If you’re not careful you can stay permanently ‘on’ in life.
Going from one thing to the next, to the next and to the next. Days filled from top to bottom with stuff you need to do and people you need to see. Have you ever looked at your diary for the next 2 weeks and wondered when you’ll fit in buying groceries or calling your mum? I know I have.
For some of us, the art of craving out ‘you’ time has been lost. Our society views alone time for people who must be sad, lonely or socially anxious. It can even be seen by some as being selfish. How dare you give time and energy to yourself! Crazy, but sadly not an uncommon mindset.
Spending time alone reconnects you.
Ironic, isn’t it? Spending time alone can allow for more connection, not less. And here’s why.
Do you truly know who you are? Do you know what motivates you? What drains you? What lifts you up? Unless we spend time connecting more deeply with ourselves, it becomes impossible to really connect with others on a deeper level.
Alone time away from life’s hustle and bustle can also switch on your ‘relaxation response’ – the opposite of the ‘stress response’. This benefits your health more than you can imagine, and 3 ways to create space if you’re lacking ‘You’ time helps you sort through any problems in your life as your mind becomes much clearer.
3 ways to create some space for you.
1. Plan for it!
Seriously. Get out your diary (right now if you have it on hand) and find a day/half day or a few hours which are going to be yours over the next 2 weeks. Write it down and protect that time. Would you cancel on a good friend knowing you’ve arranged a time to catch up? Treat this time the same way.
2. Start saying no.
Many of us fear that by saying no we are going to upset other people and they’ll stop ‘liking us’. We also fill our diaries to the brim due to FOMO. But saying yes when you need to say no causes burnout. So, what can you do? Next time you get asked to go somewhere or to do something you would usually say yes to, just say ‘I’d love to, but unfortunately I already have plans on xyz’. Keep it simple.
3. Stop doing the things you don’t like.
How many things do you do because you think you ‘should’ do them? For example, let’s say you started French class because you thought you ‘should’ learn a new language. But you don’t like the teacher and you’ve discovered you don’t like French. But you keep going back thinking if you do it for long enough you may start enjoying it…. Well, let me give you permission to stop doing the things which don’t give you joy. Life is too short. Reclaim this time as your own.
Time on your own can benefit you in so many ways. From increased concentration, creativity and productivity. But the biggest benefit I believe is on the quality of the relationship you have with yourself, and the positive impact this has on your relationship with others.
How would you feel if you gave yourself permission to say no today? What would it free you up to do/feel? We would love to know in the comments below. (You might inspire someone).
Jayne Corner is the founder of The Empowered Woman. Combining Wellness Coaching and Clinical Hypnotherapy, Jayne helps women manage their stress and get unstuck from unhealthy habits and negative thinking. With a background in the fast-paced world of advertising, she now bridges the gap for her clients between the corporate world and a more holistic approach to life.