Quick ways to invest in others when you are short on time

Written by Crystal Paine
Published on May 19, 2023

This might bother or surprise some people, but I strive for “good enough” when it comes to  many areas of homemaking. My mantra is, “Just do the best you can with what you have where  you are.” 

The last two years have taught me so much when it comes to accepting my limits. (Having  teens + babies + a lot of medical appointments and therapies will help you figure out your limits very quickly!) 

In my current season of mothering and life, I don’t have as much flexibility or availability  as I once did. But just because I can’t do what I once did doesn’t mean I can’t do something. You  can’t do everything, but you can do something. 

Many days, I might not be able to drop everything and go spend the day with a struggling friend, but I can still send a text to check in, pray for her, and invite her over for an hour. I can’t do everything, but I can do something. 

I might not have hours of uninterrupted time to spend with my husband and kids, but I can still find little blocks of time to talk, listen, and be involved in their lives. I can’t do everything, but I can do something. 

I might not be able to keep my house as clean or organized as I once did, but I can use the little snippets of time I have to pick up, rinse the dishes, and do a little organization (often while  holding a baby or toddler on my hip!). I can’t do everything, but I can do something. 

What can you do? 

Instead of feeling discouraged over what you wish you could do and just don’t have the capacity  for right now, focus on what you can do. If you don’t have extra hours of time to invest in others, use what time you do have to pour into others. These little bits of investment will add up! 

One-minute ideas 

• Kiss your husband for fifteen seconds or longer. 

• Praise your child for something they did recently that showed character.

• Send a friend a quick text to check in.

• Stop and pray for someone who is struggling.

• Look into someone’s eyes and tell them how much you love them.

• Write a two-sentence love note for someone to find as a little surprise.

Five-minute ideas 

• Snuggle up next to your husband and just enjoy being with him. 

• Rock a child and sing to them or read a picture book to them.

• Leave a voice text or message for a friend to tell her you are thinking of her, and maybe even pray for her right in the message.

• Pen a quick handwritten note to tell someone you appreciate them.

• Stop and ask someone how they are doing, then listen well as they respond.

• Play a quick game with an older child, or tell them a funny thing that happened in your day.

• Turn on a song and have a short dance party with your kids.

Let’s stop making excuses for doing nothing or feeling guilty that we can’t do everything.  Instead, let’s put our energy into doing what we can do with the time and capacity we have, right where we are. I can’t do everything, but I can do something. 

Maybe you’re in a season where you have very little energy, time, or capacity. Perhaps you’re struggling with a chronic illness, a huge workload at your job, extra responsibilities at  home, a season of sickness, or a host of other reasons why you just aren’t able to get a lot done right now. 

It’s okay. It will be okay. Do what you can. Give yourself grace. And remember, “It’s  better to do less than you’d hoped than nothing at all.”

Provided from The Time-Saving Mom by Crystal Paine published by Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group. Copyright 2023. Used by permission.

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Crystal Paine

Crystal Paine is the founder of MoneySavingMom.com, host of The Crystal Paine Show podcast, and a New York Times bestselling author. Her desire is to help women across the globe live with more joy, purpose, and intention in their everyday lives. She lives with her husband and six kids in the Nashville, Tennessee, area, where she is actively involved in her local church. Her biggest passions are helping women understand how the gospel can radically transform their lives, raising awareness for foster care, going on adventures with her family (locally, domestically, and internationally), finding great deals at the grocery store, having heartfelt conversations, and trying to read too many books at one time! Crystal’s new book, The Time-Saving Mom, is available now.

Read more about Crystal

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