Me Time & Guilt

by Evelyn J. Mocbeichel

A health segment on the radio caught my attention because of the information it shared about “what makes us happy and keeps us as healthy as possible.” Most of the conversation was common sense, but one tip caught my attention because it was something most people hardly ever do. The program’s guest speaker, a doctor, talked about de-stressing by having “me” time. He suggested that everybody should have at least two hours a day doing something they find fun, relaxing or entertaining. Who do you know that does that? It made me think of magazine articles I read decades ago about how much time a woman should spend on beauty treatments and preparations each day. It was something ridiculous like at least an hour and half between facial moisturizing, putting on makeup and selecting an outfit for work. Knowing I had to commute and drive in traffic each day, breakfast was quickly eaten, an outfit selected in fifteen minutes, hair combed in five and lipstick applied, about thirty seconds. There was little time, even on weekends for pampering and spending two hours a day simply doing a self beauty treatment.

How much do we take care of ourselves?  This may seem like a simple question, but when you think about it, most of our time is usually spent running around taking care of someone or something else. How do we stay or become healthy and de-stressed?

What does being “healthy” really mean?  A simple definition would be feeling 100% good, 100% of the time.  Feeling good should include your mental, physical, and emotional state.  How much time do most people spend on themselves each day?  Can you find just one hour to do nothing but what you want to do?  This could be reading a magazine, talking a walk, soaking in a tub, or just resting on a lawn chair doing absolutely NOTHING.  Why do we feel somewhat “guilty” when we “waste” time watching an old movie on a rainy Saturday, or curling up with that novel we have been dying to read or going for a bike ride?  Most people neglect to take time for themselves to use it as a ‘de-stress mechanism’, something we all need now and then. Besides enjoying the pastime of your choice, what other factors contribute to good health? Drinking plenty of water, getting proper nutrients through a well rounded diet and having good posture are elements that make up the important factors for a healthy body.  When asked how much water we should drink each day, here is one formula.  “Take your body weight and divide it in half. This halved number is the amount of ounces of water you should drink each day.” Drink water an hour before your meals rather than with it.  When you drink water with meals, it neutralizes the body enzymes that are needed to breakdown your food and pass along the nutrients to the rest of your body.  For young children do not give them so much milk, juices, and water with meals for this reason and that it fills them up.  Then they do not want to eat their food because they are not hungry anymore.  Eating the proper foods, taking vitamins, getting regular physical checkups, practicing good posture, and getting plenty of physical exercise all help in raising the quality of our life.  Most of us enjoy being busy, productive, and active each day, but we have to keep our “machinery” in top shape to accomplish this.  Including some “me time” every day, even if you just start out for an hour, will make such a big difference in your lifestyle that you will be amazed. When the weekend rolls around, try the two hour a day plan and see how great you will feel by the time Monday rolls around!