Have you ever wondered what an excellent homemaker’s day looks like? You may imagine perfectly arranged table settings, a pantry stocked with staples that can last the family many months, a sink that never has dirty dishes for long, and a play area that is always neat and tidy. Are you also imagining a Mum who always has a smile on her face, and a wife who gives foot massages every night?
Well, if you are working towards achieving perfection, it will not take long for you to be discouraged and disappointed. However, let me suggest to you that there are 7 core daily habits that can bring your homemaking to a deeper level of excellence – one that is not defined by the standards of this world, but of God’s.
All of us have habits. Whether these are good habits or poor ones – that is another story. Also, our habits form a legacy that we leave behind. What behaviors are your children observing from your daily choices? How do you respond to stressful situations? Wherever you are at your homemaking, there is always room for cultivating better habits, and I hope these will serve as an inspiration for you.
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7 Daily Habits of Excellent Homemakers
(1) Excellent homemakers choose to trust God with their schedules.
It is so important that we have a structure for our days. This gives us a smooth flow to running our homes and helps our children know what to expect. But our schedules should only be a skeleton for the day. Ultimately, we need to trust that God has His plans for us each day, and we need to flow along with his promptings instead of stubbornly holding onto a fixed mindset of how our day should go.
Having a framework yet being sensitive to what God is leading you to do will give you the confidence to tackle day to day tasks, yet with the understanding that it is okay if the list does not get completely checked off. Sometimes, I do not get anything checked off at all! But if that was because I had something else that God convicted me to do that day, I would still see that as a success.
After all, we are to live a life of faith.
Life has its ups & downs
(2) Excellent homemakers find joy and humor even in difficult situations.
An excellent homemaker has a realistic understanding of life and its ups and downs. They have emotional moments and discouraging times, but by and large, they are able to find joy in daily life and have an authentic sense of humor.
I used to have a very caring and hospitable colleague. No matter how negative the circumstances seemed to be, she would have a cheery disposition about her and find something light-hearted to say. We frequently held work gatherings at her place simply because her home was such a warm and loving place. You may be surprised to learn that she was a single lady, yet her homemaking skill was excellent. It was truly her attitude that made the world of difference.
Thanksgiving is Powerful
3) Excellent homemakers give thanks intentionally.
Closely related to point 2 is intentional thanksgiving. Have you ever found yourself in a vicious cycle of complaints and grumbles? I have been there too. It is such a drain on our emotions and skews our perspective to lean too much on the negative. It tends to put you in a slump that is so hard to come out of.
But when you choose to shift your focus to that of gratitude – even for the seemingly small things – something inside of you changes. You see things with greater clarity, you become more motivated to think of solutions, and you feel more hopeful about your situation.
Thanksgiving is powerful.
1 Thessalonians 5:18
“give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (NIV)
Choosing to give thanks helps us to surrender and trust God to see us through the daily grind and difficult times. This then helps us focus back on what we can do, and follow through with our responsibilities with a sense of resilience.
(4) Excellent homemakers keep the big picture in mind.
It is easy to get lost in the tiny details of home-life. Meal planning, fixing the toilet sink, scheduling dental appointments, grocery shopping, and tons more errands to run. After a while, everything feels so mundane and purposeless.
Hence, it is crucial that we keep the big picture in mind. Remember your purpose as a mother and as a homemaker. Beyond the dishes, beyond the wiping of snotty noses, beyond the putting up of home decor – we have an important role to play.
Books I love
Becky Thompson says in her book “Hope Unfolding” (pg. 10) – “Friend, there is only one way that we are going to have the strength to keep going. There is only one way that we are going to have all it takes to love our families with the love that they deserve, the love we so desperately want to give them. We must become rooted in the Truth of who God is calling us to be by hearing and believing the Truth of who He says we already are.”
Remember that you are wonderfully made by God for a very special purpose that only you can fulfill. Let your identity be firmly rooted in who God says you are and know that your mothering has a purpose – way beyond what you may expect.
