One should, one must, one could - in our fast-moving, complex and dynamic world, there are all kinds of expectations, goals and challenges.
The wheel turns, it turns faster and faster - especially in professional life. How to get things into balance again?
Managers in particular report coming under increasing pressure and working more and more intensively. The PsyGeMa study of the SRH University of Applied Sciences in Heidelberg / Germany assesses the high intensity of work in connection with a scope of activity that is experienced as low as a considerable risk for mental health.
The pandemic has intensified this - in a study by the Economic Forum for Managers in Austria, 3 out of 4 managers report being challenged more than before. More than 50% say that they are mentally or physically stressed as a result, every 6th person speaks of being very stressed. With about 500,000 managers in Austria alone, the dimensions can be quickly illustrated!
Ways and resources are needed to reduce emotional exhaustion and improve (mental) health.
I know the tension described above well from my 20 years in international companies.
You work, you perform, you consider the needs of other people.
At the same time, it is easy to forget about oneself.
Me-time means leaving well-trodden paths and consciously taking time for yourself.
Some people find it difficult to suddenly spend time with themselves - they then quickly end up on social media channels or other electronic channels - unfortunately this does not have much effect.
The art is to organise this time in such a way that it enriches and creates resources - it directly addresses one's own needs and interests. Exactly what it is all about - to spend one's own valuable time well.
There are various ways to use these phases for myself - reading, learning an instrument or a language, thinking, doing sports or simply doing nothing.
It is important to start with your own needs.
It may well be that these are not so clear at first or are still overlaid by routines - dealing with them is already an excellent possibility in me-time.
I regularly experience taking a step back and dealing with my own issues as a valuable component of me-time.
Reflecting on one's own goals, priorities, actions or emotions is usually not possible in daily routines, but it is central to mental health.
How am I really doing? Is something irritating me? Am I deluding myself? How full am I in what I do with my time? What would I like to spend more time on, what less? What prevents me from doing so?
These are possible questions for reflection time and help to get to the bottom of things, to get to the essence.
Sometimes it is easier to dive into fundamental questions not alone, but with a discussion partner - coaching can create additional added value here. Focusing on the respective question, going into depth by asking again and empathic support allow to develop even more perspectives. In addition to professional training, experience, a feeling for the respective counterpart and ideally a similar professional context are decisive.
Taking the step out of the same old routines, out of the fast-moving hamster wheel, has a number of effects.
A side effect of (professional) overload is feeling yourself less, in particular what happens emotionally. Me-time helps to notice irritations better and to listen to oneself more consciously. This sharpens perception - which in turn has a positive effect on the job.
Our brain is geared towards efficiency. Our routines lead to the creation of "neuronal highways", so to speak - thus we complete regular tasks very quickly. The side effect: less used connections in the brain are "thinned out" and replaced in the medium term. Dealing with other topics leads to the creation of new connections in the brain. This has a positive effect on our creativity and ability to solve unfamiliar problems.
I am not the only one who has experienced that a small but regular dose of me-time brings more clarity into one's life. The conscious use of one's own time often causes one to use the rest of one's time differently. In particular, clarifying one's own needs and goals plays an important role here.
It is advisable to consume me-time regularly and in small chunks - a few hours a week rather than 2 weeks at a time during the year. This also helps to actively experience this state, experiment with it and learn to appreciate it.
My personal goal for 2022 is to plan and implement 4 hours of me-time per week during regular working hours - so far this is working very well!
Me-time is sometimes associated with various promises - we will become smarter, better, healthier, ... However, it is not about self-optimisation, but about taking the step out of the other routines.
That alone is an important decision - to take time for yourself and let it work. This will create positive aspects that perhaps cannot be planned exactly.
Me-time is about what many now see as the most precious commodity - one's own time. This means taking a step and using one's own time purposefully and consciously - for whatever is appropriate at the moment.
Time for me also means the opportunity to reflect on one's own situation, context, goals and priorities. Coaching is very well suited to accompany and support you - use this potential, it works!
If you are in the mood Me-Time - consider Coaching and read more on it on this website!