When is the last time you did something you enjoy with no thought about the rest of the fast paced world we are surrounded by? Something you really enjoy…something just for yourself?
In today’s world, there is little opportunity to take time for ourselves! I’m not talking about cruising through Facebook living vicariously through others, or reading up on what is going on with the world through news or twitter. I’m talking about having some good old fashion “Me Time”. Unfortunately, some don’t even know what me time is. To put it simply, “Me Time” is anything you define as relaxing and fun…something that you truly enjoy! This could be anything from sitting in a room by yourself meditating, to going to the gym and exercising, to going out with friends. Some people like to read a book and escape this world, some like to go out with friends, and others like to go to yoga and allow the stresses of the day/week escape as they bend and contort into positions I can only dream of. There is no single definition for this “Me Time” activity that lowers your stress levels, allows you to live a longer and healthier life. Oh, and in the long run me time helps you succeed in life no matter what your goals are!
The importance of “me time” on your health and success is evident! A couple of benefits you may experience taking me time is…being happier, feeling refreshed, clearer thought, sleeping better, and rejuvenation. Think of it as similar to recharging a battery. When you plug it in to recharge, it isn’t doing anything but recharging, and although your “me time” may be going out with friends or working out, it is your mind that can turn off and recharge from what it is you are normally thinking/stressing about.
One of the major benefits of “me time” is it destresses your mind and body. Believe it or not, but stress and anxiety can, and does, wreak havoc on your nervous system. Stress is extremely important to your health, as the nervous system is essential for proper immune function. Daniel Goleman in Emotional Intelligence writes a “key pathway linking emotions and the immune system is via the influence of the hormones released under stress,” Cortisol and Prolactin are released during times of stress, “while these hormones surge through the body, the immune cells are hampered in their function: Stress Suppresses immune resistance.”
Although, I have several personal me time’s already in motion within my schedule like lifting weights, playing recreational sports, and putting in a movie and turning out all the lights to get into “movie mode,” some need to consciously plan and allow themselves to take “me time.” What I suggest is to write down a couple of activities you really enjoy. Activities that relax you and take you out of this complicated world we live in. After you write them down, think about when you can schedule them into your day/week. Once you have them scheduled…do them! You will not only feel rejuvenated, but your body, mind, and immune system will be stronger for it. Keeping “me time” in your daily/weekly rotation will, in the long run, help you succeed in life!