(CARLSBAD, CA) – When was the last time you read a book for pleasure? How often do you pursue a hobby or personal interest? Are you spending enough time on things you like to do? If you find yourself hopelessly searching the archives of your memory for the last time you had a moment to yourself, join the millions of Americans who are experiencing the time famine epidemic.
Only one-half of Americans take all of the vacation days that they earn in a given year. Yet, researchers at the State University of New York at Oswego have determined that yearly vacations reduce a person’s overall risk of death by 20 percent. And the risk of death from heart disease is decreased by 30 percent!
For physical, mental, and emotional wellness, making time for yourself is paramount. Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett offers these tips for adding some “me time” into your schedule.
- Keep a time diary for one week - Find out if you are wasting time on multiple trips to the store. How can you consolidate errands? Also, take note of the positive activities in your recent past that energized you, and make plans to do these activities more often.
- Set a schedule for daily routines - A regular day-to-day routine helps your body to be in a rhythm. So, think about how you want to organize your day. Then, create a daily schedule that works for you.
- Run errands at off-peak times - Avoid the bank on Friday afternoons and the supermarket on Saturdays. Try to run errands at times when facilities are less crowded. You may find that you save one or two hours each week, which you can use however you wish.
- Create a support network – Look for people in your similar station-in-life, who can form a network of mutual support. If you have kids, team-up with other moms to trade-off childcare for a mom’s day out. In the workplace, find one or two trusted co-workers to talk with during times of stress.<
- Make dates with yourself – Block off time in your schedule for activities that you want to do. It may be gardening, reading a book, or window shopping. Whatever your activity of choice, make these dates non-negotiable. Don’t “pencil them in,” with intentions to erase them later if another obligation comes up.
- Take five – At the beginning and end of each day, take five minutes for yourself. Read a poem. Take a walk. Meditate. Write in a journal. Take a bubble bath. Watch a sunrise or sunset.
While you likely have many people who depend upon you (your boss, your spouse, your kids), remember that you can’t give to anyone else when you are running on empty. Make yourself a priority, and you may just find that not only you, but also those around you, benefit from your revitalized spirit.
Jazzercise, created by Judi Sheppard Missett, is the world's leading dance-fitness program with more than 7,500 instructors teaching 32,000 classes weekly in the U.S. and around the globe. Since 1969, millions of people of all ages and fitness levels have reaped the benefits of this comprehensive program, designed to enhance cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.