How to Accomplish Everything EVER

October 24, 2012

Amber blogs at A Day Without Sushi and is one of the most amazing bloggers I know – her kind heart and ability to reach out to others, plus her honesty about what life holds. Here she tells us how she does it all. All-ish.

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I have what some consider a fairly busy life.

I take care of my very active three year old boy. I work as a realtor’s assistant part-time. I manage social media for a small business (or two, or three). I am slowly growing a photography business. I am finishing up voice work for an audio book. I am in final edits of a novel, working on two others, and attempting to maintain a blog that includes a weekly feature that requires that I keep up with the latest in television.

When I write it all out like that, I feel the need to shove my face in a bag of coffee and never come back out.

In reality, I don’t generally give much thought to how much I have going on. After all, there are moms I know who have more than one kid. Moms who have to leave their houses to go work a 40+ hours a week job.

By comparison, I feel like I’m really not all that busy.

Yet, I’ve been asked recently by more than one friend, how do you do it all?

So, when Diana so kindly asked for me to guest blog, I thought this would be the perfect time and place to share my secret of accomplishing all in the history of things.

Ready?

::cue drumroll::

I don’t get everything done.

TA-DA!

Now, before you start shaking your fists at me for leading you on, I do get a lot accomplished. But not always the way I want to.

My laundry piles up, and I end up spending an entire day doing nothing but. My floors don’t get a solid scrubbing until company is scheduled to come over. Dishes pile up. The exercise bike gets neglected.

Sometimes I can only post once a week on my blog. The finished novel may take forever to get published because I need to find time to query or decide to go my own way. I may have to turn down voice work. The photography business is growing slowly because I just don’t have time to do more with it than the occasional shoot and update to the photoblog.

And that’s okay. It has to be.

The family’s spiritual, emotional, and physical needs are being met. Jobs that bring in a paycheck get done by whatever deadlines are agreed upon. (That sometimes requires typing with a kid on my lap, taking calls in a closet, or getting creative with ways to occupy the kid). Once those items are done, in that order, then I move on down the mental checklist of what’s left.

Maybe that means that it will take me forever to publish my first book.

Maybe it means that those extra ::mumble:: pounds will take forever to burn.

Maybe that means that I want to hide when my parents stop by the house and find every toy in existence on my family room floor (I blame them, since they bought most of them).

Maybe it means a frantic dash to the washing machine when the hubs proclaims he will begin turning his dirty underwear inside out if he doesn’t get clean ones by tomorrow.

Maybe that means that the little person inside me that compares my messy house with my mom’s perfect home will have to learn to shut up.

Maybe it means I have to stop comparing myself to everyone else, period.

I’ve learned to deal with those maybes. Most days.

And on the days when I’m not handling the “maybes” so well, on the days when I feel like I’ve failed if I can’t tick off every task on a neverending list, on those days I find something that makes it okay.

Like the little man telling me how much he loves me.

Or, you know, chocolate.

Yes, chocolate and little boy hugs are the secret.

This post was sponsored by a pile of ignored laundry. 

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Amber Medina West is a WAHM who likes to yell “WHAM!” when people ask what she does, because she’s a special brand of weird. When she isn’t busy paying the bills, she’s chasing a kid, managing a husband, and writing her brains out. You can read about the mundane and the madness at her blog, A Day Without Sushi, or chat with her on Twitter.

21 Comments

  • Renée Schuls-Jacobson

    November 4, 2012 at 1:08 pm

    I wonder why comment love didn’t work. Hmmm. Oh. Now it is. 😉

  • Renée Schuls-JAcobson

    November 4, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    I love this so very much. I am not good at just rolling with it. And as one of those people who has asked you: “How do you do everything?” I seriously get that having this kind of mentality is necessary.

    But I can’t figure out where to cut the corners in my life.

    Like, I can’t NOT grade student papers. Right?

    And I can’t NOT plan for classes? Right? I mean, people PAY to attend. I ned to be prepared.

    ANd I am supposed to have food in my house. I’m cool with pizza one night. But my husband will not dig it if I start blowing off meal prep. But that means I have to go shopping — my most dreading task. Because it is such a time suck.

    And now my son needs braces. Okay, so I have to get him to the orthodontist for consultations and the dentist for extractions. I have to do these things.

    I have already cut down to one post a week.

    I have already cut down to laundry once a week. (We have a lot of underwear.)

    I don’t know what else to cut.

    Maybe that’s why I want to go on SURVIVOR so badly! I think it would feel like a vacation! Lots of people helping to make meals? OMIGOSH! I can’t imagine it! Lots of people working together to get something done.

    Like you, I have put myself on the back burner.

    But unlike you, I am almost 45. I can tell you, that after doing that for 20 years, you start to wonder: “WHen is MY time?”

