Polling Post #4: Oops, I Forgot Myself, Again
Polling Question #4: Do Something For Yourself!
During the Women’s Advancement Compact launch, one of the questions presented was: When was the last time you did something just for you? The answers varied from once a week, once a month, and of course the comical option of ‘are you kidding me?’
While such a response garnered a few laughs, many women could relate to the lack of me time in their lives. Women are so preoccupied with juggling their different roles as parents, daughters, mothers, wives, professionals, etc., that they forget to put themselves as a priority.
Helping Yourself Helps Others
In order to excel at all of your roles, you need to take breaks and slow down. As much as some of us would like to, we have to accept that we cannot do everything all the time; nor should we have to. Studies explain that if you continuously do things for others—only act on reactive time–you start to lose your sense of control. Your brain becomes harder to turn off, which leads to decreased sleep. Such chronic exhaustion increases the release of stress hormones, and your blood sugar, therefore substantially increasing your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and memory problems.
If I haven’t successfully scared you into taking a break, I will try to appeal to your common sense. When you take care of yourself and refuel your energy, you will be happier, healthier, saner, and ultimately better at all of your other roles.
What Do I Do With My ‘Me Time’?
Here are a few tips about what you can do that is just for you! There are little things each day that can help you unwind if you only have 10-20 minutes to spare, such as drink coffee/ tea and read the news, listen to music and sing along (Beware: if you have kids, they will tease you for singing), play with your pet, or take a relaxing bath/ shower. If you are looking for a longer activity try taking a walk with friends, reading a book for fun, working out, taking a nap, or indulging in a spa day!
Whatever you do, the goal is to turn off your brain for those few minutes and relax. My final tip is to listen to your body; sometimes it knows when you need to take a break even before you consciously do.
Leave a comment below about what you will do to unwind!