We give children a time-out as a disciplinary measure – to stop them from behaving a certain way that is damaging to themselves or others. For adults, that damaging behavior could simply be the constant stress and work of day-to-day life. For women, in particular, who often give most of their time and energy to others such as their kids, spouse, company, employees or friends, it’s not only healthy but also necessary to take a time-out. That could be as simple as reading a book, getting a massage, or just having an uninterrupted lunch with a friend.
If you’re a stay-at-home mother, you definitely need to take a break from the kids once in a while. Being a mother is the hardest job in the world. You would never expect to do any other job 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year. Even a half hour bubble bath behind a locked bathroom door will benefit you. Maybe you could exchange one babysitting day a week with another mom so you can go shopping or take a yoga class. And sometimes you may need a longer break. Talk to your partner, family or friends for help and arrange a weekend away without the kids.
If you work full-time, it’s important to enter “play” on your “to do” list. Consider play to be anything outside of work and sleep. It could be spending quality time with your family, a hobby, a vacation, a game or just doing nothing. The ideal situation would be to have some play time every day, but if that’s not possible during the week, make a conscious effort to carve out some time on the weekend. This is the reason why many companies have ping pong tables, swimming pools, volley ball courts or meditation rooms. They all allow employees to take a mind break from work.
Whether it’s your job, your kids or both, continuous attention to one area of your life will eventually lead to continuous stress and burn-out. Time-outs allow you to rest your mind from your regular responsibilities, recharge your spirit and return to daily life renewed and bursting with new energy.
Inspiring personal growth, professional success and positive change. Author of The Goddess of Happiness, Vita’s Will and Note to Self: Love (Book & Screenplay). Lover of food, fashion, fitness, funky music, dogs, dancing, cooking, laughter and anything Italian.