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Women's Health

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A Woman's Guide to 'Me' Time

How to find the time for yourself and why it matters.
By
WebMD Feature
Reviewed by Dan Brennan, MD

Women today have been told we have it all -- careers, families, kids, community involvement, and relationships. But all too often, having it all leaves us with no time or strength left for ourselves.

Recent research has shown that women today are less happy than they have been over the past 40 years. There are many theories about why, but lack of free time can be a major reason.

Recommended Related to Women

Always Late? Find Out Why

By Keith Ablow, M.D.It’s high time to figure out what’s making you perpetually behind. Here, strategies to help you get out of the lateness rut. Some years ago when I was chief resident in psychiatry at the New England Medical Center, I decided it was finally time to enter therapy myself. I was dating the woman who would later become my wife and I wanted to explore why I hadn’t yet committed to her. So I booked an appointment with a noted psychiatrist, about 10 miles from my home, and left...

Read the Always Late? Find Out Why article > >

"There's a tremendous amount of stress and pressure put on women: being parents, being daughters, mothers, wives, professionals. All of these roles combined leave many of us not taking adequate care of ourselves -- which is what sustains us and gives us the energy to take care of all these other responsibilities that we have," says Randy Kamen Gredinger, a Wayland, MA, psychologist and life coach specializing in women's issues.

Whether you're wrangling toddlers, sleeplessly waiting for your teen to come home, caring for your aging parents -- or all of the above -- every woman needs an occasional break for sanity's sake. This means taking time each day to do something for yourself.

But how can you make it happen?

Make Yourself a Priority

First, realize how important it is.

"I've been talking to women about this for years, and we seem to have trouble even feeling like we're worthy of being put on our own list of priorities," says Amy Tiemann, author of Mojo Mom: Nurturing Your Self While Raising a Family and founder of Mojomom.com.

"If you can't do it because you feel like you deserve it, look at it this way: You are a first responder. An emergency can come up at any time, and you should be as well rested and restored as you'd want your ER doc or EMT to be," Tiemann says. "And besides, taking care of yourself will make you a better parent and partner. You'll be more fun to be around and more responsive to your family."

OK, so you're convinced. It's time to take time for you. Now, when can you fit it in? Don't wait for the time to just magically appear. It won't.

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