In our very busy lives we have so many goals. We have lists to accomplish this and lists to accomplish that. We have responsibilities to take care of our kids, spouse, parents, animals, co-workers, work projects, home projects—the list goes on. It’s enough to drive anyone to overwhelm. Overwhelm is not a great place to be for many reasons, but one of the biggest downsides to all of your busy-ness is that it takes its toll on your productivity. Although you may think you are getting a lot done when you are rushing around doing all of your “to do” list, you are probably spreading yourself too thin.
Overworked and Stressed Out Hurts Productivity
There is much research that shows when you are tired and overworked, your productivity suffers. You might feel like you can just push through and you will get everything done. And you probably will get everything done. However, you have only a limited capacity of attention and capabilities. When you try to do too much, the amount of energy you have to apply to any one of your activities will be limited. And the quality of what you are doing suffers. The best way to get everything done with great success is to do one thing at a time and make sure that you are replenished when you run out of steam. That’s where pampering comes into play. With all the time and attention you spend on everything else in your life, it is critical that you take care of yourself, treat yourself with kindness and get some pampering.
You Deserve To Take Care Of Yourself
You have more than earned the right to treat yourself like queen or king for the day or even just an hour here and there. Because you are so busy dealing with the outside world and constant obligations to others, you often neglect yourself. Admit it, how often do you think about giving yourself a gift of kindness? How often do you think about treating yourself to something that soothes you and nourishes your soul? Probably not nearly enough. What excuses do you use? “I don’t have enough time” or “I will take care of myself after I complete…insert big project name here.” Or worst of all, “I don’t deserve it.” To that I say, Hogwash! You deserve to be treated like you treat everyone else in your life and you want to be treated by others—with loving kindness and care. If you keep putting off taking care of yourself, you are bound to find yourself in deep exhaustion unable to take care of anything. You know the instructions when you are on an airplane, “Put on your own oxygen mask before helping others.” You must take care of yourself first.
Don’t Wait For Vacation—Get A Little Pampering Everyday
One approach that helps to keep the craziness of life at bay is to try to find time every day when you do something that is pampering. It is usually easier to squeeze in some “me time” everyday instead of taking a whole day off—though a day off is a great idea as well! Self-care doesn’t have to take a lot of time. It can be as simple as polishing your nails or taking a bubble bath—one of my all-time favorite pampering activities. Or perhaps you can schedule a massage or other spa-type activity. Even curling up to read a good book counts as pampering if it is something you rarely give yourself the time to do. Pampering oneself is part of the path to respecting and loving ourselves. And love for others begins with internal caring.
Pampering Means Kindness To Yourself
I looked up the word “pamper” and I love the definition—to treat lavishly, to gratify. Synonyms include spoil, indulge, coddle, mollycoddle, cosset, baby and treat—something that everyone deserves every now and again. And that means you deserve it too! Though each of these words has a slightly different connotation, the essence is clear. Pampering yourself means that you are treating yourself with kindness. What you find pampering might be different from what someone else enjoys, so the first step is to make sure you have a list of pampering activities to choose from. Then put your “time outs” into your schedule. Whether you use an electronic calendar or paper organizer, plan time in your day, week and month for activities that replenish you. Not only will planning help make the pampering actually happen, but seeing the time off on your calendar will be motivating and something to look forward to.
Treat Yourself With Kindness, Then Pass It Along
Kindness to others really does begin with you. When you treat yourself to kindness, you are restocking your inner supply of goodness and well-being. It takes a lot of energy to exist in our fast-paced lives around people who have all of their own goals and worries. When you treat yourself kindly and pamper yourself, you are setting yourself up to be kind to others. So pass it along. Pamper yourself so that you increase your productivity. Pamper yourself so that you treat yourself with kindness. Pamper yourself so that you have the energy and motivation to treat others with kindness. And thus begins the spiral of kindness into the world!