Resist the urge of “doing it all”!

I recently read an article about a woman complaining that she is fed up with bearing the burden of her household. She was annoyed that her family relies on her for everything; housework, packed lunch, making appointments, noting event dates, buying birthday and Christmas gifts. Her family expect her to have the answers all of the time.

Does this sound familiar to you, if not you then a family member or friend?

Sometimes we take on too much and we try to  be “everything” to everyone.  We delude ourselves into thinking that if we do not carry out a task, the heavens will fall. The reality is your child may have to eat school dinners if they forget to make their lunch AND pack it in their school bag or your husband may not have a gift to hand to his sister as you of course chose not to remind him.

I definitely take on too much which is entirely my choice. Nobody forces me or convinces me it is my role – I voluntarily pick up the slack. Part of the reason is I am a born organiser and I much prefer order to chaos. The other part is I see it as my responsibility to ensure our home life is smooth running.

One example, I used to pack my daughter’s school lunch, leave in the fridge for my husband to put in her school bag just before they left the house.  One day, he forgot to pack it and had to return home – thankfully he was close by when the school officer called. Ever since then I pack her lunch just to ensure there is no chance of her leaving it at home. 

I will not deceive you, I am known to complain when carrying out some of these tasks especially when tired.  My husband on the other hand will pace himself, he will mow the lawn, rest then hoover or wash the dishes.  I want to complete jobs one after the other then I wonder why I feel exhausted. 

Generally I remember the birthdays of my husband’s family members. He usually relies on the Facebook reminder!  I have the dates of our children’s school events/birthday parties fixed in my head and logged on my phone – I then raise a discussion on who will escort and collect them. 

Life is busy but everyone needs time out during some point of the day which is why we aim to get our children, fed, bathed, read to and prayed to by 8pm – actually closer to 8.30pm!

How much are you in demand?
When and how do you cut off?

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21 thoughts on “Resist the urge of “doing it all”!”

  1. I am fairly good at making (key word: making) my husband share the household chores. He rarely volunteers to do anything except cook (which is big because I hate to cook), but if I ask him to take on a task, he will. What bugs me even more is that all the things I voluntarily do–he never says thanks. That would go a long way to eliminating the resentment of chores! Good luck delegating more–it’s important to do!

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    1. I like the fact that you “make” your husband share household duties! Just yesterday I read an article about a married man who assumes he is “helping” his wife do household chores as oppose to just doing his share. Funny that household tasks are generally seen as the role of a woman.

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  2. I sometimes think about what it would be like to live with my boyfriend and his son, but then I look around at my orderly house and relative peace and quiet and remind myself it’s great to spend time with them once or twice a week most weeks!

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  3. Great post! I find that I have a lot more on my plate than my husband. So, I learned to delegate to the kids when I just don’t have time to do the task. I prefer to not keep recurring events in my mind. I added them to my calendar years ago, added an alarm for two weeks before to remind me to buy a present and it has reminded me ever since. 🙂

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  4. I coach others on the importance self-care, which includes knowing how and when to say “no” so I make a point of following my own advice. Still, you surely are not alone in your thinking or concern for your family Phoenicia. Important topic!

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  5. I too have been guilty of taking on too much at any one time. As a people pleaser, I’ve always found it hard to say no when others ask me to do them favours and such. But, I’ve since realised that I need to prioritize instead of promising to do everything to everyone and then feeling utterly overwhelmed by all the things I have to do.

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  6. I am guilty of relying on others, mainly my family. When I went on student exchange, I had to depend on myself to get tasks done like washing, cooking, and even remembering important due dates. I certainly learnt how to be much more independent and hopefully my family can say that they no longer have to “do it all” for me.

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    1. I am sure you will go on to utilise the new skills you have learnt. I rarely cooked when I lived at home but always did housework. As soon as I moved out at aged 24 I cooked daily.

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  7. My girlfriend is guilty of this. Her kids are 12 and 16, yet she still packs their lunches. It drives me nuts! I am guilty of being the opposite way from her: taking care of my own things, which of course can make you appear more selfish than you really are to someone who is so selfless.

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  8. When it comes to a household we should not take on the burden of doing it all. But sometimes, for instance once in a while when it comes to academic studies, we benefit from doing it all. The results would have suffered if we let others do what needs to be done.

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