When was your last day off? Not just a day off from your Most Official Job, but a day off from all responsibilities outside of yourself and your closest family—a day where no phones ring, no emails are replied to, and no meetings are scheduled. Can you even remember it?
In today’s world, many people can’t recall their last total day off, and the desire to have one is increasing all the time. While we love our internet, phones, and social media, all of this connection tends to leave us feeling surprisingly drained. In fact, many people come to counseling in Highlands Ranch for couples therapy asking “how can we find more time for our relationship?” The answer: take time for yourself.
Alone Time Is a Need
When people are asked to list their needs, they usually start with survival needs—food, water, shelter. If asked to continue further, many add “love” or “socialization.” These answers are 100% correct! However, there is another need that many people overlook, and that is the need to be alone. When we are alone, we have time to process our thoughts, to relax, to get back into touch with our own bodies. Many people use alone time for self-care, such as taking a long bath, a relaxing nap, or visiting the spa. These things will not only help you feel better, but to be a better parent, partner, or friend.
Silence is A Valuable Resource
One thing that many couples therapists in Littleton will recommend is to shut off the phone! Whether you are shutting off just your phone to enjoy your day off, or bringing the whole family with you on an interruption-free day, the benefits are priceless. Studies show that most people are distracted multiple times per hour, taking 5-10 minutes to get back on track—and the same is true for distractions from those special times with your family and friends. Put those distractions on “silent” for a day or two and remember what it’s really like to have a whole conversation, or to watch the sunset without an electronic “ding.” Your stress levels will thank you!
Less Stress = Happier Relationships
One of the benefits of a dedicated day off is that you reduce your stress level. Just like a day off of your exercise routine can let your body rest before a big race, a day off from responsibility lets you come back revived and restored—and these effects will spread throughout your life. You may find yourself feeling less snappy, less irritable, more energized, and more interested in what your loved ones have to say.
This isn’t a productivity blog, but psychologists in Colorado know how to get things done. When you dedicate a day off for yourself, you make your time more valuable—to you, and to others. You can set boundaries on your time, ensuring that you use it effectively, and that it is respected.
Need help setting boundaries or managing your time effectively to focus on what matters most to you? Consult with Dr. Lazarus or seek couples counseling in Highlands Ranch to learn effective skills.