10 Ways I Make Time for Me

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We live in a very self-centered society and I am guilty of being extremely self-centered – something I’m not proud of. However, I think sometimes it’s essential to make time for yourself and the things you enjoy.

Top Ten Tuesday at Many Little Blessings

This can be especially true for homeschooling moms because we invest so much of ourselves into our kids. I think that’s as it should be, but, as I’ve mentioned before, I don’t want to wake up one day after my kids have left the nest and find that I’ve invested so much of myself into them that there is nothing left of me – that I haven’t maintained my own interests or those shared with my husband.

So, with that in mind, I try to make sure that I make time to invest in my interests – and, if those interests happen to be things that we can enjoy as a family or as some one-on-one time with a particular child, all the better. Here are ten of my favorites:

1) Running. Having gone from morbidly obese to only slightly overweight, running is something I have to do for both my mental and physical health. I feel so much better after I run. I make sure that I make time to run at least two or three days a week and compete in races as often as possible during the spring and fall (and sometimes during the summer and winter, too).

run

2) Biking. Summer before last, I took up biking again and I love it! My husband and I go as often as possible and drag the kids with us as much as we can. Unfortunately, they don’t like riding as far as we do, so we try to divide our time between slower, shorter family rides and our preferred longer, faster outings.

Wouldn’t you know that as soon as I decided I liked riding and now that Megan can keep up, Josh has decided he doesn’t like to ride as much? Doesn’t it figure? A couple of years ago, he and Brian were going all the time and I was sitting at home with the girls since Megan couldn’t keep up and Brianna doesn’t particularly enjoy riding.

I’ve been trying bribery. {grin}

3) Reading. I’ve always been an avid reader. I love to lose myself in a good historical fiction romance. Just this weekend, I woke up earlier than I wanted to on Saturday (stupid neighbor’s dog!) and spent a few hours lying in bed reading.

4) Drawing. I haven’t been spending as much time drawing as I was there for awhile (tell me I’m not the only one whose hobbies tend to go in fits and spurts), but I do still enjoy it. I need to make time for drawing on a more regular basis.

cat drawing

5) Blogging. Obviously I love blogging. I’ve dreamed of being a writer since I was a kid, so this is a huge creative outlet for me.

6) Photography. It’s been almost two years since I got my fancy-schmancy camera and I still have a lot to learn, but I do enjoy photography. One thing I really want to do is combine my love of biking with my love of photography. I keep thinking that I want to sling my (small) camera bag over my shoulder one of these days when we go riding.

Lock

I’m not sure how Brian would feel about stopping to wait on me continually, but I’ve thought about how much fun it would be to photograph some of the sights we see when we’re riding. Just the other day, a deer crossed right in front of Brian’s bike – as in, a few seconds difference and they’d have collided.

In addition to deer, we see horses nearly every week and there’s the occasional turkey, snake, or turtle. Photography and biking could be fun hobbies to combine.

7) Mom’s Night Out. I try to meet friends for dinner at least once every two or three months or so. It’s good to just get out enjoy some girl talk for a few hours – especially with good Christian friends who will turn your focus back on Christ when you need it.

8) Mom’s Lunch In. Brian is off every other Monday and lately he’s been taking the kids and going to meet his parents for lunch – and leaving me at home alone! I love it!

I love my family and I love spending time with my kids, but, I’m not going to lie, a couple of hours having the house all to myself for a couple of hours a couple of times month is nice.

I usually do the same thing I would do if they were here – blog a bit, email friends, read – but I do it in peace and quiet with no interruptions.

9) Words with Friends. Hey, saying it’s a fun way of making time for myself sounds better than saying I’m addicted. Actually, a friend of mine insists that it’s good for us because it makes us think and keeps our minds active. Sounds good to me!

10) Crochet. This is another one I haven’t made quite as much time for since I mastered acquired a basic ability to complete the basic stitches. I enjoy it, though, and I’ve got lots of things I want to make saved on my Pintrest crochet board.

So, what about you? What are some ways you enjoy making time for yourself and your interests?

This post is linked to Top Ten Tuesday.

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22 Comments

  1. I enjoy taking a bath in the evening while my husband watches the kids.  I am working on my Masters degree and I homeschool my 7 year old.  On top of that I have a 2 and 3 year old and babysit a friends 2 year old.  Needless to say "me" time is probably mostly writing my papers for school.  I do try to workout every morning.  I feel better after I do.  Last week my husband and I bought bikes.  I am a little scared, I haven't been on a bike for probably 15 years.  We are going to get a bike trailer this week for the little ones and start family bike rides.  Wish me luck!!

