Today is day 13 of National Health Blog Month from Wego Health. Today’s topic: From the bonus prompts list, how to take time for yourself.
The week before Thanksgiving is a little nuts. Everyone trying to get projects approved for the next year before we head into a Thanksgiving food coma that trickles into holiday party booze coma and don’t come out until after the New Year. I have a huge project due this week and another due the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.
So in this rush of end of the year work crisis’ and social obligations, it’s important that I carve out time for myself. This week I’ll be spending some later nights at the office, but Sean is swamped with his own after work meetings, which means I get “me” time when I come home.
“Me” time consists of way too much reality TV (Dear Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, I’m so happy you’ve returned). “Me” time also involves getting in my bed at 10pm and asleep by 10:30 (this may seem too late to some of you, but for the past 4 years I was still at work at 10pm, so changing my internal clock is still a challenge). “Me” time this week includes gentle yoga, as I’m still not feeling well.
But I don’t always have weeks like this. Sometimes I am too busy. Life gets in the way. The best way to create “me” time is to be organized in other areas.
Cook once per week- Sunday afternoon make a week’s worth of meals and stash them in the fridge or freezer to easily grab and go. I haven’t always done this on Sunday’s but I have made multiple meals at once to eat the rest of the week. It really helps on days when I’m too tired to cook a real meal.
Hire a cleaning service- Pay someone to come clean once or twice a month, depending on the size of your home. It’s easy to spot clean between visits and saves you a ton of time, energy and headache when you’re just not feeling up to it.
Make a schedule and stick to it- Seems unreasonable when lupus symptoms vary day to day, but having a set daily schedule means you can easily isolate what may cause a flare or change to your body. It also helps schedule me time. Whether it’s an hour for your favorite TV show, or daily exercise, or a weekly coffee date scheduling me time makes sure you actually have it.
Take a half day- It doesn’t have to be a full personal day, but even leaving work at noon helps. Take an afternoon nap, a walk in the park, watch a movie, take a yoga class, but don’t work! Zoning out for a few extra hours can make all the difference.
Treat yourself- Get a pedicure, get your hair blown out, book a massage. When I worked in sports, I’d book a massage at the end of football season as a reward for making it through (and to give my tired shoulders a break). Now, I treat myself to either a pedicure or an appointment at Dry Bar about every three months. Not only is it a time to zone out with magazines (or a movie at Dry Bar) but I also leave feeling pretty, which is important when the effects of lupus show in my appearance.
Like I said yesterday, it’s ok to be selfish. And it’s ok to spend a little bit of money if it’s going to help you feel better in the long run. I’d rather spend the money to do things for myself than shell out for a hospital bill. If you don’t have the money, good thing the holiday’s are right around the corner. Ask for gift certificates.