Thankfully, I’ve learned over the years that taking time to care for myself, and making that a priority, is one of the best things I can do for my business, my friends and family, and for myself!
Of course, I had to learn it the hard way. There were times when relaxation, meditation, and just plain “fun” kept getting pushed to the bottom of my to do list because I just didn’t have time. I thought there was far too much for me to do each day to take 30 minutes for a walk or even 10 minutes to meditate.
I currently live in Pennsylvania and suffer from S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder) . Sometimes known as “seasonal depression,” S.A.D. causes people who suffer from it to experience depleted energy and sometimes depressive symptoms at the same time each year, most commonly in the winter. When I returned to Pennsylvania to live, it didn’t take me long to learn that I must make going to the gym, keeping my Ott light on, and regular meditation a part of my schedule. Those activities help to reverse S.A.D. and this past winter, I felt much better than the prior winter because I took better care of myself by making those activities a priority when preparing my schedule.
Now I know that when I sit down to review and plan my schedule for the next week or two, I have to schedule time for self-care. Whether it’s a daily walk, a meditation practice, lunch with friends, or time for a massage, I make an appointment with myself in my calendar for that time. When setting work schedules, I treat my self-care time just like an important client appointment. After all, I am an important client.
The bottom line is, if I don’t take care of myself, who will? I also suffer from sciatica. It is mostly in remission, and as a result, I forget that I even have it! Recently, I had an abundance of events that required me to drive my car two or three hours each way. Driving for an extended period of time is historically an activator for sciatica, and I forgot! The reminder is painful, so this week I have taken extra self care/recovery time to bring my body back into balance. We can’t expect others to respect us and our time, if we don’t respect and care for ourselves.
Take a moment to look at your schedule for the next day or two. Where do you have time scheduled for self-care? It can be as simple as 10 or 15 minutes a day for a walk or coffee with a friend or even time to read a novel or magazine for fun. Remember to put an appointment with yourself and for yourself at the top of the list when preparing your weekly schedule and you’ll be surprised how much these little chunks of time will help you feel better and be more productive.