I’m writing today while sitting at the nail salon getting a pedicure. It’s one of the luxuries that I treat myself to once a month or so. Traditionally I feel guilty about anything that spends money on myself instead of someone else, but after wearing heels all week at work and running in the evenings I have managed to convince myself that it is okay to treat myself every once in a while. It has taken quite a while to not feel remorse for splurging when I check out after the pedicure, but I’m starting to see that it is important to take a little bit of time for myself sometimes.
I don’t have kids. Instead I have a very self-sufficient boyfriend and a lovingly patient dog. I know those of you with children are probably rolling your eyes and huffing at me like some teenage adolescent because you can’t fathom why I even need “me time.” This has been a new experience for me since I received my Fibromyalgia diagnosis over a year ago. I grew up as a dancer and learned early the motto of “no pain, no gain.” In retrospect this might be a reason why it took me so long to stand up and voice my concerns about how bad the pain I was experiencing was, but I am glad I now know what it is.
Dancing also taught me to work hard and fully dedicate myself to whatever project I am working on. Somewhere in my early twenties that transitioned over to my personal life and I began dedicating myself to catering to those around me. Pretty soon I was exhausting all the energy I had taking care of others like they were my children. I was frequently finding myself severely sick and despite barely being able to stand I was refusing to slow down and take a day off from work. Since then I have learned the importance of taking “me” time in order to keep myself healthy both mentally and physically. It is now a rarity for me to be sick and as usual I still can’t justify taking off from work if I am.
Whether you’re a student, parent, manager, or everyone’s “go to” friend it is important to take time out for yourself occasionally. It makes you a more focused student, re-energized parent, reasonable manager or reliable friend. Taking time for your self actually helps you to help others even more. Give it a shot and spoil yourself with a small treat for a change. Consider it a thank you from everyone for all you do for them on a daily basis.