Ahhh … “me” time.
And I couldn’t help but think that hindsight is such a wonderful, joyous thing, isn’t it?
This is how my weekends used to pan out half a lifetime ago … go out for drinks after work, go to a club for dancing and more drinks, get up, put on fluoro leotard, go to aerobics, spend morning lying on the beach, shop for groceries in the afternoon, go out at night or have friends over for a dinner party, go to bed, wake up and repeat.
So. Much. Me. Time.
I honestly did not know how good I had it.
Now, weekends disappear faster than the number of wines I used to get away with consuming back in the day.
I’ve learned to snatch slices of “me” time the moment a small window presents itself.
A walk on the beach and a quiet coffee at a cafe after the morning school run; a cosy lie in on a Sunday morning with a cup of tea, the papers and my iPad; a sneaky hour catching up on my favourite mags and a book I’m meaning to get around to reading …
These are all simple things but, if executed without a hiccup, are oh, SO sweet.
The very nature of said “me” time as a mother is that invariably your vision for a few quiet moments to yourself can get interrupted by fighting children, children who apparently need feeding on demand and children who seem to be drawn to your “me time” space like flies to a steak at a summer barbecue.
So, I choose my time wisely. Very wisely.
I do so because without a good injection of me time in my week, I can quickly become someone who even I am not very fond of
Can’t have that, can we?
It took many years to realise that me time was essential to my health and minimising stress levels. Once I realised that it was up to me to put me at the top of our family’s priority list, things changed.
I was no longer relying on there being some chance stroke of luck that an hour of free time would suddenly present itself, allowing me to snavel said time for something completely self indulgent.
Because it’s OK to self indulge. It really is.
1. Make yourself a priority. You can’t be everything to everyone every day of the week. It’s ok to step off the mum-wife-work treadmill but it’s up to you to make it happen. No one else will.
2. Sit your family down and explain to them that you need their help for a little regular time out. Maybe it’s only an hour a week but if you explain why you need it, you have more chance of getting everyone on board. This is especially essential if you have young children and need your partner or old children to help out.
3. Make a list of the things you’d like to do in the time you’ve allocated to yourself. Maybe it’s catching up with treasured girlfriends; maybe it’s reading a book from cover to cover; maybe it’s finally using that spa voucher you were given on your birthday. Knowing exactly how you’d like to use your time will help you to actually carry through with making your me time happen on a regular basis.
4. Make it happen. Don’t just talk about it. You’ve enlisted your family’s support. Follow through. You’ll be happier for it – and so will they.
* This four-part blogging post series is brought to by Golden Circle. Golden Circle has released a new juice range - Golden Circle Healthy LifeTM Fruit Juice - which contains a unique combination of probiotic cultures clinically shown to support your natural immune system. You can also support your natural immune system by keeping stress levels at a manageable level – and that includes time out for you.
It’s the first of its kind of juice in Australia, offering a dairy-free dose of probiotics without added sugar or artificial flavours and colourings. Every serve contains 1 billion beneficial bacteria, which work in your gut to support your natural immune system.
The juices come in Breakfast and Apple & Mango flavours in either a 1l or 300ml bottle. Both flavours got the thumbs up from the Styling You household but for my money, I’d choose the Breakfast juice all the way. Which works out well as the youngest in our household is more keen on the Apple Mango flavour (doesn’t like orange, apparently ). You’ll find them in the chilled section (they need to stay chilled to maintain their effectiveness) of major supermarkets in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland.
Styling You in conjunction with Nuffnang and Golden Circle is giving away a Golden Circle Healthy LifeTM Fruit Juice prize pack with each post in this series. Each pack contains a $50 Woolworths gift card.
To enter, answer the question: What’s your ultimate me time activity and how would you enjoy it with a Golden Circle Healthy LifeTM Fruit Juice? Leave your answer in the comment section below. The most creative and original answer wins. This competition opens November 22, 2012 and closes on November 30, 2012 at 5pm (AEDST).
But … I know you want more. There is a major giveaway happening as well. One reader has the opportunity to win a $1000 lastminute.com.au experience voucher. Entries have already been collated from the first three posts in this series. For a final chance at the big prize, enter by answering the question above in the comments section. Full terms and conditions here.
A great prize ahead of the holidays, don’t you think?