Editor’s Note: For the month of August (2017) I partnered with my friend, La’Vista Jones, for a weekly happy half hour where we discussed the importance and the benefits of self care. We had intended for the culmination of those weekly chats to be a self care workshop in the month of September (2017). I made the difficult decision to cancel that event, but I thought this was still an important topic. We aren’t hosting the event but that doesn’t mean you can’t still make a plan to start loving the life you have right now. Keep reading below for La’Vista’s suggestions on creating a happy plan for your life!
I recently attended a women’s conference, and one of the table discussion topics was needing to have a better theology of fun (code for self-care). The mini discussions that I had the privilege to over hear were so interesting – while the women at my table unanimously agreed that engaging in fun was essential to their overall self-care, they each had trouble identifying the unique things that they enjoyed doing for fun.
Did this surprise me? Not at all. In my experience with working with women and in living my own life, I’ve observed that it can be very easy to forget to make time for the little things that make you … you. For example, if you don’t purposely make time on your schedule to enjoy a walk in the park alone with just your thoughts and maybe your journal, that essential self-care time can easily be replaced with co-hosting game night at your boyfriend’s apartment. Don’t get me wrong, you might really enjoy game night, but filling your schedule with other people’s priorities doesn’t leave much or any time for you to be your own priority.
So let’s get back to the basics of you! Let’s reconnect with those things that are fun to you – those things that make you happy and recharge your batteries.
How to Create A Happy Plan
Let’s start with your calendar. If you’re anything like me, you use some form of a calendar either a paper / planner version or perhaps an electronic calendar on your phone to organize all of your appointments and activities in one place. Take a look at your calendar and carve out 2 to 4 blocks of time over the next 30-days that you will utilize for Happy Time or me time. Be mindful to prioritize this time just like to you would any other important activity on your calendar.
Now work on identifying the things that you really enjoy doing. Think back to activities that brought you happiness as a child, as a teenager or even as a young adult – these memories will serve as the foundation of the activities you should put on your list to enjoy during your scheduled Happy Time. Once you come up with your list of things to do, assign one to each of the time blocks already on your calendar.
Go enjoy some happiness! When your scheduled Happy Time pops up on your calendar, make sure to fully enjoy the time you’ve carved out of your schedule for YOU by actually doing the activities that you identified. Try to minimize any distractions and be present in those moments.
At the end of the 30-days set aside time to do some introspection and be thoughtful about how those activities made you feel and about any hurdles or excuses that came up that may have prevented you from making the most of your Happy Time. This part of working your Happy Plan will allow you to make any needed adjustments as you plan out your next 30-days of on-purpose happiness. This part may also bring light to you needing to seek some additional support, as you push forward towards the transformation of making yourself a priority.
As a reminder, making time for yourself, including having FUN, isn’t selfish – it is a necessity. You cannot serve or take care of others well, if you don’t take care of yourself first.
To Happy Living!
La’Vista Jones is a Certified Life Coach and enjoys working with women and women entrepreneurs through 31 Marketplace. As a Coach, La’Vista gets to combine her passions for excellence, goal digging, encouragement, creativity and extreme self-care to partner with other women to fulfill their vision, personal transformation and goals. She is a native of Ohio, but currently resides in Gilbert, Arizona with her college sweetheart Husband, their son and two pups.
To connect with La’Vista online visit: www.lavistajones.com OR email her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.