We rush from one thing to another with our mental To Do lists piled high enough to keep ourselves and two clones busy for weeks. As a result, we’ve abandoned something important. We’ve forgotten how to take care of ourselves.
“What?” I can hear you saying. “Are you mad? I don’t have time to take care of myself. I have to get this project done!”
If the person holding up the building gets crushed, the whole thing collapses.
Think of it this way: If you go down, your To Do list goes down with you.
Like I talk about in Work-Life Balance: Learning the Hard Way, the path to health and happiness is found when you keep yourself in balance. And that means taking time to care for the caregiver–you.
I’m not saying it’s easy to remember. In fact, it can be downright challenging. The minute your back is turned, the old get-it-all-done-or-die-trying mind set will sneak up and bite you in the butt–hard. Yikes!
To hold the line on keeping the internal home fires burning, I started a list of the things I like to do that nurture me. When I feel life spinning out of control, I pick one. You might resonate with some of the ways I came up with:
- Get a manicure/pedicure (relaxing and pretty!)
- Watch a funny show or movie
- Read a good mystery with comedy in it for 30 minutes
- Make a pot of tea, get out one of my nice china teacups, and relax with a cup of tea
- Meditate for 30 minutes (or nap–however it shakes out)
- Sunbathe on the back deck for 20 minutes
- List five things I’m grateful for
- Daydream for 20 minutes
- Treat myself to a Starbuck’s coffee
- Get out the mandala coloring book and color for 30 minutes
If I’m feeling stressed or overwhelmed, taking 20 or 30 minutes to show myself some love and appreciation never fails to restore my equilibrium. The truth is, no one can take better care of you, than you.
Make a list of what relaxes you and helps you feel good, then pick one and try it. You’ll be amazed at how quickly that feeling of being overwhelmed shrinks. You’ll be healthier, happier, and enjoy the blessing of your life all the more for it.
What do you like to do to relax?