Heather Marshall on June 14th, 2010

I’m sitting here in my new home while my precious baby boy is napping, surrounded by piles of folded laundry, unsorted mail, and half unpacked boxes… writing a blog post.  Does this seem like I’ve got my priorities wrong? On the contrary, my friend! I’m making time for ME!

Last month when I sat down to write my latest blog post (the first in sooo long), I realized that I had been missing out on something all this time! It felt sooo good to get back into writing, answering emails, reading blog comments… I’d been missing out on ME time!

So much of what we do as wives and mothers centers around others. We cook, clean, care for, and spend time with our husbands & children. We run errands, go to church, and attend family BBQ’s. Even when we snuggle up with our hubbies to watch a movie, it’s with another person.

What many of us miss out on is time spent doing something for yourself.  Perhaps it’s reading a good book. Maybe it’s taking a class. It could be a hobby, like crocheting or scrapbooking. Perhaps it’s even exercise! For me, well… I’d like to do ALL of those things but… blogging is definitely on the list for me!

I know what you may be thinking… in fact, I’m willing to bet that at least one of these objections are yours:

  • “I don’t have TIME to have me-time - I’m too busy!”
  • “I feel selfish leaving my husband with the kids so I can do what I want.”
  • “There’s too much work to get done around here for me to sit around doing nothing.”

Well, about a year and a half ago, I wrote about this very topic… & I’d like to repost part of it for you to read. It’s a great reminder of WHY this is so important!

When’s the last time you allowed yourself a break from housework, the kids, or (gasp) even your husband? Are you feeling worn out, fatigued, easily irritated? You may need to allow yourself some time for self-care!!

Not sure what to do? Here are some ideas:

  • Join a ladies’ Bible study.
  • Schedule a weekly or monthly girls’ night with other women from your church, Bible study, etc.
  • Get a manicure, pedicure, or massage.
  • Go out for coffee or shopping (either on your own or with friends, whichever your preference is).
  • Join a gym, especially one that offers aerobics classes!

Short on time, money, or even friends to go somewhere with?  Here are a few other ideas…

  • Go for a walk.
  • Curl up on the couch with a cup of tea and a good book (either after the kids are in bed, or send them outside with Dad!)
  • Pick up the phone & call your mom, sister, or best girlfriend to chat.

Nervous about leaving your hubby alone with the kids? (Or even by himself?) No worries, he’ll be fine! Growing up, I loved the nights my dad was in charge - nobody had to eat their veggies!! :) Let your husband make his own fun memories with your kids, or if there are no kids involved, give him a night to be by himself (I’m sure he’ll find a night of video games or competition-free TV watching pleasurable).

Oh, & if he complains…. just let him know that you’ll miss him…. but it’ll be worth it for BOTH of you to have that time apart!

Admittedly, self-care was a hard concept for me to grasp during the first year of our marriage… I felt like Jason and I should do everything together… but then I found myself missing out on my female friendships!  Also, I was often irritable and burnt out… looking back, I think I can attribute a lot of that to a lack of self-care.

It took a lot for me to realize that being a striving wife does NOT mean doing everything for my husband and nothing for me. And, it took a lot to realize that doing something for me does NOT mean I’m selfish!

So, do you agree that it’s important? What do YOU do for “Me-Time”? Or, what would you WANT to do? I’d love to hear your thoughts, comments, & ideas!

Keep on Striving,

Heather :)


Related posts:

  1. Self-Care: Selfish or Striving?
  2. The Importance of the Holy Spirit
  3. Tried & True Keys to Being Productive
  4. What Makes a Good Wife - Part 2
  5. A Vow to Cherish

10 Responses to “Taking Time for ME Time”

  1. omg! i so neeeded this! i absolutely agree! I fail to ever give myself \me\ time! even after the kids are in bed or napping i always feel like i should be cleaning or folding laundry or whatever! i rarely spend time on just me! i really need to do that so im not so burnt out! love your blogs!!

  2. Once again, a great ((and much needed)) reminder! I can totally relate to feeling burned out, cranky, etc. when I haven’t made ‘me time’ a priority-and the opposite results in my attitude when I do make a conscious effort to incorporate ‘me time’ into my schedule of priorities. For me, I’ve found that spending consistent quiet moments with Jesus, and dear girlfriends are HUGE blessings for me. Also, exercising and crafts are great stress relievers too. My hubby can always notice when I’m ‘due’ for some ‘me time’ and is also quite thankful for when I take it. ;)

  3. I have always been a working wife and mother (27 years). I’ve never felt like i had the time to give to myself. I ended up tired and negative all the time. In February of this year i chose to stop working and focus on being a wife and Mom outside the workforce. My kids are all grown but there are plenty of times Mom is needed during a typical day. My ‘me time’ consists of walking in the country and my classes here at home. I also just started to learn to sew and i am loving being in my special room with my computer and books and music and sewing machine.
    I have an awsome husband who supports me in everything i put my heart into. I am very blessed indeed! So, don’t wait like i did until you get cranky and tired and your kids are grown til you take care of your self. Love you all, Wendy

  4. Wendy, WOW, thank you so much for your input and advice! As a young wife and mother it’s so great to hear from those who have “been there”… I hope everyone who reads this will heed YOUR words of wisdom & take time NOW for some “Me-Time”.

