When was the last time you spent time alone doing something you love to do?
For years, I’ve dreamed of taking a trip all by myself and filling my days with things I’ve always wanted to do, yet I continued to put it off year after year because, like you, I have real-life responsibilities. Taking time for myself felt more like a luxury than a necessity, and I couldn’t justify the time or the money.
Then, one day I bit the bullet and booked the trip! I realized in order to care for others, I also had to take care of myself.
Last year, I started a new tradition with my college roommates, to go on an annual girls’ trip to San Diego, which is made possible through my parents’ generosity in letting us stay at their place in Mission Beach, San Diego.
This year I decided to go a few days early to have my dream alone trip. Even though I am a single mom, I’m never really alone, because my daughter is my little shadow who goes wherever I go. I was nervous about staying three nights by myself, but as soon as I breathed the ocean air and took in the breath-taking view, all my fears melted away.
I can’t begin to tell you what this trip did for my physical, mental, and emotional health.
During my time in San Diego, I tried new things like aerial yoga and paddleboard yoga. I met new friends. I danced around the house while Alexa played new music by Taylor Swift! I recorded myself singing karaoke songs on my phone, which I sent to my family to let Ellie listen to before bed.
I tried new foods (vegan sushi), I rode my bike and went on walks while listening to books on audible (Boss Up! by Lindsay Teague Moreno), I wrote in my journal while dolphins showed off outside my bedroom door, I read passages in the Bible and talked to God while singing along to the Bethel Pandora station.
Being free to play and explore did something inside of me. It melted away the stress my body was holding onto, and it relaxed me in a way that filled my spirit with so much hope and excitement for the future.
By the time my friends arrived, I felt like a new woman! Just a few days of being alone and taking time to do the things I loved renewed my energy and excitement to keep going.
As the trip came to a close, I asked myself how can I bring the feeling of San Diego back to Texas, and the answer for me was to find pockets of time during the week to be alone doing something I enjoy. I had to give myself permission and the gift of consecrating that time for something that refills my cup, not for anyone else but me.
It’s so easy to pack out my schedule with lists of things to do for others, and I noticed I’m a happier and healthier version of myself when I don’t neglect my dreams, needs, and desires. When I am filled up, I’m more energized and present for others.
I get that booking a trip right now might not be the right move for you at this point, so my encouragement is to carve out windows of time in your week, start small if you need to— 5, 10, 15 minutes or more and dedicate that time to doing something you love. I promise it will be time well spent!
If you get the chance and are willing to share, I’d like to know what you did or plan to do in your “me time”!
As always, I’m so grateful you spent your valuable time with me today. Love and Blessings.