June 20

From Bored Housewife to Tranquil Domestic Goddess in 3 Easy Steps

Agonizing, bone-aching boredom.  Stay-at-home moms often report intense boredom being their number one challenge.  As a result, many become depressed.  Some get themselves into trouble.  Neither of those options is good, so let’s discuss ways to go from bored housewife to tranquil domestic goddess in 3 easy steps.
How is it possible to have so much to do and yet be so bored?  It’s simple.  The boredom does not come from having too much free time. Oh how we wish!  It comes from the repetitive nature of what we have to do every day.   The cycle of cook–feed–wash dishes is never ending, and the pile of laundry never shrinks.  It is easy to become overwhelmed with monotony and discouraged with hopelessness.   So how do we combat this tendency?     First by changing our mindset. Then by changing how we approach housework, and lastly by having goals that extend outside of the confines of our homes.   Sounds simple, right?  Well, it really is.  If you approach it one step at a time.  Let’s start with the mindset change.

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Why are you home in the first place?   I am not talking about the “because I can’t afford daycare” reason.  There is something bigger or you would have found a way to get an outside job.  Why have you decided to stay at home while your spouse goes off to work every day?  Grab a notebook and write down all the reasons.  Don’t over think it.  Just keep writing until you hit the one that gives you an “ah ha” feeling.  Write until you get goosebumps or feel giddy or maybe even get teary-eyed.  You’ll know when you’ve hit upon “the one.”    I am purposely not going to give suggestions here because it’s important that this be entirely of your own creation.   You have to find and know and believe that one reason to the level of conviction.  It has to be the one that resonates with your soul.  So go do that now, and then come back here when you finish.    Got one?  Good!

Once you have “the one,” write it on its own paper and post it on the refrigerator where you can see it and be reminded of what it is that you are really doing every day.   And it’s not about making beds or doing laundry.  It’s about that core value or conviction that you’ve uncovered.  That is what is going to carry you through those tough days.   When you are having a down moment, go over to your refrigerator and instead of opening it and looking in for something to eat to quell the boredom (for the twentieth time today), just read your paper.  Close your eyes.  Breathe.  Now you’ve changed your mindset.   Now we are ready to move on to the day-to-day things you can do to manage the rest.

So let’s talk domestic goddess.  What is that anyway?  Well I can tell you what it’s not. It’s not a woman who is perfect at everything to do with keeping house or caring for a family.   There are no perfect women.  (Just look what happened to Martha.)   A domestic goddess is a woman who has a pretty good handle on keeping her house and caring for her family AND has maintained herself and her own identity in the process.  That’s the woman that makes your husband’s heart melt.  And that’s the goal here.   Maintain your home, your family, your marriage and your self.

Let’s start with home.   Household chores become mundane when two things happen.  (1) We forget to be present in the moment, and; (2) We don’t do the chore with the intent to do it the best that we possibly can.   Typically when we are washing dishes, folding laundry, or vacuuming the floors, we are rushing to get it done and thinking.  We are either thinking about something that already happened in the past, or we are thinking about what we will do once we finish, or we are thinking about some other event coming up in the future.  We are almost never thinking about what we are doing right then.  That’s called not being present.  Much of life’s joy is robbed from us by not being present in this moment.

As often as you can, begin to be present in what you are doing.   While washing the dishes, take note of the temperature of the water on your hands.  Look at the way the light reflects off the bubbles.   Note how the soapy water scents the air.  Suddenly you will find little moments of joy in the process.  You will be shocked at how peaceful and content this simple act can make you feel.   Do it with everything.  Sorting laundry, unpacking groceries, scrubbing the toilet.   Be in the moment.

Part 2, do the chore with the intention of doing the very best job of it that you can.   If you are going to clean that toilet, intend to do it until it sparkles.   If you are going to make that bed, do it so that any Army sergeant would be proud.   You will come out of your cleaning with a sense of accomplishment and pride and not a feeling of drudgery.