    Chelsea, you can do it, girl! :)

    Jess, I didn’t even think of “Me-Time” as being time spent with Jesus, but that DEFINITELY counts! lol It’s funny how we think that we need to do everything in order for our husbands to be happy… but so often it’s when we take care of ourselves that we end up making them happier (because WE are so much happier)!

    Keep these comments coming, & keep on striving!

    Heather :)

  5. For the longest time, I would definitely feel guilty for taking any time for myself. I always felt I had to be doing my work (especially if my husband was working)and, yes, I would get cranky and irritable. Now I take time out for reading, gardening, quilting, cooking - all things that I enjoy and I do for myself and for others. And I think outlook is important. I used to garden until it hurt. Now I try to do a little gardening, and spend a little time enjoying the garden. I get excited seeing the new flowers that come up that I forgot I planted. And today I was in the garden and saw a large frog - one I had never seen before. It was colorful and just sitting on a rock. And I harvested my first two blueberries from a bush that I planted last year. I ate one and saved one for my husband to taste. They were yummy. And now, instead of stressing over all the weeds that need pulling, I just pull some and the rest will have to wait. But more importantly, I am enjoying my garden - taking that time I need for myself. Thanks, Heather, you always write such thought provoking material.

  6. I get me time.. but i always worry about RJ or if i go out i call a lot to make sure he is okay. Sometimes i feel like i don’t get a break and have me time. the only me time i get is at night when he is sleeping and by that point i am exhausted and i just go to bed. like about a month ago i went out with friends for the day and it helped, and i went out with friends for a night and that helped but its hard for me to have those times sometimes because i am a single mom and i dont want people to think that i dont want to take care of RJ and i just want to go out and have fun. well this was a helpful post and i can relate to it. i love you heather give the little guy a kiss for me.

  7. I finally get the “me time” concept”. I was very independent before I met my husband so I did what I wanted when I wanted. Now I realized I given all that up without even knowing I did it. I have no real girlfriends to speak of, my family has moved away, and I felt compelled to stay home if he is home. Dont know why. He gets up and leaves all the time to work, play, or just hang with the guys. I need to do some real soul searching to reconnect or reinvent myself. I feel everything about myself including mentally, emotional, physically, and spiritually is dull. Looking forward to hear what you think.

  8. I completely agree. When my daughter was first born my husband would watch her for an hour every night so I could shower, watch tv, get on the internet…whatever. Now my daughter is 10 weeks old and he is much more comfortable watching her longer. On the weekends he will sometimes take her a whole day and visit his family so I can nap or whatever. During the week I have her 24/7, so it’s nice to have a break.
    For me \me time\ doesn’t have to be pampering. I enjoy cleaning, organizing, and even running errands.
    On the other end it is important for a husband and wife to have time together too. My mom takes our daughter ever Thurs so we can have a date night. It’s great for my daughter to have grandma time and my mom loves it as well.

    For the single mom who posted something about feeling guilty, don’t. I am sure your child enjoys spending time with someone else too once in a while. Maybe your mom or family member can work out a standing with you, even if it’s everyother week, so you can get some personal time.

  9. So glad to see you back blogging!

    I have recently started back up myself, after a looonnnngggg hiatus. (What is it about those baby boys of ours that take up all our time? hee.)

    I love all the comments everyone has written, and just want to say AMEN.

    I’ve discovered that ‘me time’ is vital to my emotional health, my marriage AND my relationship with Levi (even as little as he is). As hard as it is to ignore and rebuke the feelings of guilt when I do leave him with Matt, it is so refreshing and I come back feeling more alive and like myself (not that I’m unhappy being at home with Levi, but I think you know what I mean).

    Love,
    Erin

  10. I’m amazed at how many comments are coming from young moms with little babies… who have already learned how important time for yourself is! I know that in the very beginning, my only “me-time” was my shower (& Courtney, I remember you saying that too right after RJ was born)… but thank God for nap times, husbands, and parents who watch our kids while we get a break! You ladies are awesome… keep on striving!

    Kristina, wow you sound like me in my first year of marriage! I always felt guilty leaving if my husband was at home! You need to just DO it! Find a women’s Bible Study or small group & get out of the house at least once a month (for now) for some girl time. You’ll be amazed at how refreshing that one night can be! If your church or area doesn’t offer a women’s group, then find someone (even an older woman) in your church who would like to go to lunch with you. In these ways, you’ll be forming friendships as well as getting some time for yourself! Let me know if there’s anything I can do for you… email me anytime at heather[at]thestrivingwife[dot]com. I hope things go well for you!

    Keep on Striving,

    Heather :)

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