It’s Time to Make Time for Yourself

You work like crazy all week. You are running blindly on this treadmill that doesn’t stop. You get to the weekend, and what are the first things you do? Clean the house. Grocery shop. Laundry. That’s right. You’re still working.

What’s wrong with this picture?

There’s a reason why they say “Stop and smell the roses,” because there’s truth behind the cliche.

My message today is about learning to value where you are right now, to stop the life treadmill madness, and to find ways of enjoying yourself and your time.

Wiktionary defines “stop and smell the roses” as taking time out of one’s busy schedule to appreciate the beauty of life.

Like many of you might be, I am also guilty of not stopping and smelling the roses. My life has been accelerating at incredible speed for about 2-3 years and stress has been my norm. I just know that I don’t take enough time for really enjoyable things.

I am aware of how unhealthy this is and I try. The one thing I try to do regularly for myself is to leave the house for a little walk to see the outside world. During spring and summer I walk by the community garden and identify plants. That may sound nerdy, but you know, I love it and it makes my heart pound. It’s a little bit of quiet special in my otherwise insanely busy day.

You have to ask yourself, Is this pace really worth it? For me, yes, and no. There are certain things I have to do in order to get to the finish line of my goals. So, I look at these stressful times as temporary. And I suppose that’s okay, to a point, however, it’s so easy to get caught up in our crazy. You lose perspective of your life as a whole while being so caught up in the whirlwind of your daily activities.

I so look forward to the weekend, and am so happy Saturday morning, feeling the freedom of weekday stress. Every weekend my husband (who is as busy as I am) and I talk about the weekend plans. We start the talk with “What do I HAVE to get done this weekend?” And so our list starts with our must do’s by the end of the weekend. And so what happens is any fun, or connection with my husband falls to the b-list… if there’s time left. WHAT??? NO! There is so much wrong with this scenario. This has to stop.

So last weekend, knowing how emotionally unhealthy this is, we looked up some fun things to do in the city and spent all day Saturday doing them. It was magic. It just made me so happy and filled my soul. Yet, it also made me sad because I realize how I spend my days most of the time. And decided that this needs to stop. I need to stop and smell the roses too.

I’m beginning to listen to my own advice, and want to share it with you as well. There are lots of ideas, but I narrowed them down to 5, hoping that you too can embrace these changes. We all need it.

First, and most important, be present. Slow down and start to be aware of your surroundings and senses. This will help with the rest of these tips.

Either with your partner, or yourself, write down your priorities (have-to’s) for the day or weekend.

Write down priorities of your want to do’s for the day or weekend.

Combine the lists and write the top 3-5 things that include both have to’s AND want to’s that you can realistically do. Try to schedule them in – like 11:00 AM, clean. 12:30, go for a hike, etc.

5. Remind yourself not to cheat. This is for you, your soul and your health.