7 Strategies to get your much deserved “Me” Time

One of the tings I look forward to every day is my late afternoon walk with my dog.  It’s my time to completely disconnect from work and refill my cup so that I may be fully available to my girls when they come home from school. These days I’ve had the added benefit of enjoying some truly spectacular sunsets!

Sunset

But let’s be honest, taking some “me” time every day is not something we moms are particularly good at.  We are so concerned about providing for the needs of our loved ones that we easily push our own needs aside.  Yet we know that we not only deserve this time, we NEED it.  And the reality is that when we insist on this time for ourselves our whole family benefits.

Here are 7 simple strategies I use to make sure I’m not running on empty and can truly enjoy precious time I have with my girls.

Daily commitments to myself:

Personal time with God

I wake up half hour before everyone else and take this time to pray and meditate.  I cherish this time as it helps to keep me connected with what is important and helps me feel grounded.  I have a special place in my living room where I sit peacefully with a candle and my Bible. It’s an empowering way to start my day.

20 minutes of exercise

Right after dropping the girls off at school I take 20 minutes to exercise. I alternate between BURST or HIIT fitness, body sculpting and strength training.  Keeping this commitment to myself is really important. I love to exercise but I also know how easy it is to fall out of this healthy habit.

I used to take an awesome martial arts conditioning class that started at 9 every morning. I loved it!  It was energizing and gave me a boost that kept me going strong all day. I also loved the group of women I connected with each morning. We pushed and supported each other and best of all, had a lot of fun. Unfortunately that class was canceled and nothing was put in it’s place. I tried to find something else that appealed to me because I really thrive on that positive group format, but as of now, I haven’t found what suits me. So for the time being,  I’ve created a routine of my own.  The best part about this is that I get my daily exercise and I’m done, showered and ready to focus on work by 9:30 every morning.

Half hour lunch break

No matter how much work I have I make sure to take a real break and enjoy a healthy and tasty lunch.  This is a practice I had put in place when I owned my post production company. I hated working at my desk as is so often the norm in the industry and insisted on a clean break. I found that I made healthier lunch choices this way and was actually able to enjoy my food.  Now that I work from home, taking this break is just as important as it provides me with a nice clean, energizing break. Because I live in LA I often get to enjoy lunch on my terrace and soak up a little sun and peace and quiet. I’ve learned that this half hour of personal time fills me up and helps me focus and perform at my best for the afternoon.

Late afternoon walk

My husband picks the girls up from school every day for which I am grateful as it affords me the time for my late afternoon walk with my dog Farley.  I live up in the hills and I love being able to just escape, fill my lungs with fresh air and my spirit with peace.

Decompress time before bed

Time permitting I’ll indulge in a warm shower at night. It helps me wind down as the hot water eases away the tension of the day. I then brew myself a hot cup of lavender or chamomile tea and sit in my favorite chair with a book to immerse myself into. I’m an avid reader and always have at least half a dozen books I’m eager to dive into.  I mostly focus on non-fiction, books on nutrition, mindset, faith… books that expand my knowledge, challenge me and inspire me.

At least once a month but more often is even better… once a week if I can:

Time with my girlfriends

Whether I meet my girlfriends for coffee, a late brunch, a hike or walk on the beach this is time I look forward to and really relish.  I love my family and kids but I value this time to share freely with friends I can trust.  They are a great sounding board, women that support me and keep me honest, help me see a different perspective when I need to, and mostly, women with whom I can let my hair down and just be silly.

Indulge in some real pampering!

Over the last few years, I’ve taken time to attend conferences, some here in LA, others out of town.  I usually leave for 3 full days and I have to say I absolutely love this time out for myself! I come home refreshed and rejuvenated and happy to jump back into all the demands of being a mom.

I think this is something all moms should insist upon, whether it’s a conference, or a mini vacation with a girlfriend…

We juggle so much every day that personal refuel time is a must! Once a week indulge in a little pampering, whether it’s a massage a mani-pedi, paddle boarding, a visit to an art museum, whatever makes you feel special and fills your cup.

Then pull out a calendar a plan a weekend away at least every 3 months or so.  It may feel a little selfish at first but trust me, you’ll come to relish this time and your family will be happy to let you go for a few days when they see the transformation.  We so willingly travel here and there to take our children to swim meets, soccer tournaments, dance competitions, or whatever other passion of theirs we support, and we need to insist on a little “me” time every now and then.’

How good are you at carving out “me” time every day?  What are some of your special rituals?  Do you schedule time away from your family?

About Valerie 

Valerie Remy-Milora is the mother of 3 amazing girls, an author, public speaker, coach and founder of Scrumptious Moms. She is passionate about empowering moms to embrace self care and live a vibrant, joyful life with their loved ones. A health and fitness nut, she is an advocate for chemical-free living, real food and GMO labeling. She believes in the sanctity of life from conception to natural death.

