As a working mother I live by my schedule. I’m a full time counselor, a part-time yoga instructor and full time mom and wife. I also have to fit in exercise which is no longer for vanity but for optimal health. And let us not forget that the short person and my husband want to eat. I like to say that I don’t watch much TV but the truth is I have no time during the week and the weekends are for family. Even though I teach folks to stay present, I often feel nostalgia for the times when I could finish reading a book in a day without interruption.
I know myself well enough to know that reading is important to me. Even though I feel like I have less time to do the things I enjoy, I have to figure out a way to make it happen. Prioritize joy! Click To Tweet Here are some ways I was able to fit more reading time into my life.
Read during your lunch break.
Sometimes I sit in the break room and fraternize with my colleagues but at least 2 times out of the week I go to my car to read my book and eat my lunch. The silence is blissful. I am currently reading You Are A Badass. I highly recommend it.
Keep books in the bathroom.
My son has been known to follow me into the bathroom but he is quiet as long as he is near me. There are also times when I lock him out because sometimes you just want to shit in peace. Depending on how your colon is set up you can get 30-45 minutes of reading in. And for you super regular people who BM in 10 minutes; stay on the pot nobody knows what you are doing.
Take the train instead of flying.
This is a twofer. You save money by taking the train and you gain time to read because it will take you longer to get to your destination. This is a perfect way to get more reading time in when traveling for work. Train rides are my favorite way to cuddle up with a book. Click To Tweet
Read during your pedicure.
I get regular pedicures. I spend a lot of time barefoot as a yoga instructor and I want something pretty to look at. I use this time to relax and read. I purposely leave my cellphone in the car. Gasp! So that I am not tempted to get on my device. This time is specifically for reading. I have also had to tell the lovely lady removing dry skin and ingrown nails to stop talking to me. I know she is being chatty because she wants a nice tip. Ma’am its unnecessary, shut your pie hole. Your tip is the same no matter what.
Try audio books.
This is kind of cheating but moms have to create short cuts all the time for our sanity. I have a nice commute to and from work. Big Magic is kind of thick and I need something inspirational playing in the background as I navigate traffic. There is also a better chance that I will finish it as an audible book. There are at least four unfinished books sitting on my nightstand. Summer break is coming, so maybe I’ll be able to finish a book or two.
Working moms, how do you prioritize reading?
Satan tried it, but I’m a demon slayer. The recent political climate has made me physically ill. I’ve tried various coping mechanisms. The first was to flee. I refused to watch the news, I closed down my facebook account and kept checking the date on my passport. Family is an anchor, if it weren’t for the guys I would be in another country right now. Cuba is looking very inviting and I still have family in Jamaica.
Then here comes sadness. I’ve been in my feelings; feeding them bagels, fries and refined sugar. Finally arriving at rage, my inner seething literally broke my immune system down. During the MLK weekend and the inauguration weekend I was sick in bed unable to do anything but sleep.
So my first order of action is MORE self care. Loving on myself is priority number one. I must be more intentional with taking care of myself which means trying new things for the benefit of my total wellness. I reintroduced myself to lavender. I haven’t been a fan in the past but I have found three ways to integrated lavender into my life and receive its calming benefit.
I drink Yogi’s Stress Relief Honey Lavender Tea. I made the mistake of drinking this tea at the day job and kept nodding off while the children were talking to me. Don’t be like me. Drink it before going to bed for optimum results. Another thing that has been helping me maintain is the use of oils. While decluttering I found a vial of lavender and vanilla oil. I place a few drops on temples and wrists during meditation. Focusing on the scent helps me find stillness quickly.
The family fave is Ganga incense. It is a mixture of cinnamon, lavender and jasmine. If heaven had a smell, this would be it. You only have to burn it for a few minutes for it to permeate the house. It changes the vibe instantly.
I know things appear bleak but take care of yourself. Remember that not much freedom fighting can be done from the inside of a straitjacket.