There’s a lot of talk about 'seasons' in life, that is, how we experience one stage of life in all it's glorybefore moving onto another. This is true for us as children, teens or being grey haired nomads, or having a young family. What I want to talk about is the season of life where are time poor and demands of us are constant. This stage of life may be because you have a young family, or you are a carer or you have a demanding job. Whatever it is that detracts you from time to invest in yourself doesn't really matter for the purposes of this blog, what matters is how you take time to recharge your batteries.
Parenting in a young family feels like a lot of service. Investing in others and all the routines that are required of us to complete, conduct or support daily life means we are constantly giving from ourselves. Humans are built to do this. We know this because, done in balance, it adds to our feelings of contentment and well being (here's evidence). But like all things in life, too much service, and not enough self care or investment in ourselves and our internal scales become out of balance. This is when we begrudge others our time, are irritable and generally out of sorts.
Here are my tips to even out the balance in your life:
2. Read widely – We provide ourselves with a rich internal life when we feed our minds with new information and ways to live life. Reading provides a gateway to a new world which expands our mind from being focused on our own, small but big to us, life. If you aren’t a reader, audio books and pod casts provide the same experience.
3. Talk it out - Engaging with people in all stages of life and society allow us to connect with collective wisdom and feel a part of something bigger. My friend has been attending a women’s circle which has women represented from all ages and stages – she loves it. My friends offers her wisdom to those that request it and she enjoys ideas and guidance from other women. Women's circle not your thing? What about investing more time into spaces in your life where you connect with people that make you feel good, think hobbies, sporting activities, volunteering, coffee dates, clothes swap parties etc.
4. Exercise – This is one you would have seen coming, but of course it needs to make it on the list. Our bodies are built for us to move, we release a wonderful cocktail of neurochemicals when we exercise. Simply put, we feel better. Sedentary lifestyles are not how we made it this far evolutionary wise. You know this and I know this, and it’s time we, literally, got moving. Yoga anyone?
5. Notice how good your life is – This is always a gratitude giver. When we have invested in the ways above, it gives us distance and perspective. Our own buckets are filled. That’s when we are more likely to notice how good we have it, and interestingly, it’s also when we are most likely to get practical and get moving on what we need to change. When we invest in ourselves it starts a self-directed ball rolling in ways that can only lead to good things for us.
How do you invest time into yourself?