12 Genius Time Management Strategies for Busy Moms

It’s cliché and it’s true: moms never have enough time to get everything done! If you’re a busy mom, you’re gonna want these genius time management strategies so you can take back your day!

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Do you ever feel like you are pulled in about 5 different directions at the same time but get maybe one thing done?  Or maybe you worked your tail off all day but don’t feel like you accomplished anything?

Oh, I so get it!

It often feels like there just isn’t enough time in a day to get everything done! Right? Ask any mother, and she’ll tell you it’s a fact.

We all wish we had more hours in the day to do things we love. We want to watch a good movie (guilt-free) or spend quality time with our kids or have a fun night with our husband.

When was the last time you soaked in the bathtub with candles and a great book?

Everyone is busy these days, especially moms (and working moms, at that)!

The very best thing you can do for yourself and your family is to learn how to carve out time to relax and enjoy yourself. Your self-care will yield tremendous results in saving your sanity and creating a happier home.

But, that doesn’t mean that you FEEL like you can get it all accomplished.

Get our best time management strategies for busy moms at Made in a Pinch. For more helpful tips and easy recipes, follow us on Pinterest!

It’s OK to streamline tasks, hand tasks off to others, and even cut some corners here and there.

Did you hear me?  It’s ok – in fact, it’s GOOD.

If you want even more actionable tips you can start using today to take back your time, grab these free time-saving hacks I use every day!

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The good news is that I have some awesome time management strategies to help you get your to-do list done while also enjoying more fun time!

Time management isn’t just for professionals or executives. In fact, I would argue that it’s essential for busy moms to learn effective time management skills.

Time management strategies are skills that most people need to learn (um, yeah, this one doesn’t come naturally to many people).

All it takes is some simple tips and systems to balance your chores, errands, schedule and family life. You’re going to be rocking this time management thing in no time!

Ready to learn some new skills to transform your life? Apply these tips to your life, and you will find that you can get more done and relax for a few minutes.

Here are my best 12 time management tips for busy moms to help you get it all done every day and still enjoy some guilt-free down time!

Related Post: Must-Try Self-Care Routine Ideas for Awesome DIY Home Spa Relaxation

12 Mind-Blowing Time Management Strategies For Busy Moms

Use these tips to get time back in your day! I know they work because I use them myself to get more done ever. single. day!

Time Management Tip #1: Plan Your Day

If you’re like me and tend to just flow through your day, taking it as you come with (maybe) only a loose schedule to guide you, well then you have just set yourself up for not being as productive as you could be.

As moms we need to have the ability to be flexible when life happens (and believe me it does). But, as I have discovered (over and over again), if I don’t make a plan for my day, I regularly go very astray.

If you don’t have a physical (paper) planner, then at least establish some sort of daily or weekly schedule. It seriously helps!

Some examples: I get my kids to school and then I go teach an exercise class 5 days week. On Mondays I do my husband’s laundry. I clean the bathrooms on Fridays.

That kind of thing 🙂

You can use a DIY version of a planner. For many people, that works well.  However, if you need just a little more help to stay on track, a physical planner may be what you need.

Personally, I am a physical planner person. There’s just something about holding it in my hand and physically writing down my schedule that helps me keep it in my brain better and stay on track.

If you aren’t used to keeping a written schedule, start with a DIY version to find what works best for you. Just make sure that it’s small enough to be portable. You need to be able to stick it in your purse or bag and take it with you everywhere.

If you want even more actionable tips you can start using today to take back your time, grab these free time-saving hacks I use every day!

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Time Management Strategy #2: Make Lists

I have found that effective time management for moms involves not just planning your schedule, but also on making lists to stay organized.

Even with a daily plan, I can go off track when things pop up. I forget what needs to be done and end up expending so much mental energy trying to keep track of it all.

Making lists takes care of that! Writing down everything I’m trying to remember helps me

  • Keep moving forward in a positive (instead of random) way
  • takes my stress level way down
  • prioritize my tasks for the day
  • see my progress throughout the day

You can make lists for just about everything. Here are some things that I make lists for:

  • grocery shopping list
  • household items needed from the store
  • bills to pay
  • kids’ activities or chores
  • vacation/travel planning (so we don’t leave our underwear at home!)
  • chores or errands for that day

While you can certainly add your lists to your planner, I tend to keep small notepads all around and make lists on the pads. Then I recycle the page with my list when it’s complete.

If you want even more actionable tips you can start using today to take back your time, grab these free time-saving hacks I use every day!

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Time Management Tip #3: Prioritize

The key to good time management is knowing what’s a priority and what can wait.

Experts suggest that you divide your to-do list into three sections

  • things that need to be taken care of immediately
  • those that can get done anytime during the week
  • long-term or ongoing projects.

Once you have your list made and then divide it into these 3 sections (which you could do by color coding, if you preferred), first tackle those tasks which need to be taken care of immediately.

