You are! You’re awesome, or at least you were created to be awesome. Are you feeling less than spectacular today? May I suggest you put yourself first?
What? But isn’t that selfish? You may be thinking, “I have kids, a job, a spouse, elderly parents, family members with special needs, etc., etc., etc., and they all need my help.” You’re right, they do need you, which is precisely why you must put yourself first to keep up with all of life’s demands.Did you know it’s NOT selfish to put yourself first? It really isn’t! However, taking care of yourself FIRST is different than ONLY taking care of yourself. The latter is selfish; the former actually ensures you’ll be able to take care of others and perform the daily tasks you need to accomplish better than if you ignore yourself.
This is a lesson I’m slowly learning myself. When I focus on all that I need to do for others – raising my children, running a home, caring for my husband, managing my part-time jobs, church and outreach activities, etc. – it is easy to be overwhelmed. I can feel tired before my day even gets started!
However, if I schedule some margin into my day, those little breaks that nourish my body and soul can make a wonderful difference in my attitude, my outlook on life, and my ability to perform the tasks of the day.
It will look different for all of us, but for me, I put myself first by taking 15 or 20 minutes in the morning to read and have a quiet start to my day; I take an hour or so (often with the kids!) to get a walk or some light exercise in – outdoors when the weather permits so we enjoy some fresh air and sunshine too! And then in the afternoon before dinner another 15-20 minutes to sip a cup of coffee and read a little bit.
These brief pauses in my day make a big difference! What white space do you have scheduled into your day? If your day is overrun with commitments and activities, where can you find 10-15 minutes to be calm and quiet?
I’d like to challenge you to try to find some moments to pause during your day. It doesn’t need to be a long block of time (though it certainly can be and maybe a longer pause every few days would be a great incentive to be more productive during the rest of your week!).
I’d love to hear how you’ll spend your margin time or when you’ll plan to fit it in during your day! Let’s put ourselves first, so we can give our best to the others we serve in our lives.