Finding Time For “Me”…Is It Possible?

Camillia Lee - alone in the treesI cherish time alone. Time to be in the quiet and spaciousness of life. Time to stare out the window and wonder what if questions. Time to hear my breath and place my hand on my heart to feel my internal rhythm. Time to create, read, write down ideas, and drink French press coffee. Time to lie on the floor in my bedroom to connect my spine to the earth while listening to the words of Bob Marley or Tori Amos. Time to root through my closet, create outfits, and put on a personal fashion show. Time to write cards and read cooking magazines. Time to hear the creaky sounds of the house and the squirrels running along the roof. Time to listen to my thoughts and not use my voice or my ears for conversation. Time to reflect on how my outer landscape is aligning with my inner galaxy. Time for me and time to just be.

It’s not often that I am able to carve out this time. With a full house, it is sweet, ever sweeter these days, to hear only my breath and the flipping of the pages of my book. Lately, I have been asking myself….What is created in the spaces in between? If the spaciousness created by being with just me is sparing, how else can I be with myself? How else can I give to myself? Where else can I create this den to hibernate in? I lean into moments of aloneness whether it is driving from where I live to where I work, walking along Main Street to get a coffee, or cooking a meal that warms my heart and belly even while the living room is alive with news headlines and conversation. I’m experimenting with time and space. I am leaning into new ways of being with me.

Since the present undeniably transitions into the past and the future holds shiny allure, it is a practice to be in the spotlight of now. For me, space and silence offer an invitation to melt into the now with ease and grace. However, the hum of life can easily consume this space and silence. To draw myself into the moment and back into my bones, I go to my yoga mat. I surrender myself to a yoga practice offered in a filled room and with a teacher who guides with presence and kindness. I sink into my mat, heavy with relief, need, and commitment. I offer my breath, sweat, and focus to reclaiming myself again and again. And I recommit to myself, all those things that I know to be true within me and all those things that I want in my life….abundance, grounding, security. I recommit to living fully. At the close of my practice, I offer gratitude to this time and space to be with me. I am reminded that I always have the opportunity to turn my gaze inward and make any moment a haven, a time to be with me.

I would love to hear how alone time and spaciousness show up in your life. Where do you find moments of presence and openness? How do you offer yourself care and attention?

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[Editor's note: This is a guest post by Amanda Upton, a life coach, career coach, educator and yoga teacher based out of Brattleboro, Vermont.  Her passion is supporting men and women in creating a life they really want and love.  Along with putting her heart and soul into her work, she dances wherever and whenever she can, swims in lakes, oceans, swimming holes, and pools, practices yoga on and off the mat, and cooks lots of veggies and Mexican food.  Visit her website, rootdowncoaching.com, follower her on Twitter, or like her on Facebook].

Photo credit: Camilia Lee

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Comments

  1. Whenever I need “me” time, I turn to meditation. When I meditate, I am with myself and nobody else; my mind is my only company. I’m a bit of a loner, so I really do cherish the days where I get to spend the entire day alone, being productive and creativity, but these days are rare. Meditation? That’s a daily thing! :D

    • YES!! I love that you have a daily practice of meditation and are so in tune with who you are and what you need to be productive and creative. This self-knowledge is a gift which you are so beautifully embracing! Thank you :-)

  2. Yes, I start each day with ten minutes of relaxing meditation, focusing on my breathing. I am amazed at how clear my mind seems after this simple ten minutes. I also find that walking, running or jogging seems to be a great time for creative thinking. Away from all electronics and technology.

    • It’s amazing how such simple acts can create powerful internal shifts, just as you described. It is absolutely necessary these days that we consciously turn away from electronics and technology and towards movement, fresh air, stillness, breathing – even if it’s just for 5 min. I love that you start each day with 10 minutes of relaxing meditation – what a delicious treat for your heart, body, and soul. Thank you for your comment and, most importantly, thank you for honoring yourself.

  3. I love the sense of community that being at a studio provides, but there is no doubt that my morning solo asanas are really what ground me. I loved what you said Amanda about being in the spotlight of now – I prefer when that spotlight is only on me for my morning practice.

    • Oh Khay I can so relate! I love a solo practice as well where I can flow to my favorite tunes and move just the way my body needs. I often start out practicing yoga and find myself moving beyond my mat to dance and be free – it just feels so good! However, I find it difficult to maintain a steady solo practice but you have inspired me to begin again, to practice at making it steady. The sound of your morning ritual is too juicy to resist! Thank you!

  4. I’m so thrilled I inspired that for you, Amanda! I also wanted to say that I really appreciate your style of writing. I’ve just started blogging myself and am settling into my voice.

    • Khay, Thank you! I love to write and have been working on settling into my voice as well, it’s a practice like anything else. I would love to read your blog, please send me the link if you’d like to amanda@rootdowncoaching. Happy writing! xo

  5. My early morning essentials are tea, 10 minutes meditation (or even just 5 if I’m pushed) and 10 minutes of yoga. This is my minimum “me-time” requirement and essential to get through the day.

    • Ella, what a beautiful morning practice you have created! It is evident, through this practice, that you truly value your whole self and that is inspiring! Thank you!

  6. After a long day of work and spending some time at home with family, how can i find a time for me alone :( often in the night, but then burnt our!

  7. I did not begin to meditate until I was well into my forties. People didn’t do that then! Now 70, meditation has become a most integral part of life and I don’t really know where I would be without it. It gives me peace and strength and somewhere to go to be by myself.

  8. I do light yoga and walk about 45 mins every morning. It is the only thing that keeps me centered and feeling amazing. As I’m a writer, I typically bang out a thousand words (of fiction/poetry) after my walk. But I’m also a content writer, so that entails thousands of words per day. I read on average two hours per day. Underscoring all these activities is a degree of recharge/alone time, since I write in my deck office which overlooks an enormous garden (I live on four acres in the Midwest). I do believe my environment is supportive. I grew up in the city and it was much harder, living on top of people and what have you. If I had to pick: my alone time clear my mind follow my breath activity would be writing.

    • Hi Jackson

      I love your morning routine, it sounds lovely and so nurturing for your body, mind, and heart. Sounds like you have a very sweet routine set up for yourself that promotes clarity as well as creativity for your writing. Thank you for sharing.

      Amanda

  9. I like the core exercises, poses, and muscles and tendons that you work out through yoga. Yoga got me in amazing shape for the summer!

    A friend of mine even helped me find a spot to get my fitness gear and mat for cheap at juliewilcoxmethod.com.

  10. The only way I seem to be able to find ‘me’ time is early in the morning before everyone gets up. I hate getting up early but I’m always glad when I do. Self improvement gurus like Robin Sharma recommend getting up at 5am and getting some time to yourself – I rarely can get up quite that early, but even at 6am I still have a whole hour and a half to read, meditate, do some yoga etc.

    • Hi James,

      I too have found that the early morning is the best time to get “me” time in, however uncomfortable it is to roll out of bed when it’s dark and chilly. I so cherish that quiet time before the hustle and bustle of email, phone, and my to do list. So glad you have found a time of day to fit in some loving care of yourself. Take a moment to extend gratitude toward yourself for the simple fact that you care so deeply about your well-being that you rise as early as you do. Thank you for your note and I hope you have a wonderful day!

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