“Time is a gift. It is the one thing we never really get back. Yet, so often I hear the same complaint from people “I just don’t have the time”. I love to reflect on that single affirmation. Life has taught me a basic principle: We make time for what we really want.“
So what does it take for us as women to take time for ourselves? Time to dream, time to create, time to nourish, time to heal. We find ourselves facing feelings of guilt at the thought of taking some time away from our families, when in reality, that time away puts us back together to face our responsibilities with greater ease.
As a health coach, I help people flow into a healthier lifestyle. However, they often say they don’t have time to exercise, to make a smoothie for themselves, or even time to pray or meditate. So, when we make a list of where their time really goes in just one day, the magic begins to happen. They realize they waste so much time doing things that don’t really add to their goal of becoming healthier versions of themselves.
Here’s what I mean: did you know that juicing some celery and washing the juicer takes less than 5 minutes? Yes! It only takes that much time to add years to your life with a single healthy habit. If we focus on just one new weekly habit, in one year we have about 52 new habits.
As I become older, wiser and more confident, I am also unapologetic as to where my priorities lie. I wish the same for all women. I remember when my children were younger. I felt guilt if I left them for only a couple of hours. Now, I am convinced that taking time for myself is better for me and for them as well. It’s a gift for all of us.
Here are some ideas of things to do for yourself in just 30 minutes (or under) to become healthier.
- Go for a walk.
- Make a healthy meal.
- Call that one friend who makes you laugh out loud. Laughter is therapy!
- Spend time in quiet reflection or meditation.
- Write in your journal.
- Practice yoga.
- Pursue a passion: make art, write, dream.
- Declutter areas of your home.
- Try something new.
- Take a bubble bath.
- Do some gardening.
- Walk barefoot.
- Think about the things you feel grateful for and write them down.
- Look through old pictures and organize them.
- Reward yourself: get that thing you’ve been wanting!
- Mindfully enjoy a cup of tea and a piece of dark chocolate.
- Read a good book.
- Have a glass of wine.
- Remember why you love yourself.
Many of us when faced with new opportunities and challenges start to worry at the thought of having enough time. For sure, we have the time. But we have to make the conscious decision to give it to ourselves. Giving ourselves those little time nuggets makes us healthier in many ways.
So, please, don’t just take time, give it to yourself as a gift with loving gratitude and you will see everything else fall into place in your life.
Ana Victoria Villar.