You hear it all the time…
- You need to take care of yourself.
- You're too burned out and need some YOU time.
- You can't forget about YOU
Taking time out for yourself means taking time away from everything else… like your career or your family… do you really have time for that?
Realizing that, you feel as though there just isn't enough time in the day, and eventually you'll get around to doing something you like that makes you happy and makes you feel refreshed. And then… it never happens… you end up procrastinating, putting your needs on the back burner, even when you're in complete burnout mode and need YOU time the most.
You cannot help others or be fully present at home or in your career if you don't help yourself first or find a way to help yourself through your work. So, no… focusing on yourself is not selfish. Please make sure you take time for you!
Self-care is crucial to success!
You need to regularly schedule it into your lifestyle or it won’t happen (or won’t happen often). And let's face it.. you can’t pour from an empty cup. You NEED something fulfilling in your life. Something that makes you feel good and gives you purpose. Something that makes all the other stressors of life worth the effort and time you put into them.
Taking some time out to care for yourself doesn’t need to cost you major expense or time… though sometimes that is a good idea… spend a little more… take a longer vacation away from home… it will be worthwhile in the long run.
Ideas to take care of yourself:
- Spa Day… especially if you're not DIYing it. Take some time for a manicure, pedicure, massage, yoga, guided meditation, or facials.
- Schedule sleeping hours. If you have troubles sleeping, try indulging in some essential oils like lavender and tangerine to help you relax and calm your mind.
- Schedule physical exercise. I know this can be tough, but do it for you… even if you have kids hanging on you, or are talking with clients on the phone while embracing a few yoga poses or lifting some light weights at your desk.
- Meditate for an hour a day… even if that means 20 minutes when you first wake up and the rest right before going to sleep at night. If you feel you're too busy to meditate at all… schedule in 2 hours. If that makes you panic, keep in mind Parkinson's Law and find a way to outsource or become more efficient so you can make the time to meditate.
- Celebrate even the littlest victories (even if that only means you washed, dried, AND put away your laundry in the same day)
- Surround yourself with positive people
- Laugh… as much as possible…
- Engage in a hobby. Do something fun. Something that you deeply enjoy, but often feel like you wouldn't have time for. Something that makes you feel refreshed. You know… that thing you'd be doing if you didn't have to worry about money.
- Maintain a healthy lifestyle, filled with quality foods and free from toxins. Too often companies slip toxic ingredients into everyday items (legally) that can take a toll on your physical and mental health. Removing those toxins from your life can produce significant results in boosting your energy, helping you sleep better, allowing you to be more productive, and enabling you to have better focus and clarity.
- Delegate little tasks when you’re able to (even if it doesn’t get done your way) or outsource completely. If it isn't something that ONLY YOU can do… find some help.
- Don’t stress over change… often changes can be blessings in disguise without us realizing it. When you are faced with a change that causes that bit of anxiety, look for any hidden opportunities that change could produce.
- Schedule in some time outside… whether you go hiking, for a walk, lounge in the sand at the beach, or just sit on a picnic table somewhere. Never underestimate the benefits of hanging out outside with your feet in the grass (or sand).
- Schedule in dedicated time for work, family, and YOU. To make this happen, I suggest using a quality planner. If you work from home, be sure to schedule in you time and family time before setting your work schedule.
- Schedule in some time for personal development. This is often overlooked, but your level of success will only grow as much as you do. If you feel stagnated, then you need to grow yourself before you will be able to progress personally or professionally.
- Set little goals for the day/week. Those massive goals tend to weigh you down are more easily crushed when you break them down into 90-day goals, then those goals get broken down into 30-day tasks, and then those tasks get broken down to weekly to-do lists. Don't overwhelm yourself… just take it one step at a time.
- Avoid multi-tasking. Seriously. It doesn't do you as much good as you think it might.
- Learn the importance of saying “NO.” Don't be a “yes man.” That will for sure prevent you from having time to do anything.
For me… sometimes just taking the time in the morning to put on makeup and get dressed helps my mindset for the day, even when I work from home on the phone or behind the computer and no one is going to see me. Just taking the time and effort spent on myself is often enough to make my day go smoother and keep my spirits up.
JUST SAY NO
Did you notice that stop multitasking and saying no were on that list?
Too often we spread ourselves too thin, wanting to do everything all the time… thinking we need to do more than one thing at a time in order for anything to get done.
My friend, that is a quick way to fast track yourself to total burnout!
Saying “no” is often more important than saying yes. Granted, a firm “no” often leaves someone else hanging… and if you can help, by all means help if you feel compelled to. However, don’t feel obligated to be everything to everyone all the time.
Stop the Multitasking
I remember sitting in one of my psychology classes when I was working towards my undergraduate degree. My class had an in-depth conversation about the mental limitations that occur when you multitask.
Turns out you cannot spend 100% of your brain capacity on numerous tasks. You cannot even come close to 100% capacity when focusing on numerous tasks, even when there are tasks you’re not actively thinking about. Instead you have a percentage for each task, plus the percentage of brain power it takes to shift back and forth… you end up operating at a total of 60% or less, depending on the number of things you’re trying to cram into completing at the same time. That isn't 60% on each task… that is 60% total. And no… the percentage doesn't change if you're “really good at it.” That is just your mind trying to justify running itself ragged.
Instead, focus on one thing at a time for a shorter amount of time. You’ll be much more efficient and won’t worry so much about how you managed to get so little done. Try it. Instead of spending 4 hours working on 5 things, indulge in some Parkinson”s Law and set a timer. See how much productive you are when you have a timeline.
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