Doesn’t it sometimes seem like being busy has become a competition? We compare our schedules with family or friends as though we’re trying to boast about how many commitments we have and how many things we have to do, or how little time we have to relax and have fun.
But when we get so busy that we no longer have time for ourselves, that’s a problem. Free time is important, no matter what you do with it: reading, crafting, watching a favorite TV show, or even just relaxing and doing nothing. Even if you love your work or your classes, or whatever else is taking up a lot of your time, it’s important to have time away from it in order to destress and unwind at the end of the day.
Taking time away from work and other commitments to do something relaxing helps clear and refresh your mind. Not only is this good for your mental health, but you might also be more creative after. Have you ever noticed that when you’re really struggling with a project or assignment, taking time away from it (even to work on something else) and returning to it later often helps you come up with new ideas and solutions? Time away from the challenges of work or class will help you be more energized when you start again later.
Wondering how to do it and make time to step away? Well, it can be hard – we get so involved in so many things that giving something up can lead to a lot of guilty feelings. But try to delegate where you can, or even remind yourself to stop when something is finished. It can be tempting to keep working on a project or assignment to make it “perfect,” but doing so will only take time away from any other commitments you have. If you find yourself less productive because you’re distracted, do what you can to limit those distractions – close the door or turn your phone off.
When you do have time for yourself, to relax or to decompress, take advantage of it! It’s so important for reducing stress and helping you stay positive, so don’t let yourself push it off by trying to get work done or even by making up work so that you still feel busy. Prioritizing time for yourself is essential, so mark it in your planner or calendar if you need to and enjoy the time of destressing and relaxation!