Even as adults we all need time outs. I for one look forward to them after a long day of meetings, sitting all day writing, running errands to keep our household running (semi-)smoothly, or after traveling, whether for business or pleasure. In any case, I think time outs ROCK!
In today's world of, "I'd love to but... (fill it in with any reason why you're too busy, there are oodles of them!)", I often hear people say how they wish they had more time, time to visit, time to just sit and relax, time to watch a movie, time to eat a normal meal at an actual dining room table! Ahhh! Well here's the good news...we ALL have 24 hours in a day, and YOU control it. Although I must admit that even that seems like too little time in a day when I've got so many projects, clients, home to-do lists, and the like. Since we all have the same amount of time in a day, why is it that some can find time to do practically everything on their daily list and still have time to relax or hang out with friends? Why can some run multiple businesses, manage dozens of employees, enjoy healthy family meals around the table, and NOT seem like they're stressed out!!?!! It's because they've learned (perhaps the hard way) that making time for those people and things that matter most to them in life is a MUST. Granted, there are likely to not be too many in that category...but there SHOULD (and CAN) be. It's truly about prioritizing. I'm still working on this one but I'm getting better every day, because I work at it, and I'm intentional about it. In fact, I even schedule it. It, meaning time to do the things most important to me and my family.
Over the past two decades I've come to realize more and more each day just how precious life is and that we are not promised tomorrow. Having gone to far too many funerals of young and old family members and friends, I've realized how precious of a gift each moment is and that I must stop taking it for granted. I never want to look back with regret for not taking care of myself, my family, my clients, and my friends, to the best of my ability and with still leaving time to breathe, to relax and take a time out.
I would only guess that you feel this way also, at least sometimes. If not, you've probably done a great job at managing your schedule. Job well done! You can be proud of yourself. Perhaps now you could share your secret with the rest of us who are still working on it. We'd love to hear how you've found balance in your life.
Here are several ways that I've found work for me when seeking balance in my time and life:
1. I'm forever grateful. My gratitude list is too long to list here, but it includes my faith, my family, my friends, my health, my career, and the time I still have...until, and I schedule it.
2. I've learned to appreciate those around me more and to say so. Sometimes I can take for granted all that I am blessed with in this short life. And since I began sharing my appreciation with my husband for all that he is and does, and with our daughters for how wonderful they are and how very proud of them we are, I've received so much more appreciation in return. Funny how that works, I give and then it comes back to me. That law of sewing and reaping works! :D I've been known to send a card of appreciation to my hubby at work, or to a family member or friend who's always been by my side through thick and thin, or to someone who just really needs a bit of encouragement. And sometimes it's a simple hug. I recently had a friend share with me that she appreciates that I hug her when she's coming in and going out, and that sometimes it's the only hug she gets. It about broke my heart! So give loads of hugs and remember to put your smile on, even when you don't feel like it. You could change someone's life.
3. Managing my emotions has been a challenge, but a very rewarding task to undertake. Our emotions can control us or we can control them. I hope you'll trust me when I say that the latter is much more beneficial for you and everyone around you. ;-)
4. I focus on what I want and move in that direction with my time and resources. I have clearly stated goals and a vision board (or two or three) to aid me in doing so I am very intentional about what I listen to, read, watch, and surround myself with during each day.
5. I get up early to be sure I have time to do the important health related things that keep me energized and going strong, including prayer, personal development, exercise, and going over my schedule. I want to say that I've found this to one of the most important ones, but they're ALL important. :-)
Those are just some of the positive and productive things you can do with your time. There are many options with our daily schedules and routines. Of course it varies for all of us.
You might be thinking, "yeah, that's nice for you, you don't have (to.....!) like I do," and you're right. We all have different paths we've chosen, yes, I said chosen, to walk through and each path leads somewhere different and potentially special...if we're living on purpose. If you are among the multitudes of individuals who has yet to find their purpose, I encourage you to find a mentor, a coach, a friend, or someone who can show you the way to your purpose. It's there, you might just have to look closer. You are a gifted and talented person in your very own way. There is no one else like you on Earth. You are unique and you are special.
My hope for each of you is that you'll give yourself those occasional time outs, and enjoy this journey through life.
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