places at one time, spending more of her time driving between events than even watching her kids participate, and feeling frazzled, frustrated, and exhausted. Courtney was so animated in expressing her feelings of stress that I told her she would have a roaring Facebook Live video that many Super Moms across the globe would relate to.
Balancing the needs or your kids, your spouse, your home responsibilities, and you can be a complete overload. Add running a business or being a single parent in the mix and it’s not that far off to think you could one day “go postal”!
But I have found a tool that helps you shift from being reactive to proactive in managing the multiple demands of your life with ease: the Mother’s Rule.
I modified this tool I learned from Holly Pierlot, author of “The Mother’s Rule of Life”. Holly was a completely overloaded homeschool mother of five, pulling her hair out trying to juggle the competing responsibilities, needs, and commitments.
One day Holly stepped back. She thought about individuals in religious life. Religious orders like the Carmelites have a “rule of life” to help govern their daily activities that lead to sanity, peace, and the fulfillment of their mission. Holly thought why couldn’t she apply this same concept to her life as a wife and mother. From there the “Mother’s Rule of Life” was created.
I have adapted my own application of the “Mother’s Rule of Life”. Like any tool, it works when you work it. I create a new “Mother’s Rule of Life” each change of season because the needs of my kids, my family, myself, and my business all change over time.
I’ve experienced first hand the peace from using it and the disorder when I neglect it.
Here are my adapted steps to create your personal “Mother’s Rule of Life”:
- INVENTORY NEEDS – Begin the process by keeping in mind the developmental, emotional, spiritual, and physical needs of all of your family members, yourself, and your business. Your kids, marriage, and business needs evolve. The next step to sanity is to make sure the strategies and structure to your life evolve along with them.
- DRAFT A CALENDAR – Figure out what activities your kids will do, what your marriage and spouse need, what activities are important for your business health, what you need as a person. Play around with how those things look in a schedule grid. What worked last summer, may not work perfectly this summer, because needs change.
- NEGOTIATE CONFLICTS / BE CREATIVE– This is the nitty-gritty. See where needs and commitments clash and either cut things out or look for creative ways to make it work, like carpooling, assigning tasks to your children, tag teaming with your spouse, or hiring help in your business. Pray for discernment from the Holy Spirit. Going on the fly really is a way to put your will ahead of God’s, because you never really make the hard choices. It also cuts out innovative ideas on how to make it work when you are building the plane while you are flying it rather than spending some pre-flying time in the airplane hanger.
With a well-thought Mother’s Rule of Life, you don’t have to be a martyr, shoving your needs to the bottom of the list while you cater to everyone else’s. You also don’t have to live with the regrets of neglecting the beautiful people God put in your life. And your Mother’s Rule of Life helps your business and revenue continue to flow.
Christian Entrepreneur’s Biz and Life Tip: Embrace the tension of balancing the needs of your business, family, and self as a wonderful way God helps form you in Christ’s image.