We know. Life is hard. Life is busy. You have so much on your plate. Work, hubby, kids, home. And more than once, you take it all on your shoulders. You can’t help it. You just have too. You grew up in a society where it was expected of you to. It is called « mental load ».
As a matter of fact, you are always thinking.
When you see a sock on the floor, you pick it up. When someone leaves a plate in the sink, you clean it or put it in the dishwasher. Hubby did not put the bin outside? You do it for him. Child #1 did not put their dirty laundry in the basket? Here you go again. And again, and again, and again…
Aren’t you afraid of burning out? Or having a go at your husband and say something you’d regret? Because that’s what awaits you at that pace. You are one person with a lot of responsibilities. You can’t take on other’s. You can’t do everything for everyone at the price of your own sanity and health. Because that time you spend doing what other’s haven’t done and that you think you need to take on is time you are not using for yourself.
You need to stop. You need to let go.
We know it’s hard. We are in the same situation. But we’ve got some tips to make it easier for you.
Take a day
Or two, or three. Or a week. It does not matter. Take time off where you’ll do nothing but enjoy yourself, where you will ignore everything you do on a daily basis and there, you will see. You will feel it. You will realize how many little things you were doing that, all put together amount to something big. You will understand your mental load and be able to deal with it, delegate, make sure whatever you were doing is done by the person who should have done it to start with.
Talk about it
Are you just you in your relationship? Did you make babies just on your own? Did you buy this house just you and only you? Likely not. You have a partner. And if that partner shares a surname with you, a house and so many other things, then it is only fair that they also share chores and worries. That partner who probably is the first one to tell you that you should relax and that you think too much, without being aware of how annoying that sounds to you or that his lack of involvement is what leads to you doing what you are doing. Talk to him. He needs to know.
Make them understand
Hey junior, why do you leave your socks on the floor? Are they too heavy for you to put in the laundry basket? Is it to much effort? Would you like me to leave all my dirty laundry in your room? No to all of these. So why do you do it then? Yes, it is just a matter of seconds to pick it up and put it in the basket but it’s the accumulation that makes it tedious and exhausting. And this applies to everyone. Don’t let everyone being to comfy to do anything. Make them understand that a community works if people respect each other, think about others, don’t freeride, etc. You’ve all got to be involved.
Plan and schedule
Ultimately, little things can be fixed easily. But you know, people need more guidance sometimes. So make a schedule. Who does what, when, in what order, in what turn. Delegate and share the tasks will only make it go faster and the load will be lighter for everyone. Preparing breakfast, emptying the dishwasher, doing the table, doing the laundry, hanging it out, cleaning up the table, walk the dog, etc. Everyone takes on a chore and changes the next day. Names are on the board, no more « I did it last week », no more arguing.
So, are you ready? Show how hell of a leader you are and have them do what they are supposed to do. When it’s done, go out with your girls and enjoy some cocktails. God knows you deserve it!