Time management skills are powerful keys to productivity; and one of the basic elements in optimizing your efficiency and effectiveness is self care.
It can be a challenge, especially when you are very busy, to slow down and take care of yourself. But when you invest in self care, the pay-off is big! (Conversely, NOT putting time and energy toward self care will leave you depleted and, ultimately, unable to follow-through on your priorities.)
Since your time is precious, a key to making the most of your self care time is becoming clear about what you need, at any given moment. This is so very important! And it involves a level of self-knowledge that doesn’t necessarily come easily. That’s because, for many of us, the idea of expressing needs or wants was something we learned to see as selfish.
Nothing could be further from the truth! Genuinely knowing what you need is a foundational skill that you need to thrive. While you may not have it right at your fingertips at this moment, the good news is that it’s a skill we can all learn!
The path to this kind of self-knowledge lies in honest dialogue with yourself. We all have a lot of chatter going on, pretty much all the time. Sifting through that chatter to find the clear voice of your authentic, adult self is what you need to do; and you can do it in stillness. As you practice, you will come to recognize this voice and be able to access it more and more quickly.
Listen to what your inner dialogue reveals and then act on it. The more you respond to your own genuine needs, the more you build self-trust. It’s a give-and-take that will sustain you like a good, solid friendship; and it will carry you wherever you want to go.
So take a moment and ask yourself, “What do I need?” And when the answer comes, be sure to address the need directly, in the best way you can.© Copyright 2012 Paula Eder, Ph.D.