Take Ten for Yourself

A friend of mine complained about how overwhelmed she was at work and how she felt stressed and tired. She is self–employed like me, and sometimes I think you work even harder and longer hours when you work for yourself. I responded, “Give yourself a ten minute break each hour.”

Put Time on Your Side

There never seems to be enough time in the day when you are juggling family, work, community and social commitments, finances and myriad other activities that comprise your schedule. A friend taught me long ago to stop spending all my time on others and start saving time for myself. I took her advice and added a little “me time” every day.

It made a difference on my stress level. “Me time” can be a workout, getting your nails, visiting a friend, baking a cake or meditating…whatever it takes to make you unwind. It’s not being selfish; it’s taking care of your self. No one wants a stressed out parent or spouse, and you want to stay healthy for yourself and your loved ones.

“Me time” can be whatever time you can afford spend on yourself. But you have to make the time. If you don’t have an hour for the gym, take 15 to 30 minutes to stretch and exercise at home. Try taking ten minute breaks during the day to get up and recharge. A brisk walk outside will clear your head and rev up your energy at minimal cost.

Five Ways to Take Ten

It’s easier than you think. You just need to make the effort:

  • If you work at your desk, take ten minutes to get up, stretch you body and touch your toes to relax any tension, tight shoulders and back
  • Take a ten minutes to connect with someone: write a letter, send a card, or call a friend for a quick chat
  • Take a brisk ten minute walk, even if it is only around the yard or down the street and back. Walking the dog is always good.
  • Take ten minutes to apply moisturizing lotion to your face and body and just sit back, take a few deep breaths and roll your neck to loosen any tension before getting dressed or before bed
  • Take a ten minute coffee or tea break and read something you enjoy….not work emails!

What’s your rush? Will it make that big of a difference? Taking ten minutes will.

Published on: June 27, 2013
About the Author
Photo of Melanie Young

Women’s empowerment advocate, marketing specialist and breast cancer survivor Melanie Young is author of Getting Things Off My Chest: A Survivor's Guide to Staying Fearless and Fabulous in the Face of Breast Cancer

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