We can all get caught up in the what ifs, what abouts, and what would have happened if I would have done this differently. It's easy to say you are living a life without regret, but is that honestly true? Can you really say you don't wish you would have chosen a different path at some point or another and think maybe things would be better? Even if it is barely a thought that crosses your mind, it's natural.
It's only natural to look beyond where we are and wonder. That's part of being human. But along the way sometimes we lose track of what's truly important: Being present in the moment, being who we are and not who we think we should be, or even worse, who others think we should be. It seems that so many people are stuck in what Dr Seuss calls the waiting place:
Everyone is just waiting:
Waiting for the fish to bite; or waiting on the wind to fly a kite; or waiting around for Friday night; or waiting around for Uncle Jake; or a pot to boil; or a Better Break; or a string of pearls; or a pair of pants; or a wig of curls or Another Chance...Everyone is just WAITING!!! Waiting for a train to go; or a plane to come; or a bus to go; or the mail to come; or the rain to go; or the phone to ring; or the snow to snow; or waiting around for a Yes or No; or waiting for their hair to grow....
Everyone is just WAITING!!!
The problem is, next thing you know you're tired, stressed, over-weight, lost and living in the past. Looking back are you better off now than you were this time last year? And no, I'm not talking about driving a better car, owning a new house, a big screen, cell phone, whatever. That stuff is all nice but, does it really matter in the end? I'm talking about you. Are you healthier, more relaxed, more stable and secure in who you are? Can you honestly say you did something to make yourself better this year?
Well what are you waiting for? You have to take the time. No one is going to give it to you. Your job is going to drain the life out of you if you let it. Family and friends will demand more and more of your time, for good and for bad. Responsibilities, from bills, pets, cars, jobs, taxes, deadlines...they'll keep coming and they'll be there no matter what.
But honestly the world isn't going to fall apart if you say HOLD ON!!! I'm taking an hour a day for myself. I'm taking one day a week as my time. Why not? Are you that special that no one can get by without you for short amount of your time? Can you honestly say stepping out of your busy life for an hour a few times a week will be a disaster? If you think so then you're not dealing with reality. I'm not sure what the word is for people who think they are more important than they are but maybe that's you.
Think about this....there are people who have higher stress jobs, bigger families, longer work hours and more responsibility than you but they still find the time to take care of what is most important to them. Do you seriously think you can't do it? I say you can;t afford not to.
Every single person needs some down time. Down time to reflect, replenish, restore, recharge, and regroup. Time to take yourself out of the craziness and take care of you. Of course, I will promote that the perfect place for you time is exercising, in the gym, on the road running or biking, or in the pool swimming. But, that's not for everyone. It should be, but to some people exercise is just another burden. Your time could be used taking a long bath, going for a walk or a hike, reading, meditating, etc. But avoid making you time TV time, seriously that's not you time, that's taking yourself out of reality and going in to someone else's world which, in most cases, is even more stressed out then your own. You seriously have to totally disconnect from phone, television, and all the other electronic noise we are bombarded with all day every day.
I feel comfortable writing about this because I was there, and I see it in almost every client I take on. They are trying to find themselves, trying to take the time they neglected for so long to make themselves better. To finally be healthier and fitter, to find what is missing in their lives....balance. For many years I worked a job I thought I loved only to find out it was sucking the life out of me. I let it rule my relationships, my health and my sanity and to use up every hour in my life. But let me tell you when I made a change a new life opened up to me. My world changed forever and I love it! I know who I am and I feel more centered, balanced and healthy than at any point since I was a child. Making a change doesn't have to be that drastic, I'm not telling you to quit a job but to find some time for yourself.
If you do only one thing, commit to yourself to take some time every week to find your center. Drop the lame ass excuses. Think about this next time you say you don't have time: How many hours a week do you watch television? Can you honestly say that is more important than taking the time you need to take care of yourself?
Sometimes its just through meditation, reflection or deep thought. Of course, you will find that yes, you are a busy person, you're important and in demand. But nothing in the world is more important than taking care of yourself. Taking the time to be you. Not the person you think you should be, not the person people want you to be, but you.
Once you actually take that time you will find that your life becomes less stressed, because your head is cleared and you are truly able to organize your life and priorities.
There is NO ONE alive who is Youer than You!
Ref: Dr Seuss: Oh The Places You'll Go