When the mental load becomes too much, focus on this one thing

“The mental load is too much and I’m frozen with overwhelm.”

Does that sound familiar? The mental load of motherhood is real and mums are still trying to figure out how to solve it.

They’re speaking about it, posting about it and unfortunately some are suffering in silence. The mental load can be debilitating. It can make you feel like you’re not enough - even when you couldn’t imagine doing even one more thing.

How do you spend time with your family, keep on top of your budget, fold laundry, do the groceries, cook food, exercise, be social, do all your work and still find some amount of time in the day left for you?

HOW do you do it all?

Well sometimes, you don’t. 

There are going to be times when you’re a supermum and can manage to do everything. And there are going to be times when you need to take a step back and just stop. Take a step back. And reset. Because trying to do it all will affect your mental and emotional wellbeing.

It’s in those times, that you should focus on that one thing that will actually make a difference in your week, and let some of the other things go.

It’s easier said than done, but once you master it, it’s highly effective. To give you an idea of exactly how to make this work, we've outlined three key steps below:

1. Write down every single thing you need to get done this week.
  • The big things - work, social plans, time to yourself.
  • The everyday things - cooking, washing, social plans, paying bills, etc.
2. What is the one thing that you can’t avoid doing because the consequences would be too significant? For example:
  • You have to meet a work deadline or you’d be letting your team down. 
  • Your child is sick and they really need your full attention.
  • You just need some time to yourself or you’re going to burn out completely.
3. How can you either re-prioritise other things, avoid doing them, or reduce the attention you give to them so you're just focused on that one thing?
    • Can you make throw-together meals so you don’t have to cook or wash up as much this week?
    • Can you postpone plans with friends or relatives to free up some time?
    • Can you leave all the (clean) washing on the line and just take clothes off it every morning?
    • Can you leave the dishes in the sink overnight and just deal with them when you have time?

    Remember - this is not about your ‘ideal’ situation. And this won’t be how you operate forever. It’s about letting go of less important things in this moment. So you can survive and move forward. So you can make room for the one thing that really matters.

    If you focus on everything, you achieve nothing.

    So the next time you feel like the mental load is just too much and you just can’t take another step forward, try the strategy above and let us know if it helps.