17 Ways to Make Space for “me” time.
By Neil Legault
Today’s society is all go-go- go… We have been so accustomed to squeezing in many activities, projects and people into our schedule it’s hard for us to have the space in our lives to enjoy our journey. Not only is it just activities and people, we also have been accustomed to living a certain way that fills our space. Our busy and cluttered lives hinder our ability to connect with ourselves and spend quality time enjoying our experience of life.
Making “Space” is the key word here. Space comes in 3 forms and when we fill up all our available space, we become dysfunctional, tired, disconnected and depressed. Not having enough space is an energy drainer. Making space is also essential to any spiritual practice if you want to really connect with your life.
These 3 areas are:
1) In your mind
2) In your activities
3) In your environment
This is your life and every day that you don’t have the time to smell the roses is one day less you have to enjoy it. Space and time are almost the same. Time is time. That’s the easy one. Space on the other hand is psychological. When we have lots of physical and mental clutter around we feel weighted down, heavy and our energy drains.
Below are 17 ways to slow down and simplify to create space and time in your life.
1. Don’t fill empty space with junk. We have a tendency to fill every minute with something. Stop and smell the roses. Do absolutely NOTHING for a while. If you have troubles doing it it’s because you have a compulsion to fill in the gaps. This compulsion is like a fear of emptiness.
2. Reduce the time you spend with the TV or Computer. Are you starting to feel that life is getting artificial? Spend 1 day doing stuff outdoors with no electronics and compare your state of being. You will see a big difference in your quality of life.
3. Get rid of your junk. Getting rid of all the stuff you have and NEVER use will make you feel like a load is off your back. The lighter you are with less “stuff” the more you will feel freer. More energy.
4. Eat, walk and do stuff slowly. We rush, rush, and rush. All the stuff we usually want to enjoy we tend to put aside or rush through so we can get somewhere else faster.
5. Take your time. Whether you are shopping, gardening, or whatever, practice going slower and taking lots of time doing it. This will help you slow down.
6. Be present. Again, slowing down on purpose helps you be more present.
7. Plan to finish or abandon. Having “unfinished projects” all over the place stops you from enjoying the moment. Either plan to finish your project or decide that you don’t want it anymore and get rid of it. Once you decide and finish or abandon you will feel lighter and have more energy.
8. Simplify your home, desk, office. Seeing your space uncluttered and minimal makes you feel light on your feet, organised and clean. It’s an energy booster.
9. Take a look at your priorities. Make a list of what’s important in your life. Are you spending your time on them now? If not then when?
10. Reduce unneeded activities. If your friends, neighbours or family routinely ask or invite you to do stuff that is mildly interesting, cut back or stop! Spend your quality time and space on you.
11. Empty your mind. The busier you are the more you have on your mind. Emptying it regularly is a meditation. If you are afraid to forget something write it down. Make a list. This helps you not having to remember it every second.
12. Focus on simple pleasures. Focusing on simple pleasures keeps the pace slow and allows you to enjoy being here.
13. Meditate. Meditation is about stopping the mind from taking over and allowing you to be present in your experience of life.
14. Enjoy doing dishes. Every moment you are doing something, try to enjoy doing it. Pretend as if you have all the time in the world and there is no need to do anything quickly. Simple chores have now become spacious. It’s a meditation.
15. Leave space between activities. We have a tendency to pack a lot in a day. Whether they’re appointments, or things you need to do, don’t stack them back-to-back. You will feel less rushed.
16. Reserve time for you. Especially in relationships. Book and reserve time for you to be on your own away from your home and friends. Being on your own helps you regain a focus on you.
17. And MOST importantly, Learn to say NO. Many people have problems saying NO. We have a tendency to say “yes” to almost anybody… Mostly because we feel obligated or feel that we will hurt their feelings if we say no. No stops others from taking up your time and space especially with useless stuff or their garbage. These are energy suckers and you want to keep your energy up!
Just say NO!
Here is a simple guide to follow when looking at your life:
1. Identify what’s important to you.
2. Remove everything else.
3. Take your time to enjoy.
When you have space in your life you make room for life to happen to you. It also allows you to spend more time connecting with life.