Part 3, develop a system for daily cleaning.  Have a “to do” checklist for what you will do daily and for what and when you will do your weekly, monthly, and seasonal chores. Having and following checklists also helps to maintain a feeling of accomplishment.  You can see all that you have completed, but more importantly, you can share your list with your spouse so that he can see all you have done as well.  This extra step helps combat the feelings of “thanklessness” by which some women report feeling plagued.

We’ll talk more about cleaning specifics and checklists as well as how to use them next week.  There’s more to a checklist than you think!  I’ll even include some printable lists for you to use.  Watch for them, but for now let’s move on to maintaining yourself.  (And your sanity).

The last step in combating boredom is to take steps to maintain your identity, your goals, and your self.  That means making time for yourself and your own interests.   That means that mom is just as important as dad and just as important as the kids.   You must schedule time for you and work the kids activities around yours.  You must.  It’s just like when the oxygen mask drops on an airplane and they instruct you to put yours on first.  You have to take care of you so that you are well enough to take care of the children.   If you do not, and your marriage and house and family falls apart, what good have you done?

Get that notebook out again and write down all the things that interest you.  If it’s been a long time since you thought about it, think about what used to interest you.  What hobbies do you have or did you have?  What things do you feel passionate about?   If you could do one thing to change the world, what would it be?   Start getting back in touch with who you were before you were wife and mom.   Here’s the thing.  That person who you used to be is the person that your husband fell in love with.  When he married you he hoped you’d never change.  He is just as interested in you maintaining her as you should be.   Make finding her again a priority.

The biggest challenge with pursuing your interests is going to be finding time.  Where there is a will, there is a way.  You can find snippets of time to delve into your hobbies and dreams, but to make it easier, this is where having a friend in the same situation comes in handy.   A babysitting exchange is incredibly therapeutic for all.   Work in an exchange of 3-4 hours of babysitting once every week.   During her time with the kids, do the things that used to make you feel alive.  Do NOT use the time to run errands, clean, or sleep.  If you feel that you need a block of free time for those things, schedule two babysitting exchanges each week–one for “work” and one for “pleasure.”

This is important too.  During your time to babysit, have a plan of an activity to do with the kids.   Make that time during babysitting a true quality time for the children.   Be sure that your friend does the same.   Here’s why.   You will not feel guilty about leaving the kids with someone else if you know they are having a fun time.  You will be free to enjoy pursuing your interests.    You will also not have guilt about your friend babysitting your children because you will know that you will be doing the same for her and her children later in the week.   It’s a win. win. win.

We’ve begun to scratch the surface of how to combat homemaker drudgery, and during the upcoming weeks we are going to delve further into these topics.  Feel free to leave a comment on your progress and your challenges.   I look forward to reading them!

p.s.  The photo attached was built upon one of my creations.  To combat my boredom, I write and I paint.  This one is called Waiting.  I chose him for this article because he looks bored.  🙂  I hope you enjoy it!  Oh, and also, don’t forget to Like our Facebook page.  You can just click on the “like” button over there in the sidebar ——>  or visit us on Facebook at Modern Day 50s Housewife.

 


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Posted June 20, 2014 by The50sHousewife in category "50's Housewife/ Stay-at-Home Mum", "Good Old Fashioned Parenting", "Love and Marriage that lasts

30 COMMENTS :

  1. By Hayley on

    I am just starting my domestic goddess journey, but really have to say the posts about marriage and how to have a better one really make sense! I found I do so many things on that list and although their for the right reasons could feel it in some ways ruining my relationship. So I went out yesterday and bought an apron and am ready for the housewife life!

    Reply
    1. By The50sHousewife (Post author) on

      Congratulations! You will find that it is a beautiful way to live. Welcome aboard!!! Stay tuned for lots more articles on marriage and relationships. 🙂

      Reply
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  3. Pingback: A Real 1950′s Daily Cleaning Routine

  4. By Scarlett on

    Going to Facebook to check you out there 🙂 honestly I have been feeling miserable (and resentful) in my marriage but I can see a glimmer if hope thank you!

