Monday, 15 April 2013

M is for - Making Time For Yourself

Time for Tea  - Maria A Smith
Be kind to yourself. For the sake of your sanity you need to be happy and well. Many writers have jobs, alas, writing isn't their main source of income, it is more likely they are rising early, or staying up late, or perhaps both, so they can work on their projects. Be it a novel, stage play, or a series of articles. Whatever, you're working on, you need down time.

It doesn't have to be anything huge. Its taking time out that is most important, so I've written a list of ideas below, and if you haven't made time for yourself in the last week. Put a note in your diary now!
Personally, I try to do some small thing for my sanity every day of the week if I can.

  • Take a long luxurious bath - pour in some scented bubbles, light candles, set your MP3 to play your favourite music softly in the background, and lie back and wallow. 
  • Make a cup of tea - A simple cup of tea can do wonders. Tea not only rehydrates, as well as water does, it also protects against heart disease and possibly cancers too, according to some nutritionists. So kick off your shoes, put your feet up and sit and savour all those good antioxidants. 
  • Walk, run, cycle, swim or dance - It doesn't matter which, just get moving! Exercise boosts energy and improves mood, as well as keeping weight under control, it also improves muscle strength and boosts endurance, which is why we feel fresh and alert when we sit back at our desk after a brisk walk.
  • Do something different - Learn to bake bread, crochet a hat, drive a rally car, join the choir? Seriously, take a one day workshop away from your normal day to day life. It will energise you on many levels. You'll no doubt meet new people, learn something, and most likely have a laugh too.
  • Eat cake! - Works every time for me. Victoria Sponge, Coffee Gateaux, Carrot cake, you name it, I'm up for trying it. You might prefer to eat something else, and thats fine, just go out and do it. Preferably with a friend, so the two of you can laugh and giggle at how silly the world is on the outside, and spend some time together.
  • Retail Therapy - I'm not usually won over by shopping. However, I quite like going out to mooch around for half an hour in the stationary store to look at all the lovely notebooks, or I'll browse around the cosmetics counter for a new lipstick, and perhaps try a new perfume while I'm there. I'm sure the men reading this post can saunter around the motorbike shop, DIY store, or  their favourite football teams retail outlet.
  • Listen to music - Never underestimate the power of music. When slow rhythms are played our blood pressure and heartbeat slows down, and we breath more slowly. Music releases tension.

There you have it then - prioritise yourself for a change - to coin a phrase, 'because you re worth it!'

Come back afterwards and tell me what you did?


  1. Oh, Maria - this is my O post! To be fair, yours has much more specific detail than mine and is aimed squarely at writers. Good post, as usual.

    For me, it's going for a long run whilst thinking about writing or watching a film that I know only I will like!

  2. I'm looking forward to reading it already, new ideas are good.

    I like to watch a film on my own now and again, probably because, being a writer, I am also thinking about how it was written!

  3. Excellent advice - especially the tea and cake parts. I shall be following those two very enthusiastically.

  4. Lovely post, Maria, I want to eat lots of cake now! :)

    My favourite way to make time for myself is to read a novel or watch a film. I also have an unhealthy obsession with Homes Under the Hammer, so I've always got a pre-recorded list to work through when I have the time :)

  5. A great list. I'd add, find the time to read a good book or maybe take it in the bath with you.

    1. It has been known! Lately I take my MP3 player and listen to jazz...

  6. A great post Maria. I take a long shower, go for a walk, meditate as well as the tea and cake cure. On my writing days, to ensure I take a full hour lunch, I watch an episode of Columbo or Vampire Diaries - yes an eclectic mix but neither relate to my book genre. A little light departure helps my brain relax lol

    1. Sounds like an excellent plan...

  7. Eat cake? Well, if you insist...

    1. I do, everyone should eat cake and drink tea and be happy! ;-)


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