Look After Yourself

Take time to take stock of your family schedule and make time for yourself

By FamilyTime


As parents, we have a tendency to put everyone else's needs before our own, but we also need to take care of ourselves. Make looking after yourself a priority and you will be better prepared to deal with those you love.

Record Family Schedule
For one week, log your schedule in your weekly calendar. You can create a master calendar that has everyone in your household color-coded separately. Try this for a week.

Analyze Your Week
Sit down with your husband or wife and analyze the calendar. Look at your use of time. Make a list of all your responsibilities. Ask your spouse to do the same. Often, the mere act of logging your time creates an awareness that you might not have had.

Ask yourselves whether the activities in your family calendar match your overall goals. Assess whether some activities have run their course. Determine where you might be able to save or cut time.

Take Stock
Take the time to make a list of what you would like to do for yourself. Record the activity, frequency and time it will take to do this activity and rate it from 1 - 5 with 1 being the most important and 5 being the least important.

For example:
Walk 3 - 5 times weekly for 30 minutes - 1
Watch the news 3- 4 times weekly for 30 minutes - 5
Meditate 4 times weekly for 30 minutes - 2

Share this list with your spouse. Go over the master calendar and your list of responsibilities. See what you can eliminate, consolidate, or delegate to help free up your time.

Start Fresh
Start the new week by blocking time in your calendar for your activities. Do this before you record new household activities, events or responsibilities into your calendar.

At the end of the week, analyze how this process worked for you. Maintenance and negotiation are important to help find a schedule that works. Be ruthless in making time for yourself.