When you wake up in the morning does your to-do list play in your head? Even worse, do your “to-do’s” wake you up in the middle of the night. Everywhere I turn and everyone I talk to seems to say they are very busy. In fact, the answer to the question “How are you?” is usually “fine” or “busy.” There are so many things we all want to accomplish and there just doesn’t seem to be enough time. Or is there? Who put the time restrictions in place? Are they self-imposed? Dictated by our children’s schedules? Our Boss? What can we change? More importantly, what is lost as our days are adrift in a sea of busyness, facebooking, emailing, texting, phone conversations, and driving? We lose ourselves,as most of us don’t make time to take care of our bodies, mind and spirit.
We all know and have heard a gazillion times that if we don’t make time to take care of ourselves, we won’t have anything left to give others. As much as you don’t like to hear it I am going to say it again: you need to take care of yourselves to make sure you are there for the important people in your life. Fine you say, I am ready! But where do I start? Here are some steps you can take to take charge and take care of yourself.
1. Nourishment: Figure out what nourishes you. What activities recharge your batteries and give you the energy to face each day and obstacle with a smile? What do you remember doing as a child that made you happy? What activities bring out your inner child? Is it dancing? Singing? Art? Music? Reading? Walking? Yoga? Exercise? Meeting with friends?
2. Permission: Now give yourself permission to take time to do the things you love, the things that nourish you. Life is more meaningful when we experience joy. After all, isn’t that why we are here?
3. Schedule: Now that you have picked what brings you joy, and you have given yourself permission, put it on your calendar. Carve out the me time and make sure you treat that appointment with yourself as important as any other event on your calendar.
4. Rinse. Repeat. Now look at your scheduled activities of joy and review what worked for you, just as you would any other activities on your calendar. Change what you need to. A new time? A new place? Or a new activity? Now put those changes on your calendar and do it all again!
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