    I’m saying, my time is NOW. I’m claiming it. So even if I don’t get on SURVIVOR. I’m disappearing in January and February when they are filming, and I’m going to rebuild that damn book.

    Will you help me? I’m scared.

    1. Amber

      November 5, 2012 at 11:37 am

      I will most definitely help you!

      Whether it is cheering you on while I watch you brave nature on Survivor, or helping you rebuild your book. 🙂

  • Kimby

    October 29, 2012 at 5:44 am

    Hi! I’m visiting from A Day Without Sushi and I enjoyed looking around your blog, Diana. As for your guest post, Amber… you’ve discovered the secret to staying sane while tending to family. Sometimes you don’t get it all done. And that’s entirely okay!

    1. Amber

      October 29, 2012 at 8:43 am

      Thanks for visiting Diana’s home!

  • Roxy Bee

    October 27, 2012 at 8:16 am

    I wanted to take a minute to thank you both very much for your blogs (i.e. bravely sharing your thoughts and experiences with us). They both have affected my life in a positive way and have inspired me to write in by own blog too as a way to pay it forward to someone else or just myself later on. 🙂

    1. Amber

      October 29, 2012 at 8:42 am

      Great to hear! Best wishes on your blogging adventures to come.

  • Gloria Richard

    October 24, 2012 at 7:07 pm

    I, too, needed to hear this today, Amber — that it’s OK not to get everything done.

    Priorities and focus.

    I could focus on that little guy of yours for hours. And, I love the diversity of your interests.

    PLUS! Bonus! This website is like eye candy — especially the cool hearts near comments. *grins*

    1. Amber

      October 24, 2012 at 7:11 pm

      Isn’t Diana’s place great??

      Thanks for joining me in the “it’s more than ok” to just get the important stuff done.

      (And if you think my little guy is cute, check out some of Diana’s posts for her little lady. I think Jonas may have a crush.)

  • Amber

    October 24, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    …because I am a GENIUS in getting ALLTHETHINGS done, I moved my blog to a new address this week. Which means all the lovely links in this post will take you to my old home for today, but should you read this after that, the site will redirect you to my new home.

    Apologies for the inconvenience. 🙂

  • Lauralynn Elliott

    October 24, 2012 at 11:46 am

    First things first, Amber. And it sounds like you have that going. Sometimes we have to prioritize, and the least important things sometimes don’t get done. But our families are healthy and happy, and that’s what’s most important.

    1. Amber

      October 24, 2012 at 12:17 pm

      Exactly.

      I think we live in a culture that puts the emphasis on the perfect (“look at what I can do!”) and we forget that we don’t HAVE to do ALLTHETHINGS ALLTHETIME. 🙂

  • Tiffany A White

    October 24, 2012 at 11:03 am

    As always, Amber says it best… she is amazing and always knows just what to say to make the rest of us feel good about ourselves. And don’t let her fool you, she’s pretty great at accomplishing more than I can manage… I wish I had her energy! GREAT post!!

    1. Amber

      October 24, 2012 at 11:27 am

      It helps to have amazingly supportive peeps cheering me on. 🙂

  • Jen

    October 24, 2012 at 9:20 am

    Love this, my house is always a disaster. I have three very busy kids and it really is like shoveling during a snow storm 90% of the time. Anyway, good for you getting it all done!

    1. Amber

      October 24, 2012 at 10:28 am

      I’m still trying to make it work with one. I swear, our living room is a sea of blocks and letters a good part of the week.

      Thanks for the comment!

  • Tameri Etherton

    October 24, 2012 at 7:21 am

    Aw Amber! You’re so amazing with all you get done, even if laundry has to wait a day or so. Just look at the smile on your little guy’s face! I just want to hug him all day long.

    I am constantly inspired by everything you do, whether it’s your photography, your writing, or just your witty thoughts on Twitter. It’s not a competition to see who’s the best mom, so we need to stop stressing about what everyone else is doing. Be proud of your mom’s perfect house, but even more proud of your little guy and those books you’re writing. I’m so glad I met you in this big old blogoverse.

    1. Amber

      October 24, 2012 at 7:39 am

      Thanks so much, Tameri! You are always so encouraging.

      I am proud of my mom. Even with her health problems, she manages to keep a lovely home and always be there for any of us kids. But I am learning to be happy (and even proud) of what I accomplish, too.

      So glad the interwebs brought us together. 🙂

  • How to Accomplish Everything Ever |

    October 24, 2012 at 6:56 am

    […] scheduled Why It’s Worth a Watch post today, I am super excited to be guest blogging over at Hormonal Imbalances, sharing with everyone how I manage to get it all […]

  • Jamie

    October 24, 2012 at 6:10 am

    This was exactly what I needed to read this morning.

    1. Amber

      October 24, 2012 at 7:20 am

      I’m so glad!! Thank you. 🙂

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