Cheryl Mendelson writes so beautifully in her book “Home Comforts” (pg. 7) – “Being at home feels safe; you have a sense of relief whenever you come home and close the door behind you, reduced fear of social and emotional dangers as well as of physical ones. When you are home, you can let down your guard and take off your mask. Home is the one place in the world where you are safe from feeling put down or out, unentitled, or unwanted. It’s where you belong, or, as the poet said, the place where, when you go there, they have to take you in. Coming home is your major restorative in life.”
See how important your homemaking is to your loved ones? 🙂
(5) Excellent homemakers give themselves the grace to start all over again.
Expecting perfection – even for a single day – will be sure to disappoint. We live in a fallen world where sin abounds, and mistakes and human imperfection happen all the time. But thank God for the grace that is more than sufficient for us to start all over again every time we fail. Rely on His grace to pick yourself up and start afresh. Don’t put your hope in what you can do, but remember the real Hope we have in Christ – His strength will show up in our weaknesses.
So even if you have had the worst day as a Mum, and you wonder why God gave you these little children, pour your heart out to Him who loves you and He will strengthen you for another day ahead. God will never leave us nor forsake us, and He only has good plans for our lives. Your life is worth living well, so don’t be stuck in the cycle of discouragement.
Fix your eyes on God, and He will give you the grace to say, “Okay, let me try again.”
(6) Excellent homemakers are lifelong learners.
Excellent homemakers are well aware of their strengths and weaknesses. They are in tune with reality and know what they are good at and what they need help in. The remarkable thing about them is that they never stop learning. They recognize the need to hone their skills for the benefit of others, so that they are better able to be patient, and can create a warm environment for their loved ones.
When I first got married, I was not a good cook at all. I had no idea how best to keep a grocery budget, where to look for the best deals, and how to cook meals that were delicious, healthy and wouldn’t eat too much into that month’s budget. There were so many hits and misses. More misses than hits, really.
So I focused on learning – learning to be prudent, to compare prices at different supermarkets, and to keep practicing a variety of recipes so that I could get better at them. I loved learning from other Mums and one of my favorite ways has always been through online courses.
Being a busy stay-at-home Mum, I don’t have the luxury of attending classes in person. Plus, most of such classes (even cooking ones!) can be quite expensive. So signing up for online courses that don’t have a hefty price tag to them makes me happy, since I can learn at my own pace and so far – all of these courses that I’ve taken give lifelong access. These have been worthy investments.
Besides “My Homemaking Mentor” (which enrollment is currently closed), I’m a big fan of Crystal Paine’s “Make Over Your Mornings” 14-day course. This course is designed to help you rebuild the very foundation of your day, and help ignite a new sense of passion and purpose in your lives (all in only 15 minutes a day!). Go check it out. 🙂
(7) Excellent homemakers take good care of themselves.
Lastly, self-care. If you have been reading my blog in the past few weeks, you will know that this topic is very close to my heart. Mums, don’t neglect your needs. If we want to wisely steward our children and be a blessing to our husbands, we have to know what we need and how to fulfill them.
I know how it feels like to run on empty. When I’m overwhelmed or close to burning out, I get grumpy, I lose my temper and get irritated at the smallest things. There is no motivation to get anything done, and I just feel so unappreciated, unproductive and resentful.
That is no way to live. When we prioritize taking care of ourselves, we show our children a much healthier way to live.
Give from rest, not stress
Yes, there will be stressful times and there will be days when we still lose it. But there will be a difference in your perspective when tough times hit. You will be better equipped to handle intense emotions from your children’s tantrums because you have first taken the time to rest and fill up your own love tank. You will have more capacity to sit down and listen to your husband talk about his work problems because you have taken steps to be patient with yourself and your love tank is filled.
So if you have not signed up for the FREE 6-day email series “Space for the Mama’s Heart to Rest”, do so HERE! Serve your loved ones from a place of rest, not stress.
Hey, in no way am I implying that I practice these habits every day. 😉
This list of 7 habits should not be adding pressure to your already busy lives. May you simply use it as an inspiration to reflect and grow.
It is not easy, but by His grace, it is possible for us to cultivate better, more godly habits that help us in our daily living. So let us press on and live a life of love, joy, and excellence!
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