We live in a fast-paced world—and it keeps moving faster and faster. Between jobs, kids, friends, family, school, holidays, birthdays, parent-teacher meetings, memes, and meals, it can feel as if there is no time left to do what YOU want to do—there’s no time left for yourself.
But here’s the thing—no matter how busy your day-to-day is, there’s always just enough time to unwind, inhale, exhale and recharge.
Take five minutes for gratitude. Take 15 minutes for a meditation. Take 30 seconds right now and close your eyes—breathe in, breathe out, and think of the last place you visited that was truly beautiful, a place that connected on both a physical and mental level.
Oftentimes we may feel that taking time to do something we love, or to simply relax is selfish. But the truth is, not taking time to do what we love is selfish. It’s bad for our mental and physical health. It can alienate those we love. It can lead to stress, fatigue, and depression. And it can lead to a life lived unfulfilled.
So, what’s it gonna be? A sad and tired life? Or one of joy and gratitude? Let’s dive into the importance of taking time for yourself as well as a few simple ways to turn your day-to-day into day-to-play.
You know that feeling on day three of vacation when suddenly your nervous system goes into “Wow, I feel good” mode? Taking time for yourself to relax, meditate, or do something you love has the same affect on your mental and emotional health. Allocating time to recharge creates a positive mental environment that empowers you to handle all of life’s challenges with more clarity and energy. A positive mental outlook can have a profound effect on your life, giving you the motivation and vigor you need to accomplish whatever you set your mind to.
Stress, lack of sleep, and prolonged inactivity can wreak havoc on your body. Unfortunately, most of us deal with all three of these stressors on a daily basis. Today, we are inundated with the stress of work, managing our family life, our overwhelming connectivity to media, and our constant accessibility. Take time out and eat something healthy and delicious—while sitting down. Make a point to try new methods of exercise like yoga or jogging. Even 15 minutes of physical activity can make a huge difference in your life.
When you take care of yourself, you’re a better person. You’re nicer, you’re more patient, you’re more open—you’re just good to be around. And that means people want to be around you. By taking time for yourself, you are contributing to a better work/life balance—and that means you are prioritizing the people that are important (and essential) to you. By taking a solo walk or hike, or even grabbing a bite to eat alone at your favorite (healthy) restaurant, you’re telling the people you love that you love them. And they’ll love you for that.
When you have time to yourself, you have time to explore. And exploration leads to personal growth and fulfillment. Always wanted to learn how to paint? Do it! Want to learn French? Allez-y!
By taking time to learn new subjects, dive into new hobbies, try new activities/sports, and expand yourself both physically and mentally, you can boost your self-esteem and promote a sense of accomplishment that not only satisfies your soul, but also attracts positive energy from the people who surround you.
Open up your Google calendar and start locking up dates for: meditation, hiking, exercise, reading, making healthy food, learning a new skill, playing, thinking, running, lounging—anything.
Then, stick to it. If you block out 30 minutes a day just for you, you’ll become a new you.
We live in a “Yes” world. Yes to crazy deadlines. Yes to helping friends move. Yes to your kids’ every whim. Yes to events, engagements, hangouts…Yes, yes, yes. NO! If you need to recharge, just say No. Take that time to do what you want to do—your friends, family, and children will understand and you’ll be a better person to all of them.
Conversely, we constantly say No to ourselves. No to doing something we love because we don’t have time. No to being alone and reading when we could be weed-whacking. No to learning French when we could be painting the kid’s bedroom walls aqua.
Say Yes to the things you want to do and you’ll find yourself living a more fulfilled and productive life.
We are all constantly connected to social media, the internet, news, media, Netflix, The Bear, emails, Zooms, Google Meets, and everything else that requires electricity. So, just unplug.
Take some time away from the screen and focus on a tree. Go for a barefoot walk in your backyard and pay close attention to your heels touching the earth. Spend time with your kids and look them in the eye—engage in their natural playfulness. Just be you—not everyone else. It’s a simple and easy way to eliminate stress and keep you focused on what matters most—your own well-being.
Remember taking time for you is also taking time for others. The better equipped you are to handle life both physically and mentally, the better it is for all those who love and support you. So…go read a book. Or lay in the sun. Or get a massage. And do it regularly. You’ll be happy with what you are capable of doing.
Visit the CERAEGM blog for more helpful tips to encourage wellness in your daily life.