Taking some much needed “me time” can lower your stress levels, improve your overall health and prepare you for your daily to-do list.
Life can be hectic. It’s hard not to be pulled in so many different directions—sick kids, late night work deadlines, or you have no idea what to make for dinner — that finding time for yourself is often last on the list.
While it’s difficult to prioritize reading a book over the other priorities in your day-to-day life, taking a little time to do something you really enjoy not only lowers your stress, but can leave you refreshed, relaxed, and ready to take on everything else on your “to-do” list.
It’s can be challenging to find 15 to 30 minutes of uninterrupted, relaxing time, but by utilizing these 10 easy tips you can start putting yourself first today.
Remember: When you make time for you, everything— and everyone — in your life benefits.
- Give a loved one a big hug: Physical contact is a powerful stress reliever. Go ahead and hug it out.
- Get a plant for your house or your desk: Houseplants aren’t just beautiful air purifiers — they can actually help keep you calm. Researchers have found that simply being around plants can induce your relaxation response.
- Dance it Out: Abandon all inhibitions and let loose. Dancing will not only improve your heart and lung health while building muscle, it maintains weight gain and improves balance, flexibility and agility.
- Unplug at least 60 minutes before bed: The use of computers (including smart phones) have been linked to reduced sleep, diminished sleep quality, obesity and lack of energy in the day. Turn off those electronics before bed and enjoy a much-deserved rest.
- Eat an avocado: The monounsaturated fats and potassium in the superfood can lower blood pressure and according to recent studies, cholesterol.
- Say no: Practice saying ‘no’ so you don’t overbook yourself. You can do anything, but not everything.
- Take a time out: Take a few deep breaths, a quick catnap, stretch your muscles, medicate, or go for a quick 10-minute walk. Even a short break in your day can leave you surprisingly refreshed, increase your energy levels and improve productivity (and maybe even provide some additional “me time.”)
- Do a small project or craft: There’s nothing quite like the feeling of accomplishment. Even if you aren’t the traditional “crafty” type (note to self: stay away from the glue gun), working on a creative activity can help reduce stress, boost happiness levels and may protect against aging.
- Hang out with your BFF: Research has shown that people who have social and long-lasting friendships live longer and enjoy better health and quality of life.
- Listen to your heart: Remind yourself who you are by taking a moment to reflect on what’s most important in your life. Ask yourself, “What are my needs and desires, and what does my heart say?”