During the first year of fatherhood, set up a plan on how you and your partner deal with last-minute can’t miss events that crop up in life or at work. For example, what plan do you have in place if an important client comes into town, and insists on taking the team out to happy hour? Let your partner know as soon as possible, that you might be home late and that they may have to make alternate dinner arrangements. Remember that this can also be for your benefit as you may have to stay at home with the baby while your partner also has a work conflict. It’s always better to add these events proactively, or view the calendar to see what is truly a “can’t-miss” when compared with your family responsibilities. Fights and arguments often arise from conflicting work schedules, but the key to working as a team is to communicate plans so that all parties can adjust accordingly. For those reading, please share your communication strategies and let us know how you plan for last minute change.
If you absolutely despise clipping physical coupons, remembering to bring them with you and using them before they expire, then this might be a wise strategy for you. The majority of major grocery store chains and pharmacies now have apps with keyword searchable coupons that you can add and apply automatically with one scan. You will often find multiple discounts on diapers, wipes, toiletries and other baby related items that add up to significant savings over time.
If you’re waiting in a check out line, instead of checking sports scores, texts or social media, use apps that will actually save you money.
Take a moment to think of the times when you were happiest, and most relaxed after accomplishing your goals. Perhaps you met all of your deadlines at work, and the house is completely clean, and you just finished washing your car. You are free because you now have absolutely nothing that you “need” to do. But as a new dad, there is almost always something you “need” to do. While you are washing the dishes, you stop to help your wife find a burp cloth. If you’re cleaning bottles, you might stop to hear if the baby is crying. As a new dad, three simple tasks might take as long as it once took to complete five or six chores. We may feel like the baby is “taking over” and that we can’t get “anything done.” But we need to accept that the baby is an ongoing task magnet. And we’re setting ourselves up for failure by trying to accomplish too much at once.
It’s better to work on only one or two things, and feel relieved when you’re done. Then work on one or two more. Taking on multiple tasks will stress you out. Your mind will begin to associate any task with stress and frustration, and your body language will reflect negatively the next time your partner asks you to help with even simple chores around the house. Next time you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed, politely say that you want to be attentive and that you are happy to help out with everything you can, but you work best if you can only do a few tasks at a time.