We are on Day 15 for those who are following along and today I want to talk about taking a time-out for yourself to chill out.
I know what you are going to say…
“I don’t have time to take time for myself!”
You don’t have time NOT to take time for yourself!
You do have time. You have the same amount of hours as anyone else. We all have “time” we simply have the choice for how we each spend it. What we deem important enough to take up those precious hours in our day.
Just to be clear though, I’m not saying to blow off all your responsibilities and check out of life for the whole day (or forever… tempting I know. Although there have been times of extreme where I’ve just completely lost it and needed to get away for a while… but I want to prevent you from reaching that point.)
Taking time for yourself can be fairly short and simple.
- Such as getting up 15 minutes earlier in your day to enjoy a cup of coffee and read your Bible.
- Or going for a walk in the evening after you get home from work.
- Or reading a chapter in that book you keep wanting to read but feel unable to do so.
- Doing something creative such as sewing, writing, singing, crafting, blogging, painting, or whatever it is that your heart longs to do. Do it!
This will require you to sacrifice a bit of yourself in another area of your life, but for the betterment of you and those around you. And make sure you express this to your “better-half” if you have one.
Yes you might be slightly more tired feeling in the morning getting up before everyone else, but do you trust God to give you the energy to think more logically and accomplish more throughout the day because of the time you spent that morning getting still and spending time with God? Just a thought.
Yes you might have to sacrifice by having a load of dirty dishes in the sink before you shoot out the door for your “R&R” for your heart and soul time. Or maybe you sacrifice watching that show in order to edit and arrange that photo album you keep meaning to get to (FYI: multiple studies show watching T.V. or movies is actually not a good stress-buster technique.)
Yes you might have to sacrifice doing other things you would have normally done (clean the floors, fold laundry…) during this forced down-time. But those moments when I’ve picked up that book and read a chapter because I knew my heart and soul needed that more than clean floors, it’s always brought more good to me than harm to me. When I take time-out during the day to reset my nerves and fuel my heart with something I long to do, I become less quick-tempered, less anxious, and there’s more of me left at the end of the day to enjoy (and there is less strive to rush the kids to bed as early as possible… just sayin’).
Oftentimes when I take the necessary steps to setting aside a bit of time for myself each day, whether or not it’s the morning, afternoon, or evening, I have more energy to give others, less stress builds up over time, and a more relaxed state of mind, even if for the moment helps to keep the anxiety in my life from being constant.
Those stressful moments will always arise. There may always be levels of constant stress and anxiety in our lives. But we don’t have to live in that 24-7.
Find ways to be able to take time for yourself to interrupt the chronic state of tension your mind, body and soul is in so you can become a better, more engaged, vibrant, joyful, peaceful, and productive you.