By Tammy Goddard
WE READ IN PROVERBS 31 of a woman who every mother dreams will someday marry her son and rear her grandchildren. This girl is never idle but spends her energy and time looking after the needs of her home and family. She keeps their clothes clean and repaired. She plans and prepares nutritious and tasty meals. She makes sure they always have the appropriate clothing for the day. She even has time to earn a few extra dollars to help with the financial needs of the home. To sum it all up, she has her priorities right. Proverbs 31:27, “She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.”
Of course, we know that this woman is the perfect example of a homemaker. The only problem we have is that none of us are perfect. We all fall short in one area or another in our homemaking skills. Often the problem lies in managing our time. We simply run out of time. We cannot figure out how to get it all done. If we learn to avoid time wasters, we will become more successful in our homes. The time we gain will be a precious gift that relieves much of the stress we feel. Let us examine some time wasters that we should learn to avoid:
Learn to work while you talk.Use the speakerphone or a blue tooth device to keeps your hands free.You can make beds, clean the bathroom, sweep floors, fold laundry, and even do dishes while you talk.Keep conversations as short as possible.A family member across the country may require more time than a friend whom you will see at church tomorrow.If answering the phone will make you late or take away from family time, use the voice mail or an answering machine. You can schedule a time to return calls, which will not interfere with your family.
Television, Tablets, and Computers
If we are not careful, we can spend more time talking to our friends on Facebook than we do training the “little friends” in our home. We can know what is going on in the life of our Facebook friends but be clueless about what is going on in the life of that best friend we married.Carefully schedule the time you spend on social media, web browsing, and other entertainment as short breaks between chores or as an occasional part of family time so you may enjoy it together. Time flies when you get in front of a computer. Before you know it, several hours have passed, and you have not accomplished anything that will profit your family.
Always use a list when you go to the store. Try not to wander up and down the aisles looking at products that you do not need and cannot afford. Call ahead and check if the store stocks the item that you need. Try to make only one or two shopping trips a week.
We can do many things while sitting in a waiting room for an appointment. Carry note cards in your purse and write a sweet note to someone; bring grocery ads and plan next week’s meals; write out memory work on a 3×5 card and memorize Scripture; bring a good book to read; or carry tracts and use this time to witness to those around you. Instead of complaining about the long wait, plan ahead and make good use of the time.
Looking for Lost Items
We have all been frustrated while searching for keys, a purse, important papers, shoes, or a lost object. If this seems to be a reoccurring activity in your life, then there are a few things you can do to remedy the problem. Make a place for everything and take a few extra minutes to put things in their place.Teach your children to do the same.
Failure to Plan Your Time
Make a list and then work down the list. Avoid a slow start.Get up and get going. Be careful about taking too long on one chore. Don’t daydream or do a job better than it needs to be done; also, don’t get sidetracked with a low-priority job. It will not matter how beautiful that freshly painted piece of furniture looks if your husband does not have clean socks to wear to work the next day.
We have all felt like the Dr.Seuss character that said, “How did it get so late so soon? It’s night before it’s afternoon. December is here before it’s June. My goodness how the time has flown. How did it get so late so soon?” Let’s identify and avoid the time wasters in our lives. It is possible to do all that God wants you to do without feeling stressed out.