My childhood memories are vivid.
Playfully jumping around the local park practising handstands and cartwheels, enjoying the freedom of being a child and having fun.
Step forward forty plus years to count, and unless I am on a beach, I no longer make time for myself.
The obligatory dental and Drs appointments and getting my nail gels are the ‘me time.’
You’re probably reading this thinking, selfish cow but stay with me for a moment.
Recognising the importance of me-time is far easier than finding a place for it in an already hectic, overstretched agenda.
Whether you’re a stay at home mum/dad or working mother/father, finding a place to carve out some ‘me time’ is almost unthinkable.
The start of 2022 heralded a lightbulb moment, firstly, stop living around the needs of my children and family and do something for me.
And that’s my priority for 2022.
For the next ten weeks, on Tuesday afternoons from 2-4 pm, I have signed up for an online sketch and ink class.
I have been an active journaler and artist for over fourteen years.
It began with art classes locally and, from there, grew into something that I know I will be doing when I retire.
More importantly, it is the mechanism that allows me to escape from this cynical world and creatively replenish my energy levels.
Without rest, we feel tired, exhausted and disconnected and finding time to nurture ourselves is essential for our wellbeing.
I know I am guilty of not making time to sit and be, but I had to do something different with the new year.
I couldn’t face the prospect of arriving at another new year’s eve, questioning myself and if I had been successful or not.
Menopause slows you down and makes you more introspective; it certainly has me.
We subordinate our needs, put things off and repeat the same process the following year, and without warning, a decade has evaporated, and all you have to show for it is grey hair and more wrinkles.
Take today, for example; I am hot desking rather than working from home, and I’m out of reach of the familial distractions.
If you have achieved the elusive and well functioning work-life balance (few of us have), you may be neglecting the most crucial part of the equation, you.
Stuck in everyday stuff, we lose time and space; we lose connection to what is essential for our well being.
We end up overfilling our lives with more and more tasks and then wonder why we are exhausted.
In reality, how can you show up for family and friends if you’ve spread yourself too thin?
To make the most of your time, think about what you would like to do with it?
Maybe Yoga, meditation, a long walk, coffee with a friend, keeping a wellness journal or diary, learning something new.
If you choose to accept it, your challenge is to pop whatever it is into your diary and stick to it.
Let me know what you choose and how you get on.