The daily hour allowance is the same for all of us, 24 hours per day. The difference is in how we use those hours.
I’ve read from many blogs recently how people have broken down that 24 hours. It helps to realize how we use our days, where we spend the hours and what could be improved.
Here’s my normal weekday:
First the biggest hour eaters. I need a decent amount of hours for sleep so that I don’t get cranky and can function, so sleep takes normally 8 hours of my 24 hours, leaving me with 16 hours awake. As I usually won’t fall asleep immediately, I need to go to bed 15 min earlier. I spend 8 hours at work, and this leaves me with 7 hours 45 min for all the rest.
Then the necessary time eaters. Commuting (taking kids to daycare and going to work, and leaving work and picking up the kids) takes total of 1 hour daily, leaving me with 6 hours 45 min. In the morning we wake up 45 min before we leave the house (we don’t eat breakfast at home, kids eat at the daycare and adults at work during the first coffee break, this maximises the sleep time, we just do the morning freshing up and get dressed), leaving me with 6 hours.
After we get back home from work, we prepare food which usually doesn’t take more than half an hour. Eating and cleaning up the table takes another 30 minutes, leaving me with 5 hours. Before putting the kids to sleep they eat porridge, and we adults eat later after the kids have gone to sleep. In total these evening “snacks” take 45 minutes to prepare, eat and clean up, leaving me with 4 hours 15 minutes.
The other routines we do daily are the evening baths, which usually take about 30 min from undressing to pyjamas on them, leaving me with 3 hours 45 min. Before bath we watch together the one hour kids programme and/or play together, leaving me with 2 hours 45 min. The last routine is the daily house hold management: laundry, dishes and other daily chores, which usually don’t take more than half an hour to finish. After all this I have 2 hours 15 min for everything else.
If I haven’t had my shower at the same time the kids have their bath, or if I’d wish to do my nails or something like that, I need to take 30 min for my personal hygiene, leaving me with 1 hour 45 min.
And here is the same thing by the clock (we have very strict sense of time in our family and function like a clock):
- 00:00-06:45 sleep
- 06:45-07:30 morning routines
- 07:30-08:00 commute
- 08:00-16:00 work
- 16:00-16:30 commute
- 16:30-17:30 dinner
- 17:30-18:30 tv&play
- 18:30-19:30 bath, evening snack, bedtime story
- 19:30-20:00 daily chores
- 20:00-20:30 shower/sauna or nails
- 20:30-20:45 adults evening snack
- 20:45-22:30 FREETIME
- 22:30-24:00 sleep
So at the moment how do I use that a bit under 2 hours? Usually I watch some tv with the hubby and we go through our days, this being our quality time together. As I am morning person, I cannot do much in the evenings and honestly, I can’t think of exercising at this hour of day. During the winter it is really dark (we get only few hours of light a day) and I need more sleep but now that it starts to be light again (in the mid summer it never gets dark), maybe I should wake up a bit earlier to go for a 30 min jog or something, before all the rest wake up. That would do really good for me!
The weekdays are definitely hectic but we try to sit back and relax, and enjoy the kids and our life during that one hour of daily play/tv time. But breaking down our normal day like this makes me really realize how hectic everything is. Having about 1 hour 45 min “unplanned” time is not a lot, especially because life happens and you should have at least 1-2 hours of flexibility time to use for those unexpected events.
I proritize my family and want to spend as much time with my kids now that they’re small. They spend more time in the daycare than with us (kind of our choice as we’re both working, but this is normal in our society and having a huge house loan to pay requires money…) so I have decided not to have any hobbies during workdays that would consume these precious moments with my kids. After the kids start to have “their own life” with friends and hobbies, I can think this again.
But for now this 24 hour allowance I’ve broken into pieces in this post really showed me that as I don’t have more hours, I cannot do more. And the point in here is that I should realize that as I do not have more hours than anyone else, I shouldn’t even think that I should do more! I should be happy with what I have and concentrate on what’s important. At 22-7 it is sleep, at 8-16 it is my work and at all other times it is my kids and family (though the kids always come first!).
Oh this is just so relieving! I do not need to do any more than what I already do! 🙂
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