How to Find Time for Yourself

Last updated: March 15, 2019
Published 8:59 am

Nowadays, everyone’s always in a rush. Whether it’s to get that big promotion at work, earn that college degree, or finish a major project – everyone’s just rushing to get things done so much that they barely have time for themselves.

What’s worse is that when people do try to focus on their own personal activities, they feel bad because they’ve conditioned themselves to think that they shouldn’t waste their time on frivolities. Time is money, they tell themselves, and in this economy, people are pressured to work, work, work otherwise they’ll find themselves left behind.

While a decent work ethic is incredibly important, people shouldn’t forget that they need to consider their own well-being as well. Work too much and you’ll find yourself physically, emotionally, and mentally drained. Pushing yourself to the limit just isn’t healthy, not unless you actually take time to give yourself a breather every now and then.

Think about it. If you spend all of your time and energy on just work, you’ll burn out fast and you might even put your health at risk. And if you’re physically unwell, you won’t be able to work as efficiently. You’ll most likely end up taking a long time to finish a project than your co-workers or your peers. Essentially, all work and no play idea is counterproductive. You won’t just be a dull character; you’ll be an unfit and inefficient employee or student.

Benefits of Spending Worthwhile Time for Yourself

Having regular downtime for yourself has a lot of benefits. Besides recharging your mind and body, spending quality time with yourself can actually improve your life at work and at home. Here are just a few notable advantages.

Helps you focus better

When your mind is going a mile a minute all day every day, you’ll notice that you find it difficult to really focus on the task right in front of you. You’re too overwhelmed with going through your to-do list in your head, planning the week ahead of you, worrying about upcoming deadlines so naturally, you’re going to have a hard time concentrating. When you take some time for yourself, not thinking or worrying about anything, you’ll be able to go back to work with a clearer and sharper mind. Even just a few minutes of clearing your head can do you wonders. It’s never healthy to keep it all in all the time.

Helps you make decisions

If you always struggle with making decisions, that’s probably because you’re too tense and your mind is too cluttered to settle on anything. If you take a step back, channel your frustrations on a creative outlet, you’re able to think in a different angle, helping you see the situation much better. Then you’ll be a more prepared decision-maker.

Broadens your horizons

Lastly, when you take time for yourself either with a beloved old hobby or a wholly new activity, you’re extending yourself to a world outside of your own, especially if you join a like-minded group. You have more opportunities to learn new things, meet new people, and improve yourself as a person. What’s more, you’re actually enjoying yourself while you’re at it.

Finding Time for Yourself

At this point, you might be convinced that you do need to spend more time improving your own well-being but don’t know where to start. Fortunately, it’s a lot easier than you might think. Here are a few tips experts advise on how you can find the time for yourself.

Let go of the guilt

The first thing you need to do is to stop feeling guilty for putting yourself first. Don’t feel that you’re being selfish because chances are, some time off for your well-being is exactly what you need to be better. You won’t be able to enjoy your time off if you’re always feeling like you should be doing something else. Always remember that your well-being is just as a priority as everything else.

Start your day earlier for yourself

This is most applicable to those with nine to five jobs. Wake up earlier than you normally would and spend that extra time meditating, exercising, reading, or whatever relaxes you. Spending the first hour of your morning to yourself is a great way to start the day since you’ll feel more relaxed or energized.

Figure out what you’re spending your time on

Oftentimes, people waste their time on unnecessary things without really realizing it. They’re too busy to even consider that maybe they’re spending their time on the right things. Sit down and really think about your current schedule. See what activities you can cut or areas you can improve. Declutter your schedule and find some time during your day where you can spend some time for yourself.

Limit or eliminate distractions

Not all downtime is worthwhile, especially if you know you can spend your free time better. If you find yourself watching TV or scrolling through social media to unwind, consider switching to activities that are more fulfilling such as getting into a creative hobby or spending time with your loved ones. Sometimes, media can distract you from going after what you want so better to unplug and stay offline when you’re spending time with yourself.

Learn time management

Time management is crucial in this day and age. You’ll be a more organized person if you’re able to prioritize your time and stay on schedule. It might be tricky at first but with effort and practice, you’ll be able to figure out a schedule that will work for you.

Say ‘no’

Finally, it’s very important for you to be able to turn down new responsibilities or assignments when you already have a lot on your plate. These days, it can be difficult to say no to people for fear of consequences but, for your own sake, know your limits. You can’t always take every new project or organize every family activity. Take care of yourself first before taking care of anything or anyone else.