If you have ever experienced a good foot massage, you would agree that it is great for both the sole and soul. Yet, how often do we really indulge ourselves? Somehow there is never enough time for fluffy stuff like that.
We all know that feeling of being BUSY!! It’s a space where we are short on time, feeling rushed, stressed and sometimes overwhelmed. Yet, if we dig a little deeper and check “What all have you accomplished today?” It may not be equal to how “BUSY” we supposedly were. Being excessively busy over a long period of time could possibly also reflect previous days of poor planning and lack of prioritization. So, chances are that we are busier in our heads than anywhere else. Being busy may not equal to being productive. Japan has the word KAROSHI (Death by overwork) but it ranks fairly low in productivity among the 7 key nations. To top it all, I sense people psychologically find it way cooler and more acceptable to say “I am busy” rather than to say “I have time”.
Nature is very fair in the sense that it credits all of us with same amount of time per day (1440 minutes to be exact) yet more than 80% of us feel we don’t have enough time, especially for ourselves. Many of my clients express regularly that they want to set goals for becoming better versions of themselves but don’t have time. A little inquiry usually leads to a revelation that it’s not time but priority that’s not in place. The rest is just some narrative we use to convince/console ourselves that time or the lack of it is the culprit. Work does not deplete our energy as fast as the feeling of un-accomplishment in a day does. A productive day usually leaves us with a feeling of greater energy.
I agree that the execution and completion of many things is inter-dependant on others as well and you may not be completely responsible there. However your own well being is an area that depends entirely on you. None of what you read below maybe new, yet the timelines given may surprise you, as you realise that many things that can add to our wellness are really things that can be accomplished in under 60 minutes. Our travel time (one of the biggest time wasters) and waiting time (queues, meetings, doctor/client appointments etc) can be used to do many of these well being hacks.
1. If you did not manage to wake up with a sense of gratitude, take out 5 minutes and be grateful for all that you have going well(write them down once for easy access). While expressing gratitude, breathe deep and long. This can be your first step to mindfulness/focus/meditation
2. Take 5 minutes to plan things that will make you feel productive by the end of day. (Visualize, make a mind map or just a to do list….all of them work)
3. Get your heart beat up, by doing any form of physical activity for minimum 25 minutes. (Climbing stairs/ a brisk walk to work/a walk while you brainstorm/ sitting less and standing more/ a quick run early morning or evening/ 12 surya-namaskars/playing with your kids or pet )
4. Reach out to one person( Family/ Friend/Colleague/Neighbor) through a phone call of 5 minutes and connect .( Listen deeply and Share openly, laugh and be silly)
5. Read for 15 minutes something that inspires you or helps you learn and grow. (if you don’t enjoy reading watch a great informative/learning video) or alternatively practice an old/new skill.
These 5 things mentioned above if done regularly tremendously add to my sense of well being. Even if as a parent or a working person I have had an unproductive day for whatever reason, those 60 minutes can make me feel better about my time spent. You can replace one or two of the above with a practice that holds meaning/joy for you.
I also am aware of people whose life circumstances often leave them with no emotional energy to invest in themselves; however that’s the vicious circle that needs to be broken. Seek help and break it!! The truth is that no matter how important we may feel being busy, no time for oneself DOES take a toll on our soul. The 2 most vital questions here being; How full is YOUR cup and how will you ever pour from an empty cup?
Originally published at www.linkedin.com