These days, it seems everyone is BUSY. We strive to have longer TO-DO lists and the longer our lists, the better we feel about ourselves. Our self esteem is based off how busy we keep ourselves and how busy we keep our families. Everyone is in a rush to glorify BEING BUSY.
I think this is especially true with moms and women in general. The more we can pile on our plates, the better we feel next to someone else.
But when we really sit down and think about it, does it make us happy? Or just plain exhausted. We all have responsibilities and as adults, we should definitely take care of them. But, I do believe we need to take time for the things that make us happy as well. It should be one of our responsibilities to take time for ourselves. Because if we don’t, we will eventually burn out.
The biggest thing in my life that makes me happy (besides my family) is reading. I LOVE BOOKS. (and coffee but I believe if I had to pick one, it would be books). I could eventually wean myself off the coffee but books are my therapy. They take me to a different world, get me away from my problems, and even if it’s only for a few minutes, let my mind wander and let me be somewhere else.
I believe GUILT is the number one reason women find it hard to find happiness for themselves. When you are being pulled in a million directions and you want to take time out for yourself, you automatically feel guilty. Guilty that you aren’t spending that moment with your kids, guilty that the laundry isn’t getting done, guilty that you haven’t called your mom, or guilty that you haven’t shown your spouse how much you appreciate and love them. Maybe you are exhausted and need 30 minutes to rest. Maybe you want to go shopping alone at Target. Maybe, all you want is 30 minutes to drink your coffee and catch up on social media.
It’s okay to take time for yourself and make sure YOUR HAPPINESS is a priority.
Here are some useful tips to help you find time for YOUR happiness without neglecting the other areas of your life and making sure you still have time for your responsibilities. Not all of these will work for you. But hopefully there are a few that will help you create some time for yourself.
WAKE UP EARLIER
This may not be for everyone but studies show that people are at their creative best when they wake up earlier. For those that are list makers, this is the perfect time to make a plan for the day. For those that need a bit of quiet, this is the perfect time to get some alone time in. I’m not a morning person but I do enjoy waking up earlier than my family on Saturday mornings to drink a coffee and read a chapter or two before the day starts. Want to start a creative project? Get up a bit earlier than normal and maybe this will get your creative juices flowing.
Check out GIRL BOSS TIPS for ways to wake up earlier.
MAKE TO-DO LISTS
It’s much easier to plan for the day and get an idea of what the day looks like if you make a list and then prioritize everything on that list. You may have 5 things on your list or you may have 50 but this will give you a idea of what your day and week look like. When you prioritize your responsibilities, you give yourself a chance to move things around.
I’m a schedular and I know exactly how long every thing on my to do list will take. My husband on the other hand seems to think he has all day to complete the 100 things on this list and he won’t start until late in the day. We are complete opposites on this but let me tell you how using a schedule and putting things into blocks will help.
With calendar blocking, you schedule all of your responsiblities, including alone time or projects you would like to accomplish. Block out time for everything on your to-do list including time for social media, phone calls, yard work, laundry and even time for yourself. If you block out a portion of your day for everything, you’re much less likely to WASTE time.
MAKE HAPPINESS A PRIORITY
As I stated previously, when you prioritize everything on your to-do list and put all of these responsibilities into blocks, you should include your happiness. Maybe it’s only 15 minutes in the morning to read or an hour at night to watch the news, but putting it on your to-do list and into your schedule will help you make time for yourself.
LEARN TO SAY NO
This is a hard one for me. I am a people pleaser and feel like I should always say yes when someone asks me for a favor. However, if the favor gets in the way of your responsibilities, including the responsibility to yourself, you may need to learn to say no.
Everyone needs help once in a while and it’s so important to help others. There may come a time when you need someone to lend a hand. But learn that saying no doesn’t make you a bad person. Sometimes it’s just not feasible to help out. And if someone is constantly taking advantage of your help, then it may be time to tell them no.
If you’ve blocked out 30 minutes go through the mail and pay bills, then put distractions away. If social media is a distraction, then put your phone somewhere else. Spend the 30 minutes doing what you have scheduled. Once those distractions are removed, you will find that you can get your responsibilities completed much more quickly. When you let the distractions get in your way, time is wasted and you end up feeling defeated at the end of the day.
We are all given so many minutes in the day. Making plans and finding what’s important will help you control the day and find time for yourself.