Individual growth is an indispensable first step in the formation of enduring relationship with others. Only when we have found the unique self, will we have a true self to give to another in a deep and a meaningful way. This unique self is achieved when one is able to take time out in the midst of rat race , look within , introspect his/her priorities and also look at the direction where life is leading.
How well do you know yourself? Your strength and weakness? Are you comfortable with change or are you bored with routine. Are you in touch with your feelings of anger, resentment, hurt as well as love and affection? Do you have interest that you can enjoy yourself? Are you able to sit quietly for a few minutes without any gushing thoughts in your mind? OR how familiar does this phrase sound to you that ‘I wish I could just relax on bed with the music on the background and dozing off to sleep as I am trying to finish my favorite novel or I have planning since months to catch my with my friend on lunch, but have been not able to. If so, then it is time for you to take a break or reschedule your activities to some extent or priorities your wanting to be yourself.
In this harsh, inconsistent world where people’s sense of esteem stems from degrees of workaholism, there is an intangible, sinking feeling of emptiness. We need to fill this with a sense of inner quietness. But inner peace and an outer, perfection-obsessed attitude are incompatible companions. And there arises a decision to be made from our part.
When is it time for us to realize that do we give time for ourselves or how can that be done? Look within yourself! Take a moment to think about how you take care of yourself- both physically and emotionally. Do you get time to eat three moderate meals a day, time to do the work which you enjoy the most, Do you exercise each week, and get a check-up once a year? Answering yes to these questions means that you take care of your body. Now think about your emotional well- being. Do you regularly set aside “quiet” time for yourself, meditating, writing, thinking or praying? Do you make time regularly to enjoy nature or other quiet, restful places? Giving time to oneself covers all these aspects both physical and emotional. All these activities can help you recover from life’s stresses.
In the present day scenario, the credit for the lack of time to oneself goes to the advent of technology. Most of us have an addiction for E-mail — to quickly check if there is any message even late at night. This is an “unknown” invite to stress here. In addition to that there are so many channels to watch, various gadgets and games to be played on the net, constant ringing tone of the cell, that we have literally been the slaves of technology. Little do we realize that we need to unplug ourselves and able to relax and enjoy the calmness of our surrounding, until all this stressful life takes a toll on our health.
When we reach home, we need to be cautious not to allow our self to be a slave of technological glitz unless there is something too urgent to attend to. When we avoid the urge, and get on with something more comforting, we will surely feel calm and more family-centered. It helps us to connect with ourselves. It also gives us the room to unwind our self and gives the time to make personal phone calls, may be to go for a quick walk, or window shopping.
We need to do the balancing act in every aspect of our life, if we need to be able to enjoy the company of our self. Most of us have many demands placed on our time and energy. Spouse, children, in laws, social commitments are important and make living worthwhile, but can make finding time for oneself a challenge.
The key point is balancing the time we spend with others as well as the personal time to oneself can help us become happier and more productive. Reaching out to others i.e: sharing with others like your family, co -workers, friends, a nonprofit organization— can give life great meaning and joy. But at the same time reaching outside all the time would leave one exhausted. Living only for oneself would also make us feel lonely and empty. Finding the balance between the two is the key to a rich and contented life. To find our personal balance, we need to look to how we spend our time and energy. We need to write down the main activities each day for a week or two. Then add up the hours spent “for me” and “for others.” One might realize that he/she ought to give more to others, or take more time to oneself. When one is creating balance, it is also important need to decide what is most important to you. Finding balance is a day-by-day matter. If one is more adaptable to change such that will be able to change as ones life circumstances change, caring for oneself and others will make our life healthy and satisfying.
Looking at it from a philosophical point of view, to know oneself or giving priority to oneself, we must love ourself. For it is only when we are filled with love that we can share this gift with the world. Giving time to oneself is also connecting with our inner selves and this is possible only when we peel off all masks. To accept the totality of our being, we must become compassionate towards ourselves. Accepting our negativity is an integral part of the human experience and Striving for authenticity in thought and action is the first mature step in connecting with inner self. There is not a single person in this universe who leads a problem-free life. Yet we encounter people whose lives appear dynamic and joyous. What sets them apart? The answer: they do not allow themselves to be immobilized by little things. They respond to problems with ease, change things that can be changed and accept those that can’t. In simpler words they give thought or priority to their inner self.
Contemporary wisdom would have us believe that packing each day with things that need to be done is the secret of success. But life isn’t all about getting things done as much as it is about enjoying each step along the way. Keeping this in mind, if we give priority to our self, in the process of achieving our goal, the journey will indeed be an enjoyable one.