  2. Once a week I take off to a local coffee shop and have a Knit Night with a bunch of other knitters in my area.  We sit around, knit and talk for a couple of hours and I always come home ready for the week ahead.  There's something about that time away that gives me the space I need to feel like I'm actually GIVING to my family instead of my family TAKING from me.  Does that make sense?

  3. You are not the only one whose hobbies go in fits and spurts!  I need to work out more, so I'm just now starting to get back into dancing.  I loved it when I was little, now I'm doing those dance exercise videos and I am using muscles I forgot I had…

    The kids are now interested in learning all the dance stretches, so they'll get a mini workout too!  Other than dancing, I just try to get up early to read/write/pray.  I am currently trying to make friends in our 'new' town.  We've lived here for almost two years. I'm just a homebody.

  4. No wonder I like you so much! I'm another avid reader who needs creativity. (And I love Words w Friends!) But you do a much better job of 1) incorporating creativity into your life and b) incorporating physical activity in your life! I really need to get better at that last one.

    But I also have to remind myself not to compare. I am doing the best I can, right now, with the life I've been given. 

  5. I love many of the same things: running, reading, blogging, photography, the house to myself! I haven't tried words-with-friends, afraid I'll become addicted 😉

  6. Great list!  I've recently started running, and love reading as well.  I also learned how to ride a motorcycle last year, that's one of my husband's big passions and something we do together now, and I have a few geeky habits I indulge on a weekly basis as well 🙂  Overall, making time for myself keeps me from feeling overwhelmed by the whole SAHM/homeschooling thing!

  7. Yes, that makes perfect sense to me — it puts you in a better place, mentally, to serve your family. This weekend, my husband and I took off riding Sunday afternoon, after only a short visit with extended family — including a brother I hadn't seen in quite a while — because I knew that if I didn't get some physical activity, sunshine, and time alone with my husband, it was *not* going to be a good Monday. It was exactly what I needed and I was able to be much more pleasant and productive when Monday rolled around.

    Knit Night sounds like so much fun, btw!

  8. Good luck! It had been nearly 20 years since I'd been on a bike when we took riding back up. I was nervous at first, but they use that expression "it's just like riding a bike" for a reason — you really don't forget. Have fun!

  9. I have very little "me" time, so I combine reading and my workout.  I love to bike, but I don't have the time to ride outside during the daylight.  Most of my free time comes when my daughter has gone to bed, even before we started homeschooling it was the same.  I do my spin class at home and read on my Nook while I workout, it also keeps my mind too busy to think about how tired I might be 🙂
    BTW, I love historical romances too.  It's my not-so-secret guilty secret.  

    I love to cross stitch, but lately just can't find time to do it.  That's not something I can do while working out.

  10. I have two children under 4 and another due to arrive in a few weeks, so whenever I get free time right now, I sleep. Or read. Or fall asleep reading.  But when I'm not pregnant and crazy tired, I love to hike in the woods or enjoy a mug of coffee with a friend at Panera. One day! 🙂

  11. I enjoy card making so I look for reasons to give cards to people, especially at church.  I also like to make the tied fleece blankets for children.  I look for every outlet there.  Missionary's, pregnancy centers, blog friends having babies and the list goes on.

    Johnna

  12. It's true, we all need some time for ourselves and these are some great ways to take care of ourselves at the same time. I love hanging with my friends, taking hikes with my hunnie and my dog, and blogging of course!  Thanks for sharing.  

  13. My husband works a lot right now, so Mon-Fri, almost all of the childcare falls to me. So I make time for myself by having a college student that I adore come watch my kids for a few hours, 3-4 times a month. Getting out by myself (even if it's just to run errands to to head to my library and work on my blog) has been a lifesaver for me! 

    Refreshed moms are better moms! 🙂 I enjoyed your list. 

    Found you through Top 10, btw!

  14. I've been checking out some homeschool blogs lately and it's so lovely to find yours – it's great. We homeschooled ours in the UK which led me to write 'Learning Without School' and a retrospective blog letting people know how it all works out! (https://rossmountney.wordpress.com)
      But I wanted to comment as your post here is what I always maintained – that successful home education is as much about managing ourselves and our own space as it is about educating the kids! Blessings on your journey. x

  15. Thanks, Erica! I'm glad you found me. I think that's a great idea. I know how hard even temporary "only parent" status can feel, so I agree that it's important to have some time to get away for just a little while and recharge.

  16. I'm a week late for this post — but I LOVE it!

    I'm really missing running these days — I'm surprised at how much. It helps me balance my thoughts, and 'run all my meanness' out!

    Great list!

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