Practical Prep for Your Family’s Success

Practical Prep for Your Family’s Success

By Tracy Rivera

How many of you feel like you’re always doing a balancing act with everything you have to manage for your lives, whether it’s your home, family, church, career, or any extra demands on your time?

Trying to find a balance in life takes intentional effort and figuring out what works well for your family takes time!

How about when you feel like you find that balance, and then something major comes along? Maybe something like our Heaven on Earth conference? Things like that can throw everything for a loop. I remember attending conferences years back – I felt overwhelmed trying to manage work, home, kids, and figuring out if we could cook AND eat before rehearsals or services started. Whew!

Since then, I’ve learned some practical tips and tricks that work well to make the week a lot less hectic and more manageable. Let’s look at these three:

1. Work

As a working mom, one of the struggles I had was getting everything completed at work during conference week. I felt like I was on a time crunch the whole time! Finally, I changed my approach and it made a world of difference.

One week before conference, I sit down and write out a to-do list of all the things that need to be completed/addressed during the busy week of conference. My goal is to set my work life and my team up for success, and I do this by making the effort to get everything I can get completed submitted before the week ends. By doing this, it helps me not feel rushed to complete tasks during conference week. Simple things like letting co-workers know where they can find certain material they may need helps lessen distractions and allows me to focus on all that conference brings.

Even outside of conference, this can be a useful habit to establish to help you prepare for days or weeks that you know will be especially busy or potentially stressful.

2. Kids

Our kids are now at the ages where it seems like they always have something going on. Sometimes, I feel like the kids’ extracurricular activities take up half the schedule! During conference time, it can be tricky to figure out timing.

One thing I do is ask our kids’ coaches and dance teachers if missing or making up practice is possible. You would be surprised at how many say it is okay, especially if there’s nothing major happening that week! I think it’s important that our kids are with us. It makes them aware of what we value and allows them to learn and grow, as well. If missing or making up the practice is not possible, then we arrange for someone to help us out with pick-up or drop-off for those times.

3. Home

I’ve learned to give myself grace in this department. I remember, years ago, I would stress out trying to hurry up, make dinner, clean the house, get homework done and feed the whole family, all in a limited timeframe. Then a friend gave me some advice that changed it all. Do it all ahead of time!

The weekend before conference starts, our family cleans up the house (with some “do we have to” moments from the kids, of course) and we make sure that the laundry is done. Yes, it will get messed up during the conference week (this is where cutting yourself some slack comes into play), but you will be able to have a better handle on things if you aren’t starting from behind!

Secondly, the day before conference begins, my husband and I do our meal-prep for the week. This was a total game-changer! We make simple, easy meals (naturally, we search Pinterest for many of these ideas) and we tag-team the meal prep. This has saved us so much time and energy during the week. I’m able to get home, pop something we prepped onto the stove or into the microwave and everyone has time to actually eat. In fact, this has worked so well that we actually kept it going and incorporated it into our regular routine.

So, these are some things that we’ve found that help our family during the busy weeks, and especially leading into conference week. Putting these simple things into practice allows us to fully lean-in and focus on everything we want to get out of service! You can do it, too!

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