It’s Sunday and I’m back in Ventura for the weekend spending time with Jason. I committed to coming up here once a month to nourish our relationship. It can be challenging to set aside a weekend a month with everything that goes on living a full life. When I carve out the time to get away from the hustle and bustle of LA to have focused time with my sweetheart I am always grateful I did.
I love my life and work so much it can be easy to get swept away researching for a client, going to yoga trainings, brainstorming for the blog, developing a yummy new recipe. Before I know it the weekend is here and I’m booked solid with hikes, farmers market trips, yoga classes, client meetings, dinners, meditation groups, and I’m like wait how did that happen? I was supposed to be relaxing!
The blessing and curse of living a life that you love is making sure to take time for yourself. As of this year I am only working a few weekends per month. I made this decision because I wanted to be able to have some Saturdays with Jason and there are activities I like to do that are only available on weekends, especially certain Farmers Markets. Living in LA we have traffic to contend with as well and driving out to the beach can be much less stressful on a weekend morning.
To help us make the most out of our weekends I came up with a few, simple suggestions:
1. Schedule some down time.
In an ideal world this is non negotiable but in the real world it’s not always an option. Sometimes we are on a deadline for a project, we have to take a work trip, or there are engagements we have to keep. All of that is totally fine. When you have a ton on your plate, that down time is even more important. Setting aside even 30 minutes for yourself to take a quick walk, journal, a nap, or do light stretching. These are great ways to take care of yourself over the weekend.
2. Move your body.
Take a hike. Ride your bicycle. Hit your favorite yoga class. Have an adventure at the driving range. Get your body moving in a way that feels good. I like to start my Saturday with a gentle yoga practice and go for a hike. Today we road bikes along the coast. Don’t spend a lot of time worrying if it’s the best or healthiest activity – just move and enjoy connecting to yourself.
3. Take a break from email.
This is huge. Just recently I have stopped answering work emails on the weekend unless it is an emergency. This simple break has been life changing. I didn’t realize how much being on constant email drained my energy and made me unhappy. Being available 24/7 is no longer of interest to me and I had to get over the fear that I would make people upset if I didn’t respond right away. Lots of personal growth in this area ;)
4. Try something new.
Instead of waiting until your next vacation, once in a while stretch yourself and try something new. Get a list going of activities you are interested in. Check out an exhibition at a museum, go to a park you have never been to, explore a neighborhood you have been wanting to see. Try to schedule one activity every month or so to invite some inspiration into your life.
5. Make a plan for the upcoming week.
During a quiet time take a few moments to look over the week ahead. See where you can mark off time for yourself and set little goals you want to accomplish during the week. When you make your life and dreams a priority by scheduling your week accordingly it’s much easier to stay accountable.
I like living a vibrant life and connecting to many ideas and people. I also know that I have a tendency to overwork, it’s just my nature. Having that awareness about myself helps guide my choices during the week so when the weekend rolls around I can be sure I am getting the most out of it and taking care of myself in the process.
PS I took these photos in Santa Barbara – aren’t they amazing?!