    Reply
  5. By Manoj Chauhan on

    HI i liked your article and I would surely share it with my girlfriend it will be of great help to her

    Reply
  6. By fiona barrie on

    Thanks, you just saved me from going from happy nice mummy to Godzilla! Will be following you from here on in. Thanks for the fridge tip. I don’t tend to take time to eat but am constantly cooking for huge family. Blessings! <3

    Reply
  7. By Alyssa McCord on

    First let me say, it is wonderful to find your blog. I have searched for months for a good resource for improving my skills as a housewife. About 6 months ago I realized I LOVE being a housewife. Not as a “until my kids grow up” or “until I finish school” or “until I find something better” but I love it.

    It is very sad but not many understand the desire to “keep house”. Almost daily I get the questions, “but don’t you WANT to work?”, “are you going to school at least?”, “aren’t you bored?”. Sometimes it makes me feel inadequate. It makes me feel dumb or not good enough for anything else. But that’s simply not true. I LOVE what I do. I love cooking, cleaning, ironing, shopping. I love the messy yogurt baby and the box top meetings for the school.

    It took me about 3 days to read the above article. Instead of immediately writing down my reasons I thought and thought and thought. Then I just sat down and wrote. Just like you said it would it hit me and brought me to tears.

    I have implemented a few changes (hot water with lemon each morning, adding a smoothie, salad and veggies before meals, making a checklist and organizing drawers) and it feels fantastic!

    I have a long way to go to get to where I would like to be but instead of beating myself up I am now viewing it as any career. I’m early into this one, my baby is 13 months, but I will grow into it and as I get more experience my house and family will reflect it.

    Thank you so much for your blog.

    Reply
  8. By Sonja on

    I have highs and lows in my quest to be a domestic goddess. We’re still in the baby producing stage (#3 is on its way any day now), and I find my pregnancy fatigue a real routine killer. I thrive on routine, but seems like the past 5 years have been chaotic at best. How does a domestic goddess thrive in major life changes like deaths in the family, births, relocating, renovating, changing roles (elderly care), financial strains, etc? I do enjoy taking my role as housewife to the career level and professionalism you describe, but can’t seem to maintain it through rough times. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. By The50sHousewife (Post author) on

      Ah, well first, you cut yourself some slack. Next, you ask for help when you need it. There are no super humans here. Third, schedule at least an hour or two each week just for you. And lastly, do your best every day. What more can you do?

      I think maintaining a positive attitude is the biggest challenge and that comes from reminding yourself often of what is right in your world even when so many things around you are less than perfect.

      You also have to shift gears on which of your domestic skills you are going to shine in at one time. Sometimes it will be your sparkling clean home. Other times it will be your mothering skills. And still other times it will be how creative you get with household financial assistance.

      Dont beat yourself up. Take one thing at a time and do that one thing very, very well.

      Good luck!

      Reply
  9. By Arielle Taylor on

    I’m moving in with my fiance in a couple days and I’d like to get started on my domestic goddess routine before we start considering kids. Thank you so much for this!

    Reply
  10. By xdress50shousewife on

    Well I’m not a wife, don’t have one either, nor am I a woman.

    But still I like your writings about the journey from bored housewife to Domestic Goddess…
    Together with your post about the real 1950’s daily cleaning routine.

    Often I feel housework is boring but incidentally when I cross-dress at home I have nothing to do?!

    I have to admit that:
    – I feel interested, inspired & challenged by the idea of keeping house like a real fifties housewife
    – I need to revamp my home cleaning efforts
    – I know feelings of boredom, drudgery & resistance regarding lots of house chores
    – I look forward to having a truly comfortable, clean, beautiful & above all PEACEFUL home

    So I asked myself why would it not be able for a single man to keep his home as “exceedingly tidy and well-managed” like a real 1950’s housewife did?