When you choose to take care of tasks lower on the priority list first, you essentially waste your time and add to your stress levels.

What HAS to get done today?  Do THAT first!

Prioritize! It’s SO important!

Get our best time management strategies for busy moms at Made in a Pinch. For more helpful tips and easy recipes, follow us on Pinterest!

Time Management Strategy #4: Enlist the Kids

Um, no! You don’t have to do everything yourself! That includes remembering everything your kids need to do.

I spent so many years keeping track of everything the kids needed to do and either doing it for them (so it got done) or hounding them to get it done.

Then a friend told me she was doing checklists for her kids to help put more responsibility on their shoulders. Genius!

I made up checklists for my kids (a slightly different one for each kid depending on what they need), and it helps so much!

Let the kids help with chores, cleaning and tidying, taking care of the pets, getting the mail, getting their homework done, and more.

Kids really are capable and useful. And it’s good for them to help the family. Plus, giving your kids checklists help them learn time management strategies and how to prioritize their tasks.

Time Management Tip #5: Establish Helpful Systems

Do you just toss the mail on the counter (or stick it in the freezer)?

Is meal planning something you have tried or do you just scramble to get dinner on the table every night?

Effective time management means having simple systems in place to help you work more efficiently.

I have a mail holder that we got as a souvenir on a trip to St. Louis. Each day when I get the mail, I recycle the ads and pieces I don’t want. Then I put the bills, etc in the mail holder.

At the end of each week, I go through the mail holder and pay the bills and file anything that needs to be filed. I also take care of anything else in there that needs to be addressed.

Another helpful system I have is to meal plan. In fact, I’ve established a simple 3 step system that allows me to meal plan a month of meals (and weekly grocery lists) in about 30 minutes.

This system, alone, saves me hours of scrambling and wracking my brain every week.

Try meal planning. It’s so worth it.

meal planning package

Time Management Strategy #6: Automate Everything You Can

Meal planning would also fall into this category, by the way J

Effective time management strategies for moms involves putting everything you can on automatic. Simplify what you do so you can do it less often  In today’s world, we can do so many things with less time and less energy than in the past.

Examples of tasks you can automate:

  • meal prep services
  • grocery delivery
  • pet supply delivery
  • Prescriptions delivery
  • online, automated bill pay
  • carpooling with other families save time

Amazon Prime Subscribe and Save can automatically send you items you need on a monthly basis. I use it primarily for harder-to-find items, but you can certainly use it more broadly.

What else can you streamline and simplify?

If you want even more actionable tips you can start using today to take back your time, grab these free time-saving hacks I use every day!

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Time Management Tip #7: Take Care of Tasks Online

With the internet and smartphones and helpful apps, we no longer have to go searching for items in a store or go inside the bank to deposit a check or even go grocery shopping.

Now these tasks can be accomplished from the comfort on your own home, efficiently and quickly.

Need to deposit a check? Use the app for your bank to take a picture of it and deposit it for you. Wow!

Need to buy kids’ clothes? Shop online – it’s fast, easy, and you can often save loads of money. Especially if you use Ebates (sign up and receive $10 just for trying it!).

I do still go to stores and shop for certain things that I need to examine in person: my own clothes, furniture, some shoes, etc. Bookstores, however, are my major downfall, and I will spend far too much money (and time) in them. I buy any books I can’t get at the library online.

Other tasks you can accomplish online:

  • Make reservations
  • Buy plane tickets
  • Buy tickets for entertainment (plays, concerts, even the movies)
  • Pay bills
  • Research travel
  • Ask health questions – you can now reach out to your doctor or a nurse online to ask questions, helping you determine if you need to take the time to be seen in person

Paying bills online is one of my very favorite things to do. I personally hate paying for stamps and taking the time to write check after check (plus paying for checks).

Not only can I pay my bills online and save time and money, but I can do it even more efficiently by setting up recurring payments

Bill Paying Pro Tip: If your finances fluctuate or are tight, I don’t recommend setting up automatic or recurring payments for bills that can change significantly from month to month. Mortgage payments are great to automate. Electric, heat, or water bills…not so great.

To save time and money, consider automating the following bills:

  • insurance (auto, life, home)
  • utilities (cell phone, Internet, cable,)
  • services and memberships (gym, guilds, business-related expenses)
  • food delivery

If you want even more actionable tips you can start using today to take back your time, grab these free time-saving hacks I use every day!

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Time Management Strategy #8: Step Away From Technology

Oh my, I’m so guilty of this! How many times have you been scrolling mindlessly through your Facebook feed or Pinterest feed or any other social media on your phone only to realize 15 minutes (or worse, 30 minutes) zipped by?

Web surfing and social media are huge time sucks for people. A seemingly innocent short break can turn into hours of wasted time you can’t get back.

