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Hey guys! Sorry to take so long to publish my first post of this month. It’s been quite crazy busy so far (too many friends’ birthday celebrations, choreographing a program for a skating show, interviewing for a new job, and so much more on top of coaching and my job), and so I’ve been neglecting writing a post. Well, no more!

If you didn’t know already, May is Mental Health Awareness Month. This something that’s FINALLY starting to become less taboo, but it’s still something that I don’t think we talk about enough. In this day and age, people are more stressed and less happythan any of the generations before us (especially in the U.S.—we’re among the most stressed people in the world). (Don’t believe me? Click those links and read, people.) And because of those facts we really should be taking more time for ourselves, and talking about things when we’re not feeling ok (because it is ok to not be ok).

Like I mentioned before, I live a very busy lifestyle: I get home after 8:30 pm a minimum of 3 days DURING the work week; I also coach ice skating on the side, so I only get 1 day off working a week; and living this crazy city means there’s always people to see and things to do, so even on my days off, I’m usually out and about. Now I don’t want to seem like I’m complaining here, because I am very selective in the people I let into my life and I only pursue things that I am very passionate about. All I’m saying is that while I love all these things I do, sometimes they can just take it out of you.

And that’s why I make sure to do small things during the day for myself. I’m a very independent person, and I LOVE my me time. But it’s really hard to have me time sometimes. Which is why I started to really make sure that I do things just for me everyday. Here are 7 things that I do everyday to make sure that I’m taking time for myself:

1. I listen to calming music while getting ready.

The first thing I do every morning is open my blinds. I prefer to use natural light to get ready and even put my vanity by my windows to utilize that. And as I put my makeup on and get dressed I also play calming music. I have about 7 or 8 playlists that I curated specifically for certain moods, and the playlist I listen to in the morning is meant to bring calm and positive energy (I literally named the playlist “calm.”). I really like to listen to it in the morning because I think it sets my mood and gets me excited to start the day.

2. I read on the subway.

I am an avid reader. Always have been, always will be. And as a writer, I find that reading helps to spark my creativity and is important for language skills, which is why I try to do it so often. I read usually 2 books per month (depending on their length), and most of my reading is done on the subway. I don’t like to listen to music on the subway because I think it’s ignorant. I think that there is so much that we can learn about the world by listening to the sounds of nature and people. People put their headphones in because they don’t want to talk to other people and maybe that’s the reason no one talks anymore. Just sayin.

3. I spend 15 minutes reading the news while eating my breakfast as soon as I get to the office.

So after I read, I read some more. But this time it’s news. I think it’s extremely important to know what’s going on in the world, and I prefer to read my news, as opposed to watching it (it’s usually more fact based than story based). I don’t like to feel rushed, and so by taking a few minutes to read and eat my breakfast, I feel like I have just a little bit of time to get settled before I have to get to business.

4. I take walks during lunch.

I’m one of those people that can’t sit still for too long. I get really antsy and always feel the need to move around (it’s why I walk to the printer and bathroom a lot at my job). And I don’t like how sedentary I am during the day when I work (I have to be at a computer to do everything for my job). And so as an effort to be more active, I take walks during my lunch break. I spend about 15 minutes actually eating, and then for 45 minutes I walk outside (if the weather’s nice) or around the store (when it isn’t). By just walking around I discover new shops and food spots that I wouldn’t have noticed before.

5. I go to the gym.

Ok, so this one I don’t do EVERYDAY, but that’s because you really should have rest days. I do try to be ACTIVE everyday, however. See #4. But I LOVE to workout. I find it so cathartic, and I’ve been really trying to live a healthier lifestyle more recently. This is the one time where I will plug my headphones in and literally tune EVERYTHING out. I also prefer going to the gym by myself. I find that going with other people holds me accountable, but that’s why I go to classes and not with friends. I’m too competitive, so if I go with friends I can’t help it, I make it a competition. And working out should be about bettering yourself and taking care of YOUR body. And by going by myself I can do that.

6. I watch TV (by myself).

So this might just seem antisocial, but I swear it’s not. I honestly watch TV after work with my roommate almost everyday. We have shows that we watch together. But I also make sure that I have at least one TV show that I watch by myself. We have a constant need to connect to other people, which is why people love when they watch the same TV show as you. You instantly have something to talk about. But I like having a show that I can just watch—no interruptions, no one asking questions. I also tend to prefer TV shows that I can learn things from, so crime dramas, law shows, medical shows, etc. Yes, they are definitely dramatized and I’m sure not everything there is factually correct, but I get more out of it than watching soapy teen dramas.

7. I meditate for 5 minutes before going to bed.

This is something I just started to implement. And I still don’t do it everyday, but I’m making it more of a priority. I usually just sit on my bed with my eyes closed and either reflect on my day or just let my brain wander. Sometimes I listen to music and sometimes I don’t. But really I just want to take a few minutes to decompress. And I want time to not look at a screen before I go to bed (gotta save my eyesight!).

So, those are the few things I do for myself everyday in a nutshell. Making time for yourself is important. And it's something we all need to do more often. Otherwise we're just going to burn out faster. And as you can see from my list of things, making time for yourself doesn't mean you have to make major changes. All the things I do are small! And yours can be, too! What are some of the things you guys do for you? Do you make yourself a priority? Let me know in the comments below! Til next time!




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