‘Time out’ has become rather a buzz phrase recently and yet it’s often difficult to fit into our busy schedule. We have so many things to do that taking time out has somehow become a ‘waste of time’. And yet it’s absolutely essential for so many reasons. To name but a few:
- It gives us space to breathe – metaphorically and quite literally, since we often forget to breathe properly if we’re moving too fast or are too stressed.
- It allows us to take stock of what we’ve accomplished so far, and decide what our next most important task might be.
- It helps us to reconnect to our physical body and emotions, and to get out of our head, where we tend to spend way too much time.
- It allows us to connect to our own intuition or whatever higher power we believe in, creating space for us to pay attention to any flashes of insight or new ideas that may bubble up into our consciousness.
Luckily, time out can be achieved in any length of time, from a moment to an extended break. Here are some ideas to work with:
Find a quiet and safe space (you can even use a public bathroom cubicle), get as comfortable as you can and focus on following your breath for just a couple of minutes. You can count breaths if you like, or just follow the flow. Whenever your mind wanders, gently bring it back to your breath.
Get out and spend time in nature
Chill out or walk in a park or forest, on a beach or even in your own garden.
Do something repetitive that doesn’t require too much from you but which allows your brain to zone out.
Take a long, hot bath or shower
You might even consider lighting some candles (even if it’s daytime) and if you’re bathing, pour in the bubbles and just soak.
Be a tourist
Clear your diary for a day, take a drive somewhere not too far away and see the sights.
Image credit: Matteo Castelli via Flickr