“Just say no” is common advice for getting control of your time, but have you ever thought about how often you say “no” to yourself? If you’ve been last on the to-do list one time too many, you need these tips to experience the power of saying yes to yourself:
Say YES to caring for yourself physically
No one else is going to do it for you. Sometimes we work too hard and too long, hoping that someone will notice and offer to take care of us. Let’s face it, most people are too busy with their own stuff to realize we’re sinking. That’s not fair to others anyway. Own up to your responsibility to take care of yourself physically. It’s not noble to keep going and run yourself into the ground–it’s plain foolish. It’s better for you, your family and your business to be strong and energetic.
Take care of basic physical needs. Before you stop reading, do a self-checkup. Are you getting enough rest? Yes? Then why do you doze off every time you sit still for 40 seconds? How much water are you drinking? Often fatigue is actually dehydration. Perhaps you should check into taking supplements to improve your health and energy. And don’t forget exercise. If you’re not an exercise type, start small and simple. Take a walk or a bike ride. Use an at-home fitness DVD. Start with five minutes and work up to 15-20 minutes per day during the week. Keep it doable so you won’t get overwhelmed. I lost 100 pounds by doing this.
Say YES to caring for yourself mentally
Take time for recreation and relaxation. When was the last time you enjoyed yourself and relaxed? What is it about that experience that you could duplicate on a regular basis? Don’t save life for your vacation coming up in three months. Simple things like window shopping, lunch with a friend or date night with your spouse can refresh your mind and body.
Keep your relationships up to date. As a parent, spouse and friend, remember that life has no rewind button. You don’t get to run the tape for a second showing. Your relationships should be a safe place to unwind and love. If they’re not, that’s even more reason to care for yourself by getting them there.
Stay aware of stress levels. When I was younger, I ignored warning signs of stress and blamed others or what I “had” to do when I crashed. As an older (and hopefully, wiser) woman I pay close attention to what’s going on with my stress levels, and how I feel mentally and physically. A great deal of stress is related to how we allow ourselves to think and the systems we create to handle our work. Know thyself and know when it’s time to care for your mental state.
Have some fun. Laughter and fun truly are the best medicine. Intentionally provide yourself with opportunities to laugh. Funny movies, humorous YouTube videos or just being around funny people can help you relax and get a good laugh. Taking a mental break for some fun can help you come back to work with creativity and fresh perspective. Life is too short to not have fun!
Say YES to caring for yourself
Be sure to take time for personal development. Your thoughts, attitude, time management, and beliefs about yourself and your business are all part of your personal development. Working on yourself directly affects your business, including your Social Media presence. Proactively seek out ways to teach, train and feed yourself with audios, books, courses and coaching. If you’re not a reader, then listen. If you’re not an auditory type, I dare you to give it a try. I didn’t think I was, but listening to audios has changed my life for the better. Invest in yourself to be successful.
Check the mirror before you go to work. Working at home is great, but it’s easy to get into a habit of looking sloppy every day. We don’t have to wear pearls and heels or a three-piece suit, but let’s wash our hair and wear decent clothes, shall we? How we are dressed affects our performance, period. Looking nice helps us feel confident. You may think, “No one is going to see me,” but your spouse, children and the UPS man will appreciate a nice view.
Pay attention to your surroundings. Actually you’re already paying attention, whether you realize it or not. A cluttered, dirty environment nags in the back of your mind. Straighten it up and add some touches to reflect your personality. Get some cool office supplies and buy yourself some fresh flowers or a green plant. It may sound silly, but the small details make a difference. Gazing upon beauty isn’t just a poetic thought, it’s a basic human need. You may not think you care, but once your office space is orderly and pleasant, you’ll feel the difference.
To create the power of saying YES to yourself in your own life, take these simple actions this week:
- Choose one thing you’re NOT doing to care for yourself physically and do it today.
- Schedule at least one mental break activity this week (work up to more!)
- Start spending ten minutes a day on something related to your self—personal development, appearance or surroundings (whichever area is most lacking at this time). Ten minutes a day adds up to sixty hours in a year.
No overwhelm allowed. That’s probably how you started neglecting yourself in the first place. Keep it simple, but do say YES–to yourself and your success.