    To be honest, I identify as a man, I like women, but somehow the role society traditionally desires of men does not completely suit me…

    For example, I always strive for harmonious relationships and am not very good at dealing with stress. I’d rather have a happy and peaceful life than a life full of adventure & competition.

    I have a secret desire that only few people know. Sometime I temporarily want to imagine and “play” that I am a woman. Just at home, in private, alone. I do want to dress the part, as good as I possibly can being a man…

    About a week after I found your site, I found a lovely on-line shop with vintage retro fifties ladies clothing, and in sizes that fit me too !!! (Size 20 UK)

    And then I decided to make a deal with myself. I found some wonderful 50’s dresses and earrings & allowed myself to buy them. Now the deal is that every day for the next 30 days I am to really dress the part of a true fifties lady but also really work the part. 3 hours a day. Every day. Just as an experiment. The housework needs to be done anyway. Why not make it a bit of fun?

    And it works! Monday May 11th was my first 50’s “housewife”day. While dressed I accomplished tasks I had been delaying for ages and ages!

    Thank you for inspiring me for this special project!

    I do hope I did not offend anyone and would LOVE any support!

    “Georgina” 😉

    Reply
  11. Pingback: All kinds of modern day housewives :) | Part-time cross-dressed "HOUSEWIFE"

  12. By Alyssa McCord on

    Can you share that website? I have been searching for clothes that fit me! I too feel that if I dress the part it may help. The question “how do you feel in ratty yoga pants…?” has stuck with me. I don’t feel nice in them. But I can’t find something to wear!

    Reply
  13. Pingback: On my way :) | Part-time cross-dressed "HOUSEWIFE"

  14. By Gina on

    It’s a privilege to be home, I’ve certainly learned that over the years. I raised our children, then tried to finish my degree, then tried to work out of the home. Being back home makes me so thankful to be able to be here, and finding my calling of fostering babies is so satisfying. Thank you for your site, I copied the daily cleaning form and am using it. Looking forward to reading all your posts

    Reply
  15. By Janet Ellis on

    I too, like Georgina, have found tremendous pleasure since becoming a 50’s Housewife. Also like Georgina, I am not a wife nor do I have one. I’m a single male that likes to have a nice home. Like most women I find cleaning and other Domestic Goddess chores rewarding when dressed for the part. I have several vintage dresses wit accessories to complete my look. My retro makeup skills nave improved tremendously since I adopted this lifestyle. I pleased with my look as I see myself in the mirror. I’m just so much more comfortable this way. My home has never looked better. I guess it’s the woman’s touch. Thank you for having this wonderful site and I’m so glad I’ve found it.

    Janet

    Reply
  16. By Clarence on

    This is an awesome article. I like it very much. I think that it can help very much people. Congratulations!!!!

    Reply
  17. Pingback: From Bored Housewife to Content Domestic Goddess - The Modern Day 50s Housewife

  18. By Sowmya on

    Such a wonderful post!! I loved the part where you ask your readers to write down why we chose to stay home with the kids!! Sometimes after hours of picking up toys and vacuuming , I find that all my work comes undone within minutes when my little toddler plays around and has a temper tantrum😐😐 That’s the part of housework and being a mum that gets me down , the futility of it all!! I need to keep reminding myself of the reasons why I am doing this and your lovely post has helped a lot. Taking time off to pursue an interest or a hobby is something I haven’t done in a long time. Thanks for reminding me to do so!!

    Reply
  19. By Lydia on

    I wish I’d found you years ago. I chose to be at home with my kids after they were born but sometimes I thought I was going out of my mind with the boredom. My kids are now at school but still quite young. We have a small family business that I’m helping with as everyone else in the family has full time jobs, so now I’m juggling both, but your schedules really help me fit everything in and I can still be there for the kids. Thank you so much for helping it would all be a lot tougher without you x

    Reply

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