Comments

  1. Great advice!! I did them ALL when I was raising our 3 kids. Taking time out helped me to be patient, refreshed, sharp, energetic, positive, and creative as I danced through motherhood. Kids feed off of our energy, moods, values, voice, eye contact, pace, laughter, tears, smiles, and touch. When we take time for us, we can give them our best. Follow Val’s advice…it works!

    Dr. Connie Hebert, Author of a new book for parents: The Teachable Minute: The Secret to Raising Smart & Appreciative Kids

    • You are such a wise woman Connie and I can’t wait to meet your children! Life is to be enjoyed and taking that personal time on a regular basis helps us to just that… for ourselves and our families! And yes our kids do feed off what we put out! I have certainly experienced that in both positive and negative ways. What I’ve also learned is that it is us moms that set that emotional tone. Even if our hubbies had a bad day at work, if we welcome them with a smile and are fully available emotionally then those worries don’t weight the entire evening down.

  2. Even if you don’t have children, these are all fantastic ways to renew. Some I already employ, and others I will definitely try! Beautiful picture!

    • Thank you Jacqueline! You are so right, mom or not, taking time out to disconnect is so important to our overall health and our enjoyment of Life! Can’t wait to hear how you incorporate some of these ideas and would love to know some of your special ways to indulge in “me” time 🙂

  3. Hello; I think its great that you let people know that they not only don’t have to be ashamed of taking me time but that it is absolutely necessary to their success personally and professionally to do so. I like the idea that you schedule in short breaks throughout the day and that it energizes you. And I know what you mean about taking an actual meal break. Fr many years I worked on my family’s children’s carnival and most of the time I ate whatever you could eat while still working. so now that I work from home I sit down in a comfortable chair and enjoy a leisurely meal. of course i am also a gastric surgery patient so i have to eat four to five small meals a day now. thanks for your excellent post and take care, Max

    • Max I’m happy you found this post inspiring. I’m glad you are taking the time to enjoy your meals. Don’t they taste much better that way? Four to Five small meals a day is a super healthy way to eat and one that everyone should consider adopting. I find that scheduling my “me” breaks makes it a lot easier to stay committed and, when needed to say “no” to other things. I’ve learned the hard way the importance of personal time and I afree with you that everyone should make a personal commitment to recharging several times a day. God Bless!

  4. Carving out me time has become more important to stay healthy. Stress is a killer and if you continue to beat your head up against a wall it will catch up with you. I never used to take me take because I felt guilty. I run a business and I was afraid to leave the computer because someone in the office may need me. I have learned that whatever is that important can wait until I am done taking care of me. I take 30 minutes everyday and walk on the tread mill. I take out 45 minutes everyday and go outside with my dog. I do 10 minutes doing agility with her and 35 minutes throwing the ball for my dachshund. This gives me so much pleasure. Great article.

    • Thank you Arleen! I love dachshunds! We had one for many years and he was such a treasure. I hear you about the guilt. I think that is what keeps most moms and entrepreneurs from insisting on personal time. It feels selfish! But there are times where being selfish is the most selfless thing to do! Clients, friends, family all will appreciate a more relaxed and available you! Congrats on making “me” time a priority in your life!

  5. Wow! I wish I could get all of that in! I get ‘Me’ time if I hop into the bath for a while as a luxury on top of the quick daily shower. A work from home husband plus I work from home and an 18 year old with friends… Pffft… Me time! lol Oh sorry if I go to CVS there’s 10 minutes right there now I guess I’m getting greedy : )

    • Haha Claire, you remind me of myself a few years back. I fell in love with aerial fitness and classes were all in the evening. As a mom with 2 young girls at the time I felt greedy asking for that time… and of course guilty! Yuk! Hated feeling that way. Thankfully my husband encouraged me to go to class and ensured me he and the girls would be fine without me. It was the best decision ever. I loved class so much I came home elated! Everyone was much happier and I learned the importance of my precious “me” time.

  6. In the hustle and bustle of life. it is so easy to set our needs aside for later. For some reason I was doing all of these things and have slowly stopped doing all of them. I know when I was doing my walk everyday life felt better. When I spend time with friend I laughed more. You have reminded me that I need to put some of these thing first instead of last. Thank you. 🙂

    • You are so welcome Susan! It is so easy to get caught up in everything and have no time for personal time. But I’ve learned that I am so much more pleasant and engaged with my girls and my husband when I do take that personal time that I now insist on it. I have found that scheduling smaller breaks throughout the day makes it a lot easier and I don’t feel guilty because I only look at that small amount of time right then and there. And the benefits are so huge that I feel guilty when I let anything get in the way 🙂 Laughter is such god medicine and connecting with friends in this age of technology is so important! Have fun reconnecting with YOU!

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