Do you struggle with creating time for self-care? Does it feel like there is never enough time in the day to get everything done, much less have time for yourself?
If you want to find ways to create more time for self-care, then this post is for you. You will learn how to truthfully tell others, “Self-care is part of my daily routine!”
Obviously, we can’t actually create more time. What we can do, though, is find times within our days to practice self-care. It is not as hard as you think or you have told yourself.
Table of Contents
Why You’re Not Creating Time for Self-Care
Before I discuss the stops for creating time for self-care, we need to look at why it doesn’t exist in your life right now. There are typically three reasons that we don’t practice self-care.
The first reason is that many of us don’t believe we deserve time for ourselves. Now, this is often subconscious.
If you were asked if you believed you deserved time for self-care, you would probably say yes. However, you don’t truly believe that or you would create the time somehow.
Often, we are busy taking care of everybody else. That’s the second reason we don’t practice self-care. Our time is consumed with taking care of everybody but ourselves.
Sadly, that results in us not being able to take care of our loved ones as best as we could. If you’re running on empty, it’s incredibly hard to give others the best version of yourself.
Now, for the third reason we don’t create time for self-care. This one is pretty simple. We don’t have a clue what self-care would even look like for us.
Very few of us are lucky enough to have somebody model self-care during our formative years. Think about it. Do you know anybody who can honestly say, “Self-care is part of my daily routine?”
So, how are we supposed to do something we’ve never been taught? If you want to learn more about this, read my post What is Self-Care.
The Barrier to Creating Time for Self-Care
Before you start reading the steps on how to create more time for self-care, we need to let go of one thought. Most people believe that self-care of any sort and for any amount of time is really difficult.
I want you to understand that belief is FALSE! Creating time for self-care is NOT hard and is absolutely attainable and sustainable. Are you willing to consider that what I just told you is true? If so, then you’re ready to read and follow my steps for creating more time for self-care.
4 Steps for Creating Time for Self-Care:
- Choose an amount of time you are willing to commit to self-care each day as you start out. I recommend only committing to two to five minutes. We all have two to five minutes each day when we can put a pause on our life.
- Write a list of activities that you enjoy that consist of the time frame you chose in Step One. This is important because you don’t want your self-care time to roll around and you have no clue what do to.
- Set a reminder on your phone for the time you choose each day. I recommend doing the same time each day so it can start becoming a part of your normal, daily routine.
- This is the easiest step. Make the decision that your self-care time begins tomorrow. It might even be beneficial to have an accountability partner.
Explanation of Steps for Creating Time for Self-Care Ideas
An explanation of each of these steps is easy, even though they seem pretty self-explanatory. You might be wondering why I only recommend committing to only two to five minutes.
As I said, everybody can find two to five minutes in their day to not be busy. I don’t care who you are or how busy you tell yourself and everybody else you are! You have that tiny bit of time every single day if you choose to use it for yourself.
Here’s a warning! Please do not dismiss my recommendation of two to five minutes. Do not over commit because you think such a small amount of time will not be beneficial.
Creating time for self-care is a process. Once you have mastered the two to five minutes a day, you can increase it a little more.
For the Second Step, don’t spend too much time thinking about what this could be for you. Please do not consider social media as a self-care activity! It is NOT!
Something as simple as walking to your mailbox and back a couple of times could be your self-care activity. It does not have to be hard or grand in any way!
Being Intentional About Creating Time
Step Number Three is very important. Do NOT forget this one! Our lives tend to move so quickly and, if we are not absolutely intentional about creating time for self-care, it is not going to happen.
You know good and well that we keep our phones glued to us for the most part. So, when your self-care reminder goes off, you will have to make a conscious decision.
There are only to options. Take your two-to-five-minute self-care break or don’t. My advice here is DO NOT HIT SNOOZE or TURN OFF your reminder.
Think about it. If you hit snooze or turn it off, you know you will not do it later.
The “C” Word “Commitment”
Now, you are ready for Step Four: Commitment. Don’t run off because I used the “C” word. My guess is that you commit to do many things for other people.
So, now it’s just time to use that “C” word for yourself. You deserve it! Choose your day. I’m pretty sure tomorrow is available for you and anybody else.
Finding an Accountability Partner
The second part to Step Four is also not as difficult as some might believe. Finding an accountability partner does, however, require you to ask for help.
Most of us are not good as asking for help. If that’s you, then this is an opportunity for you to add this to your journey of healing.
Before you find an accountability partner, I want to give you one little suggestion. Don’t expect or require them to create time for themselves as you are going to be doing.
It is not our job to make sure others are practicing self-care. Simply tell them how you’d like to be held accountable, such as a text, email, phone call, etc. Explain what you are committing to with these steps.
If they decide to join you in creating time for self-care, that’s great. You can be each other’s accountability partners. Again, do not expect them to do it.
You don’t need them to do it with you. If you feel like you do, then we need to look at some codependency struggles. That’s a post for another day though.
How These Steps Can Work for You
We have looked at each of these steps. So, now I need to address a question that may have popped into your mind while reading this.
How can a mere two to five minutes a day change my life for the better? The smarty pants little four-year-old in me wants to ask you, “If you haven’t done it, how can you question it or know it would or wouldn’t be helpful?”
Putting my sarcastic four-year-old aside now, let me explain how that two to five minutes of self-care a day can benefit you.
Our lives are often so chaotic and filled with “stuff” every minute of the day. Just taking a few minutes a day can allow you to reset your mind. It can relax your body and allow you to shift your energy to a more positive space.
How Mary Beth Fox Creates Time for Self-Care
Here’s an example of how two to five minutes of self-care benefits me. I have a baby. Technically, he’s a toddler but I will probably call him a baby until he starts kindergarten.
As with any parent, I can get overwhelmed in that role. I am a stay-at-home working mom running two different businesses. There are many times throughout my day that I need a quick reset so that I can be the best mommy for my baby.
I usually don’t have time for thirty minutes or more of self-care. What I do have is the ability to take a short pause from being a mom, a boss and a business owner.
I take those short pauses multiple times a day. Typically, it’s just stepping outside for a few minutes.
If I didn’t take those little self-care breaks, I would not be a very patient or emotionally present mom for my baby. That is not an option because my baby deserves to have a patient and emotionally present mom.
After my self-care breaks, my energy has shifted and I can pick right back up with whatever I was doing in a much better frame of mind. I don’t have any guilt from taking those breaks because I know it is what is best for me and my family.
Mary Beth’s Guarantee
I can guarantee you that if you follow these steps for Creating Time for Self-Care that you will see improvements in your ability to handle whatever your day throws at you.
Life is unpredictable. Don’t let self-care be unpredictable.
Creating time for self-care is truly one of the most important things in life. I don’t want to even think about how I’d feel every day if I didn’t get my self-care breaks!
Let me know when you begin Step One and how you are doing with these steps. You deserve to take better care of yourself and these steps teach you a simple way to do that!
This site is only intended for people who are truly willing to look at themselves with an open mind and have the ability to truly be vulnerable with themselves and others. Please understand that this site is in NO WAY THERAPEUTIC ADVICE. However, this site can be very beneficial in learning the causes of your Not Good Enough Stuff. This site is not intended to provide or replace medical or psychiatric treatment. Mary Beth HIGHLY RECOMMENDS finding a licensed therapist to help you process the information from this site and all that you learn about yourself. Visit Psychology Today to find a licensed therapist in your area.