Day 05 – Leave 5 Minutes Early | 31 Day Stress Reduction Challenge

31 Day Stress Reduction ChallengeAs a personal challenge, I have decided to embark on a 31-day challenge to lower my stress level, and make staying at home not so overwhelming. Each day, I will focus on one area of my life that can be cleaned up or addressed to help make my life just a teensy bit easier – and less stressful.

Ok, yes, I have small children. No, I don’t think that leaving earlier will actually happen. No, I am not out of my mind.

You can stop laughing now.

I know, it is one of those “easier said than done” things. You already spend a half hour getting out the front door and 10 minutes getting into the car. But you do have to admit, by now, you know what time to leave.

I know the drop-dead deadline to getting my daughter to dance class remotely on time is 9:54 am. It starts at 10:15 and is about 5 miles away. Yes, I hate Los Angeles.

But I also know that I am corralling everyone into the car, speeding down the street, and – once we are at the school – fighting my daughter into her dance outfit and shoving her into class in those precious few minutes before she decides to be a diva and not go to class that day. I know it will happen at 10:18. It has happened twice.

I also know I opened the door and pushed her into what turned out to be the previous class yesterday because I was so adamant that she be on time.

You really can’t win.

But I also know that if I am pulling out of my driveway at 9:49 am, I am in a totally different world. I am in no hurry down the street, I can talk to a neighbor as I am pulling out. That slow car on the two lane highway doesn’t drive me batty. I am also not fighting a three year old into the proper color tights (that I am not sure when were washed last) at 10:17, feeling like I am diffusing an active bomb.

In short, I am not down to the wire. All of the things that cannot happen when I leave at 9:54 am are minor annoyances. I have time to check my email before running my daughter down the hall to her class, I don’t act like I am in the middle of surgery when I am trying to dress her. I am a different person.

Yes, it takes moving your thousands of alarms on your phone up five minutes (you know, the “wake up”alarm, the “get up now” alarm, the “your kids will be late and you have to talk to someone about being late again” alarm, and the “too late to go, call in sick” alarm), but gosh, those extra five minutes are a gift when you get where you need to be. Can you imagine walking in instead of bursting through the doors at a dead run to be on time?

I can’t, so I will start moving up my warning alarms for starting diaper changes and bottle cleaning. Good thing I am starting to wake up earlier.

Until Tomorrow….

Ready to join in? Here is the series to date!

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More Servings of the Halfway Homemaker


    1. You are ahead of me. My hubby likes the clocks to be ahead, but I like to know what time it really is, I just spend all my time subtracting out 5 minutes if I know the clocks are ahead 🙂

  1. That’s funny. Since we have four almost four year-old children, I can relate. Sometimes we can have the best plans for getting out the door and one will announce (as happened today), I have to go poo poo. So much for getting out the door when we planned!

    1. My toddler is the queen of slowing down when we are in a hurry. She always forgets something after everyone is in the car.

  2. Stress is terrible. Especially when it’s stress about getting there on time and dealing with the traffic. It’s one of the reasons I left the city and I’m more than happy to live a lot stress free-er in a small town.

    1. We are kind of in the city, we are in a beach town, so 5 miles takes 20 minutes. I am definitely on edge driving, but we do have pretty views 🙂

  3. We always make sure to give ourselves way more than enough time. That way when my daughter decides to dance around with her pants on her head instead of getting dressed, it’s not completely stressful! Great tip!

    1. That is great! I shudder when I start to think that it really takes about an hour to get two kids and myself dressed and out the door – fed and groomed – for anything.

  4. 5 minutes really can make all the difference! And you’re right, we all know what time we’re “supposed” to leave by and what would actually be the “best” time to leave by.

    1. Yep, I actually found myself leaving 10 minutes earlier than I needed to today. It didn’t change my day much, but it was a personal victory. I only had one child, so I don’t know if it exactly counted, but still.

  5. I hate being late, so I make to give myself more than enough time. It’s funny though. I’m always the first one to mom group events since it an be so difficult to get out of the house on time for moms.

    1. I am so jelly. I am usually strolling in 5 minutes late, which to me is impressive. I try so hard to be on time for work, but even then, I am just walking in a minute or two before when I wanted to be 15 minutes early.

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