THE GENERATIONS BEFORE US often confused the so-called “me” time with inappropriate hedonism that spoke against hard-working people’s ethics. Taking a bath while the house is a mess, going to the movies during the final exam rush, reading a book while you should be working on an assignment or stretching when you’re already late for work might be a reason for our mothers to panic, but as it turns out, one generation’s curse is another generation’s blessing.
Oxford Dictionary defines “me” time as “time spent relaxing on one’s own as opposed to working or doing things for others, seen as an opportunity to reduce stress and restore energy” and often there is no amount of medication that could heal as quickly as 60 mindful minutes do.
How to do it?
First, identify your stress triggers. It might be fatigue, anxiety, burnout, it might be repeating feelings of low self-esteem (and self-worth), lack of motivation, lack of focus or just a general feeling of apathy. Then identify what allows you some honest (quiet) conversation with yourself, what instantly fills up your batteries, relaxes you and recharges your mind. Then set up a schedule and stick to it. Make it a habit and we promise you won’t regret this (Mom, if you’re reading this, you read it well: exams can wait.).
Hint: routines (or other regularly repeated activities, preferably in the same time frame) put less stress on the brain while trying to make decisions and hence leaves more energy for other important tasks. Put it on the books and stop thinking about it.
What to do?
There is a reason people call it “me” time: the time you dedicate to yourself is namely as personal and individual as our characters. That said, despite its vagueness, do what makes you happy would actually be the best possible advice. We have some ideas, it’s up to you what you are bound to do with them (but we do suggest you give them a chance).
1. Walk out of the house and into the movies (by yourself)
Because, seriously, who needs small talk during a movie anyways?!
2. Drown in the bubbles (and we don’t mean champagne)
Take an Epsom salt bath – rich with magnesium, it helps relax muscle tissue, softens the skin, revives and gently detoxifies the body. The best part? You’ll instantly feel lighter, fresher and more focused (plus, you’ll sleep better too!).
3. Shut down Netflix and open a book
And if you’re really trying to do something good for yourself, read consciously and write down some quotes. It is never the wrong time to learn some more, even if it is highly abstract and (or) spiritual and has little to do with the assignment you have to hand in tomorrow.
4. Stretch (or do yoga, but, really, stretch)
Because, you know, we at Melon & Lime honestly believe that stretching is one of the most powerful stress-reducing tools and that alone should be a good reason to spend more time on your yoga mat.
5. Take off
Maybe not forever, but just walk out and let your feet guide you. Take some deep breaths and try to look at the usual surroundings with open eyes. Ever noticed the rooftops at the building you pass by on your way to work every morning? Or that blooming magnolia in the local park?
I guess what we are trying to say is there is no wrong “me” time, as long as you keep it on schedule and make it mindful. That said, it’s time for the details – embrace them, those little observations might sweep you off your feet.
Photo credit: Yoga in Photos (@yogainphotos)
Leave us your email and we will share what inspires us with you.