By Shawn McAndrew
I recently had a conversation with someone who is dealing with a personal crisis. We all go through hard times, but this person’s situation reminded me that we often get caught up in the moment of a crisis and forget about making time for ourselves.
What does that mean, making time for yourself? If we look at the tools and practices we learned in the Process, we are reminded that it has to do with self-love, compassion, and self-forgiveness. The busyness of a day can take away our sense of self, make us forget to sit down, eat, drink water, breathe!
Rushing through a day, or taking care of others, often causes us to forget about ourselves. The civilized work world factored in mandated work breaks decades ago for the simple reason that, even if we think we don’t need a break (translate: Dark Side message), the intellect, body, and emotional self really do need a break every few hours.
Take a Break
Taking a break is not just a mandate, it is a gift to yourself. Whether you’re just stopping to take a few deep breaths or sitting down to a nourishing meal, your body, heart, and mind will thank you. Make it a practice during a busy work day or an overloaded schedule to take at least 15 minutes every few hours to breathe, drink some water, eat some food, sit down, and reflect on your physical, mental, and emotional needs in the moment.
Setting aside some time each day for yourself is a way of building breaks into your life and creating good habits that will permeate your day. You may notice yourself stopping in the middle of a highly anxious meeting and taking some deep breaths. Maybe instead of eating on the run, you actually sit down and enjoy the food with which you are nourishing your body. Whatever becomes your daily practice, let it be for the good of your Quadrinity, which – by extension – becomes good for others around you.
Over time, you may find yourself implementing more practices throughout your day, making more time for yourself. Whatever makes your life calmer, more focused, and more loving is always a step in the right direction.
Practices for Making Time
You may remember some examples of how to create practices from your Light Circle’s Weekly Honk. Any one of them is a good place to start your practice of making time for yourself.
- Create a journal of appreciations and gratitudes
- Do the centering practice
- Use the hands-on-heart exercise
- Do the heart-to-heart in the mirror with yourself
- Re-center with a visualization (I Am That I Am, Spirit-Guided Path, River of Life, Sleep Visualization, etc.)
- Check in with your Spiritual Self and get an “in-the-moment” message
- Do some pre-cycling or recycling
- Check in with your Quadrinity
- Recycle pesky patterns
- Do a Self-Forgiveness / Self-Love Walk
- Look at your “Vision for My Life” that you did in the Process; adjust it and expand it
Many of these tools and practices can be found on the Hoffman website. Check them out:
You can also listen to time-management expert Laura Vanderkam’s Ted Talk here:
However you make time for yourself, just remember that it’s for you! You matter, and are well deserving of the time you can give yourself.