Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Benefits of "You Time"



My job at the college usually requires me to work about 47 hours per week. That, coupled with my 45 minute commute, leaves little free time on any given day. So what I have gotten into the habit of doing, and it's made such a world of difference, is setting aside a little time each day to myself. Yesterday, for instance, I took an afternoon stroll on my lunch break and walked down to a beautiful meandering stream that runs adjacent to campus. Once there, I sat on a large stone next to the stream and enjoyed about 15 minutes of nothing but the sounds of the birds and the sounds of the stream flowing over the rocks. I returned to work refreshed and re-energized.

Sometimes, usually about every other Saturday, I will go to the cinema by myself and catch an afternoon matinee. It’s a good way to escape from the world for a couple hours and the popcorn’s not bad either. I also hit the treadmill at the gym for 30 minutes every night after work while getting lost in the multitude of 90s songs that I have on my MP3 (don’t judge). It’s a great way to wind down the day and also some great thinking time.

I think it's so important that we make time for ourselves. We often get so caught up in making sure that we're not neglecting other things (work, school, family, etc.) that we end up neglecting the one thing that we should not neglect...ourselves. Perhaps it's because it's in our nature to view devoting time to ourselves as selfish...but nothing could be further from the truth! Think about it, the stress-relieving benefits of a little time to yourself each day will actually make you that much more effective when attending to family, work, and school.

Also, time to yourself is healthy! Make some time for yourself...even if it's 15 minutes per day. It's essential to have some "you time" every once in a while. Will you have to sometimes get a little creative to accomplish this? Of course. But it's manageable...after all, if you can successfully devote yourself to other activities/responsibilities then surely you can successfully carve out a little time for you.

Do you get to enjoy "you time" as often as you'd like?

21 comments:

  1. So... to start off, 90's music is good music, and sitting by a stream sounds like a beautiful way to spend some time. I agree I do feel a little selfish when I tell my little brother I need some time to myself, like last night when I listened to some music while sitting on the floor in the dark. But it was so incredibly nice... the glow from the player just set the mood as I listened to The Space Tour (a StarKid Production). And it was totally worth my time(:

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    1. You're definitely not selfish for needing some time to yourself. I think that's something that is essential for all of us.

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  2. One of the things I started doing at one of my jobs was to "hide" in the stairwell. This was especially useful when it was either too cold or too wet outside. Very rarely, someone would use the stairs to go up or down, probably because the office was up on the sixth floor and there were a few more floors above ours. Even if I had been on the second floor, I would have moved up higher to have this time alone. It really did make a difference.

    When I went to college I was fortunate in befriending the theater director. He often let me hide out in his office (which also served as the lighting and sound area). Because this area was typically dark, I could escape the noise and distractions and avoid the inevitable interruptions if I had been out anywhere on campus. (A friend once told me he'd found the perfect place to study in solitude and invited me to join him. I wasn't there ten minutes before someone walking by stopped to talk to me. My friend just shook his head at me and I shrugged in amused despair.)

    Hmmmm . . . I'm blabbering a bit. Time for some fruit and water. Have a full and wonderful day.

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    1. That actually sounds like a good way to escape distractions and noise!

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  3. I do find solitude once in a while during my day, but I don't really consciously take time out for myself. Maybe if I literally made it *me* time it would be more meaningful and beneficial. Great post!

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  4. I love knowing there is someone else out there who loves going to movies alone. I drive out of town to this small movie theatre with cheap popcorn and comfy seats. It puts a massive smile on my face! Thanks for the post - so many great points!

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    1. Yes people often find it strange that I like going to movies by myself but I've always loved doing it.

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  5. Yep, I have a good workout 6 mornings a week and I read a lot when I need "me time." It does make one a more productive (and less grouchy) person.

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    1. Yes a good workout definitely lifts the spirits :)

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  6. I love this post. My "me time" comes with running and biking and walking. I think that everyone needs to find something that gives their soul room to breathe.

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    1. You said it perfectly when you said that everyone needs to find something that gives their soul room to breathe - nicely put!

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  7. I wish! Being a single, work-at-home mom, "me time" is a foreign concept. My daughter's dad lives in Hawaii, so I don't even get a weekend break here and there, and I don't have family nearby. Time for myself does not come often. When her dad and I lived closer, I loved going to the lake while he had her. I'd just sit by the water and read or listen to music and write. Loved it.

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    1. Hey Casey! Sounds like you hardly have any opportunities for free time - here's to hoping that some free time comes your way to enjoy.

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    2. I'm with you Csq!! My free time seems limited although, I am lucky to have my every other weekend time... It's the ONLY time I really have. I don't know how you do it, girl!

      Keith said it best.... hoping you find some free-time to celebrate YOU!

      :)

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  8. Thank you, Keith & Jacy. It's definitely not easy, but my little girl is such a sweet blessing. She's my buddy. I do wish I had more time to do things for myself... a little alone time. I don't even have alone time when she goes to bed. I spend that time working or cleaning. lol But thank you. :)

    -Casey

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    1. Hopefully you're able to make the most of those moments that you do have, even if they're limited :)

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  9. I'm nothing without my me time. Need it everyday. I don't know how people with kids do it. Kids need something like every minute of every day. To each his own, I guess...

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    1. Yes it's amazing how they're able to fit any of it into their schedule actually!

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  10. Love this post. I've been feeling the importance of getting in "me time" lately. I feel so much free-er when I do. To get mine in I read. I love getting my mind in a different place and being fully immersed in someplace different. Another thing I do for me time is journaling. I would be nothing without my books or journal. Love that you took the time to document the importance.

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    1. Reading is an awesome thing to do during your "you time"...it's quite a nice escape!

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