Recently, I told a friend that I’ve gotten a lot of me time, lately. I was happy about it. I mean, I was practically bragging. That night, I started to feel sick. In fact, I felt so sick, I almost went to the hospital for a third time in two weeks. Since then, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about what me time really means. I’m a positive person, so I approach things with a glass-is-half-full mentality, but I’m settling, too! I don’t want to settle. Good enough isn’t good enough. I want more. Most importantly, we deserve more.
First of all, I should not, we should not, consider things like health, hygiene, personal presentation, chores, work, and family as having anything to do with me time. That’s not me time! Me time is NOT any of these things:
- Going to the gym. (health)
- Getting your nails done. (personal presentation)
- Getting your hair done. (personal presentation)
- Taking a bubble bath. (hygiene)
- Having time to clean while the kids are out with dad. (chores)
- Going grocery shopping, alone. (chores)
- Taking a brisk walk. (health)
- Talking on the phone while you clean. (chores)
- Working from home. (work)
- Shopping for clothes. (personal presentation)
- Calling in sick to work. (health)
- Taking the kids to the park. (family)
- Eating breakfast. (health)
- Drinking coffee. (SANITY)
We’ve brainwashed ourselves!
I’m not saying that time with our children, covering up the grey hair, getting a cute mani, or going for a run isn’t quality time or quality of life. Sure, it is. But, me time is something else entirely. Me time is not just about making the things you have to do more enjoyable. I’m pretty sure that washing one’s booty is something that needs to get done. Taking a bubble bath instead of a shower still serves the purpose of personal hygiene. Yet, we, women, the ever-positive mothers and wives that we are, insist on seeing a light at the end of the laundry pile, a rainbow in the mop bucket, and swear we’ve found a pot of gold when we get two minutes to do nothing.
No, ladies. No!
Spending quality time with our children at the park, playing a game, or enjoying an ice cream cone is not me time. That’s parenting. We’re so used to not getting me time, we’ve just completely redefined it, to our own detriment. Pretending we’re still using the bathroom so we can finish that article we just clicked to from Facebook is not secret me time. It’s just mommy hiding in the bathroom so she doesn’t have a breakdown time. I understand why we’ve done this. There aren’t enough hours in the day. That’s what we tell ourselves. In part, it’s true. Most of us have lives that are so busy, we’re lucky to get six hours of sleep each night, and baggy sunken-in eyes are the good-mom badge of honor. We need to save ourselves.
So, what is me time?
That’s simple. Me time is about me. A little more me. Topped off with me. If you’re going to do something regardless, that’s not me time. Me time is doing the things that only serve you. Me time doesn’t serve a purpose for anyone but me. Anything that serves basic needs, rights, or obligations doesn’t count. A good example of me time would be learning to play an instrument because you’ve always wanted to play in a band. Having a picnic lunch alone, is me time. Some of you are already getting turned off by this. Why? Because we don’t even know what it’s like to be alone. We’re not used to it at all, so it’s aversive. Me time is getting to know ourselves. How can we figure out who we want to be if we aren’t even sure who we are, in absence of the people who define us? Me time doesn’t have distractions. It might even be uncomfortable. So what. It will get easier.
Me time is the alone time we spend learning to be our own friend.
We talk the talk, that’s for sure! We’re always saying we need to love ourselves more. Sure, that sounds valid enough, but we do love ourselves. We just have a crappy way of showing it! What we need to do is like ourselves more. Me time is intimate. It’s just between me, myself, and I. Are you ready for that? If so, check out the 12 Things I’m doing to make me time about me, again!
Make a list of five things I’ve always wanted to do, but never did.
List five places I’ve always wanted to visit.
Write down five things I’d probably be good at, but never tried.
Try five things I’ve never tried before.
Make a list of five things that scare me.
Face my fears.
Write an honest letter to my younger self about who I’ve become and how I’ve changed.
Write a letter to my future self about what I know about myself, so far.
Do something out of character.
Make a list of 5 personal dreams.
Pick one dream as a goal.
Make my dream come true.
What would you add to this list? What would you take away. Are you ready to take back YOUR me time? Share your thoughts in the comments!
By: Alicia Gonzalez