Monday, January 11, 2010

Note to self...

January 11, 2010
Finding Time for You
Your Most Vital Commitment

Within each of there is a well of energy that must be regularly replenished. When we act as if this well is bottomless, scheduling a long list of activities that fit like puzzle pieces into every minute of every day, it becomes depleted and we feel exhausted, disconnected, and weak. Refilling this well is a matter of finding time to focus on, nurture, and care for ourselves, or "you time." Most of us are, at different times throughout the day, a spouse, a friend, a relative, an employee, a parent, or a volunteer, which means that down time, however relaxing in nature, is not necessarily "you time." Though some people will inevitably look upon "you time" as being selfish, it is actually the polar opposite of selfishness. We can only excel where our outer world affairs are concerned when our own spiritual, physical, and intellectual needs are fulfilled.

Recognizing the importance of "you time" is far easier than finding a place for it in an active, multifaceted lifestyle, however. Even if you find a spot for it in your agenda, you may be dismayed to discover that your thoughts continuously stray into worldly territory. To make the most of "you time," give yourself enough time on either side of the block of time you plan to spend on yourself to ensure that you do not feel rushed. Consider how you would like to pass the time, forgetting for the moment your obligations and embracing the notion of renewal. You may discover that you are energized by creative pursuits, guided meditation, relaxing activities during which your mind can wander, or modes of expression such as writing.

Even if you have achieved a functioning work-life balance, you may still be neglecting the most important part of that equation: you. "You time" prepares you for the next round of daily life, whether you are poised to immerse yourself in a professional project or chores around the home. It also affords you a unique opportunity to learn about yourself, your needs, and your tolerances in a concrete way. As unimportant as "you time" can sometimes seem, it truly is crucial to your wellbeing because it ensures that you are never left without the energy to give of yourself.

Care of DailyOM


Rich said...

The concept of the need for "You time" is very real, and yet some people feel awkward or uncomfortable anytime they are alone. I do not know of any statistics, but many people seem to feel that way in my experience. I think it's a tiny bit related to how some people cannot stand to read more than basic signage or instructional basics, despite more than adequate literacy. I used to know one friend who would ONLY read when he was on the toilet. (I have never quite understood this: it appalls me. And worse, his choice at the time was Lord of the Rings... on the commode) (I have learned recently that in "the old days" before toilet paper was common in bathrooms, stacks of old magazine would often serve a similar purpose. Interesting, in a scatological way.)
Okay, I got a tad bit sidetracked. Back to R&R. I know an elderly man who actually fought against "You time" seeing it as a distraction from intentional living. And his was a deep and long struggle, from the sound of it, and over a very trivial matter. Now, I have a huge admiration for intentional living (a very cool term, btw) but only when it is applied in moderation and is not self-defeating.

Nariane said...


Lord of the Rings... on the commode??

Surely that's blasphemy! Get the pitch forks and torches! He needs to be run out of town...


Rich said...

I don't know, certain passages of LotR are probably more... um, visceral... in that setting ;-)