Open up social media, and you’ll see a plethora of images talking about being on the grind, and promoting the need to continuously hustle in order to stay one step ahead of the competition. While I’m “All about the “Benjamins”, it seems that our modern day way of living may be hurting us, making us sick and in some cases, killing us softly. People are harried, rushed, overworked, have less leisure time, less quality time with family, and are tethered to technology. So, what happens when we deprive ourselves of self care? We fall into fatigue, anxiety, depression, overwhelm, and in some cases, suicide. A study by the Bureau of Labor reported that more than 25 million Americans worked at least 49 hours a week, some worked more than 59 hours a week. Arianna Huffington’s book, “The Sleep Revolution”, explores the science of sleep and how it impacts our weight, disease occurrence, decision-making, our work, our personal lives, our community, and our world. In “Thrive”, she wrote about the need for us to redefine our idea of success in order to have a more fulfilling life. What this all means is that it’s time to get a little bit selfish, because your life depends on it. Here are 11 tips you must implement now to reclaim your life:
1. Establish daily rituals. Create rituals that restore, reset and re-invigorate you. Every morning, I put my hand over my heart, take a deep breath and give thanks. I pray, and then read teachings that inspire me. I also read a daily devotional, meditate, workout, then I’m ready for the day. My nighttime ritual includes prayer, recognizing the day’s accomplishments, and using aromatherapy.
2. Cut your task list in half. I used to schedule myself with back to back appointments. I ended up not finishing my list and being frustrated. I learned to prioritize and cut down my list, which resulted in higher productivity and satisfaction.
3. Take breaks. Make mental health breaks as important as scheduling business meetings. Schedule time into your day to do something pleasurable. Read a chapter of a book, do a quick workout or turn up the music and dance!
4. Naps are good. They give you more clarity, alertness, relieve stress, enhanced focus, creativity, and productivity. Find a private, quiet space to nap, or just pause for a few.
5. Get a good night’s rest. As I was building my business, I worked 20 hour days. I got a lot accomplished, but was exhausted. When I began to get at least seven to eight hours of sleep a night, my life changed. Caring for my body was the gift that kept on giving. I’m able to get more done, more enjoyably.
6. Say “no” to your cell phone. We are constantly reaching for our cellphones. According to Network World, the heaviest smartphone users click, tap or swipe their phone 5,427 times a day. This is addictive, affects posture, vision, and causes anxiety. Also, by responding right away to every text, notification, or ring, you’re letting other people and technology control your time. Turn off notifications and put your phone on silent. Use it as the tool that it was designed to be and communicate when you need to.
7. Implement “Me” days. I have regular “Maimah Days”, where I don’t schedule any appointments. I spend the day reading, working out, enjoying time with a friend, pampering myself, writing and thinking. My “cheat” play day gives me a wonderful boost to conquer the rest of the week and sparks my creativity.
8. Take Vacations. You think you can’t afford them? You can’t afford not to. Not only will you reconnect with yourself and loved ones, but taking time away helps to lower your blood pressure, anxiety and heart rate, which in turn lowers your risk of heart disease and illness. If money is an issue, do a staycation at a local hotel or treat yourself at home.
9. Invest in Self Improvement. Investing in yourself is the best way to achieve your highest potential. Investing in me has given me incredible benefits - emotionally, mentally, spiritually, physically, financially and in relationships - with others and myself.
10. Say “No”. You committed to going to the gym regularly, but your buddies want to grab a drink. You stop by for a bit, and at the end of the night, all you’ve lifted are a few cocktails. I get invited to lots of events and love my friends, so I said “yes” to everything. But I found myself feeling stretched and stressed. I learned to say “no”, more, prioritize, and to say “yes” to me.
11. Stop Giving It Away for Free. I’m a recovered chronic giver and people pleaser. I’d spend hours giving friends advice. In my professional life, people wanted to pick my brain. It gave me a high to see someone shift or turn a concept into a business because of my advice, but what I was doing was giving coaching, business development and marketing services away for free. I was undervaluing myself. So, while I still help others, I got some training, set up a website, coaching packages and added a price tag. Now, I get paid for my gifts and talents.
Being more selfish doesn’t mean you don’t care about others. Quite the opposite, it means that you value yourself enough to create the life that you want. A healthy selfishness can lead to incredible healing and spiritual discovery. It can also lead to a wonderful relationship with yourself.
Until next time, live bliss, pursue your passion and manifest magic! To be a guest on my Pure Bliss podcast or get coaching on how to Manifest Your Magic, contact me here!
Much love, Bliss Boss, Maimah.