If you want to take a short break, I recommend setting a timer for 5 or 10 minutes. That’s enough time to let your brain relax.

Then put away the phone or device and get back to being productive!

Time management strategies involve knowing when and how long to take a break so that you are the most effective and productive. But having your phone or device always at the ready will hinder your efforts because it’s a major distraction.

Time Management Tip #9: Use Block Scheduling

I have found it super helpful to simplify my scheduling method. Time blocking has become a life saver! Simply “block out” a set amount of time to accomplish each task on your list.

During that dedicated time for your allocated task, really focus only on that task. Leave the distractions alone and focus on your task until it’s done or your time is up.

Be sure to take a small break, then you can move to the next time block on your schedule.

I recommend starting with 15-30 minute blocks. Once you get proficient at that, you can increase your block times.

I have found that it helps me be more productive in less time because I’m focused rather than trying to multi-task. Especially if multi-tasking is your thing, I think you will find this very helpful!

If you finish beforehand, move to the next task or take a break (and adjust your schedule on the next round).

Get our best time management strategies for busy moms at Made in a Pinch. For more helpful tips and easy recipes, follow us on Pinterest!

Time Management Strategy #10: Learn To Say ‘No’

I think as moms we want to be super involved in our kids’ lives and help anywere that help is needed.

However, it isn’t necessary to go to every PTA meeting or volunteer for every committee or activity or be the team parent for every kid’s sport of choice. And believe me, I’m a HUGE fan of volunteering.

But if you want to get more done, you have to learn to say no. I think, as moms, we feel like we need to step up to every activity, every need, and every want. It’s simply not true and will suck all the time out of your day very quickly.

Saying no doesn’t just mean to everyone else. It can also mean saying no to yourself. You don’t need to take on that project or buy that unnecessary item or

Saying no can be tough, but it is a skill that frees up your time in a powerful way.

Another huge benefit to saying no from time to time is that you are modeling for your kids how to set healthy boundaries and take care of yourself.

As crazy as it may sound, a big key to time management is learning to say no – dedicate your precious time to those things that really matter and drop the things that aren’t as important.

If you want even more actionable tips you can start using today to take back your time, grab these free time-saving hacks I use every day!

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Time Management Tip #11: Get The Worst Tasks Out of the Way First

Ok, I don’t know about you, but there are some things I absolutely dread doing. Paying bills and folding laundry are at the top of that list for me.

One day I had an “aha” moment (you know where you come up with an idea and it’s like a light bulb lit up).

When I eat meals, I have always tended to eat what I like least as the first thing. That way I get it out of the way and enjoy the rest of my meal.

My ‘brilliant’ idea was to do the tasks I dislike or dread first and then get to the rest of them. That way I’m not expending mental energy dreading the task and unconsciously (or even consciously) wasting time so that I don’t get to those disliked tasks.

It was a huge turning point for me in my ability to be productive and effectively manage my time.

We all have those tasks that we just hate. Get. Them. Done. First!

meal planning package

Time Management Strategy #12: Have A “Go-To Backup Plan”

Life throws us curve balls. Maybe the kids start throwing up or your car battery dies or the dog gets sick or you forget to thaw the chicken for dinner.

The point is that life doesn’t always go according to plan. When “life happens” you can’t just throw your hands up in the air and say “I quit” (oh wouldn’t that be nice?).

Instead of flipping out and worrying about getting dinner on the table when your day has just been hijacked by life, have some simple go-to’s that you can pull out in a pinch.

For example, we always keep some chicken nuggets, ravioli and veggie burgers in the freezer for a quick meal. And there’s always some macaroni and cheese and peanut butter in the pantry.

Time Management Strategies for Busy Moms Final Thoughts

You’ve Got This!

Time management for moms can be a challenge. Seriously, something is almost always not going according to plan!

But good time management strategies for busy moms start with adopting new habits, like planning, writing everything down, and relying on lists for just about everything.

Take advantage of online convenience, such as automating regular payments and shopping online.

Finally, prioritize your tasks, instead of trying to squeeze the most important ones into pockets of your day. Only when we are intentional about how we spend our time will we be able to get it all done and enjoy guilt-free relaxation time.

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Get our best time management strategies for busy moms at Made in a Pinch. For more helpful tips and easy recipes, follow us on Pinterest!

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  1. I definitely need to focus on better time management. These are wonderful tips and tools for managing time. I will have to check out the printables.

  2. These are great tips! I keep wanting to implement meal planning and can’t ever figure out where to get started with that. I feel like it would be so helpful though!

  3. Block scheduling works best for me. Or just setting the timer for a set amount of time and doing a task for that long then moving on. There are some amazing time management tips here that I need to try!

    1. Automating helps save SO MUCH time! But I also love how much mental space it frees up for me – I don’t have to remember to do certain things because they are already taken care of.

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