Pick Your DayJul 02, 2015
When was the last time you had a day all to yourself to fill as you please?
Does this sound like a distant dream? It’s doesn’t have to if you schedule it in. (Trust me! Making time for ME days is the best thing since green juice and smoothies!)
Often times we set out with good intentions to make special dates with ourselves, but life gets in the way. So, we postpone it or try to reschedule it, but inevitably our days to ourselves never happen.
A trick that has worked very well for me is to schedule in my own “me time” on my calendar AND making sure that I treat that date just as importantly as I would a doctor’s appointment or a parent-teacher meeting.
Just yesterday, I had an entire day to myself. Although it required some orchestrating on my part to plan this day well in advance (I am talking weeks), it was so worth it. I knew when I planned this day that it was going to be all about creating calm before the storm. The craziness of Summer.
Summer is one of my favourite seasons. I love the long warm days, the lush green surroundings, the cool evening breeze, the first lick of a popsicle, the water plays in the local splash pads, the patio laughs and al fresco dining with friends and family, and most of all, the clear skies and bright stars at twilight. Hmmm….dreamy.
BUT let’s be honest here: It can also be a stressful time of year with the kids out of school and mayhem with schedules, camps, day trips, travels and all of that. What I loved about building in time for myself was that it forced me to ground myself, to take inventory, to be present in the moment, and to remember to pamper myself before life got busy again.
My day was filled with spa appointments (yes, a couple!), colour therapy sauna (gotta say, I love those colours!), some retail therapy, perusal of books in one of those vintage book stores (love the creaking of old, hardwood floors and the smoky scent of used books), a heart-to-heart with the bag lady, and a long, leisurely fondue lunch at a local wine bar with a dear girlfriend. We poured our hearts and shared our secrets.
I even indulged in a cappuccino from a small little cafe around the corner. The weather was just perfect for all this-coziness in the midst of a rainy Sunday. The day was smooth.. On my way home, I couldn’t help but smile to myself—I made this happen. This day was perfect because I created it and that felt empowering.
How can you bring more empowerment into your life? Start with the simple things. Start with you. Plan a non-negotiable ME day. Here’s how:
1. Get clear on your intention. What is this day about? What do you need more of in your life? Your needs will change depending on what is happening in your life and around you.
2. What activities do you love but never have enough time for? Do you want to spend your day at a local cafe and journal all day? Do you want some TLC—perhaps a massage, a facial, or water therapies? Do you need to catch up with a friend? Do you want to explore the museum, or try something new, like rock climbing? How about a cooking class? Do you just want to sit in bed with your favourite warm drink and catch up on movies (this is luxury for me!). The possibilities are endless.
3. Pull out your calendar and schedule it your day. This very important step is not to be missed. It makes space in your life for self-care, and makes your alone time a priority.
4. Let everyone know you are unavailable. On your day, make sure to send an out of office alert, have your babysitter booked (or if it’s on a school or camp day, even better! no babysitter required!), limit your phone use, and have meals organized the day before.
5. Start your day with a grounding meditation to set the tone and to prepare you to receive all the goodness this day has to offer. Eliminate guilt. Trust that you need it. Think of it as a mental health day.
6. Be fully present. Don’t get bogged down with should’s and have to’s. Enjoy every minute of your time.
What are you waiting for? Grab your calendar and pick your day!
Do you already make special dates with yourself? How do you make time for it when life becomes busy? Share your strategies in the comments below.