One of my favorite topics is talking to patients about making time for themselves. The importance of having time for yourself whether it be meditating or doing something fun helps energize you to be at your best. How else are you supposed to maintain your sanity to handle the ups and downs of life?
I don't know if this is because it's in our DNA or if it was taught to us to not necessarily pay attention to ourselves. It would be so nice to blame it on our DNA or upbringing, right? We all are guilty of running around doing this and that only to find ourselves exhausted by the end of it all. Sometimes we can even find ourselves in a state of depression or feeling like we are not worthy of good things. Have you felt this or know anyone who has?
When your tank is empty, how can you give to others? Even when you do try to give to others or go to work you can find yourself being unproductive. It’s like you are running a race for hours, but you find that you never left the starting line. Life can be hard enough, but not giving yourself the good loving you deserve makes it even harder.
So Dr. Amber, what can I do?
Just like seeing multiple patients in clinic, I never like giving the same prescription. Why? Because everyone is different. Some things may work for some, but not others. However, I have found advice that works for most people and can be made specific to you.
Start by Writing Some Things That You Enjoy
Some people call this journaling. I call it jotting things down. But it is all the same thing. By writing down some things, events, or hobbies that you enjoy or have enjoyed in the past, this could be your road to self-discovery.
Now, please make sure these things are healthy options. If you see anything that is not a healthy and/or legal option, scratch that out right now.
Schedule a Date With Yourself
We schedule everything or everyone else on our calendars. It’s now time to schedule something just for yourself. Yes, I said it. You need to take yourself out on a date to do one or more of the enjoyable things that you have jotted down. I like to always say that small changes come together to make big changes. So don’t think you have to over do it. Even if just writing down what you enjoy is your first date, that is definitely a first step in the right direction.
Have an Accountability Partner
Changing things up can be difficult. A lot of times we need help from someone outside of ourselves to help keep us in line. It’s important to have someone to tell you that you need to give yourself some good one-on-one time. Try even including a friend in this journey of self-appreciation. You can both hold each other up and hold each other accountable.
I just hope that you are able to invest some time to better yourself. You are so valuable. I can assure you by showing yourself some love you will lead to a happier life. Remember that we all need balance. Let this be the beginning.