In the past year and a half I have really been neglecting myself. I worked way too much and was so exhausted I could barely stay afloat. People would tell me “welcome to the real world”. Full time job, buying groceries, making healthy meals, paying bills, cleaning the apartment, exercising, were all so new to me. I would keep on pushing myself because I thought that this was what being an adult what supposed to feel like. WRONG. There is no “supposed to feel”. I am on my way to accepting this and honestly, my ADHD diagnosis has really helped me to take a huge leap onto that path.
How am I going to overcome the self-neglect? First of all how am I going to spin “overcome self-neglect” positively? I am going to call it. “Practice Self Care”. I’m still not happy with the words, I don’t think that “Self Care” has a fun ring to it. Maybe I will come up with something else by the time I finish writing this blog.
I do not have a job, I do not have a boyfriend, I do not have children or other responsibilities. I don’t really have too much that is taking up my time. This is ALYSSA TIME! My goal is to put a system in place for myself so that when I do meet that guy that totally encompasses me and eats up all my thoughts and time, I will be able to take a step back and remember “what about you”. Same goes for a job; when I get overwhelmed by preparing myself a lunch, breakfast, getting ready and exercising all before starting work, I will be ok because I have a plan! Also, what about when I have kids?! How will I remember to take care of myself when they are pulling at my heart strings?! I tend to give way more time and energy than I receive/should. That is who I am and what I do but I’m starting to realize that it may not be totally healthy. This is a huge learning curve for me and I have a plan to manage it all!
I have constructed myself a system:
1. Component number one: I created a daily planner (on canva) to help me stay on track while I wait for another planner to arrive in the mail. This is what my temporary planner looks like (pretend like there aren’t two 8ams haha):
I am really excited about this planner because it has a full day schedule. This allows me to block time slots in my day so that I can have a clear picture of how much time I do (or don’t) have! There is also a spot in each day where I will write what I will have for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks! I have noticed lately that planning meals and snacks guzzles a lot of my time and planning ahead will solve that! I have a very long list of projects and to-dos. The I would like to accomplish section allows me to set realistic goals for myself.
2. Component number two. I created several lists:
- I would like to accomplish Daily (moisturize, exercise, floss, work on a project/TO DO, etc.)
- I would like to accomplish Every 2-3 days (paint nails, face mask, exfoliate)
- I would like to accomplish Once a week (relax and take a bath, plan meals for week, laundry)
- I would like to accomplish Every two weeks (support group, try a new recipe, plan to see friends)
- I would like to accomplish Once a month (try a new wine, buy a new book to learn, write a letter, go to a new bar, see a movie in the theatre, paint nite, go to thrift shop, board game night, a puzzle, a page from my adult coloring book, small getaway, etc.)
- I would like to accomplish Once a year (go on a trip)
There are some items on these lists that require a time limit. I am going to start to time myself during this upcoming week to see how long certain tasks take me. Example: shower. During my 26 years of living I have yet to figure out how long it takes me to shower! So timing how long it takes me to shower (several times so I can get an average) will enable me to better schedule my time. I will be able to schedule shower: 20 minutes on my planner. And since I know that my weakness is time, when I am in the shower I will also have a timer so that I will be able to stay on schedule!
I feel so silly that I have to create these lists for myself to “call my friend” or “plan fun activities”. Last week I was so busy planning our first meeting for the support group that I didn’t plan anything fun or do anything for myself! This left me a little down in the dumps and lonely this past weekend. Well, no more down in the dumps and loneliness for me now that I have my trusty lists!
These lists enable me to:
a) Figure out what is important to me.
b) Make sure that I schedule time for self care, spending time with those who matter to me, and last but not least, the extra fun stuff: try new things, going on adventures andddd learning! 🙂
How do you make sure that you take the time for self care?