Me time? What’s that?

Lorraine Heller

time outMe time [mee-tahym] noun
Time when you can do what you want to do: All mothers of young children should try to find some me time.

Quite tellingly, almost all the online dictionaries I checked for a definition of “me time” returned blank searches. The only successful attempt delivered the rather patronising example given above.

Ask a real mum how she defines “me time”, and more often than not she’ll say it’s the thirty seconds she has to take a few deep breaths after her head hits the pillow and before she’s fast asleep.

A recent poll returned rather more optimistic results: one third of women get 30 minutes of “me time” a day.  We conducted our very own highly scientific, randomized online survey (oh alright, we asked you on Facebook and Twitter), and most of the responses were along the lines of “no me time at all!”

Women today are running around in a million and one directions, juggling six roles at once; you’re a mum, a wife, and employee, a cleaner, a cook and a taxi driver – but hardly ever just “me”! Sound familiar?

Well, we’re not pretending it’s easy to find some precious moments for yourself, but we are optimistic that it’s possible – and we’re sharing some great tips to help you carve out that time. They won’t all work for everyone, but the idea is that you pick and choose what fits in with your own lifestyle.  Try these out and send us your feedback!

  • Develop a speedy makeover routine. Just because you’re a busy mum doesn’t mean you have to give up looking a feeling good.
  • Block off one day to spend at home. Try to dedicate a day where you don’t go anywhere, and when your family can just go with its own flow, without deadlines and clock-watching.
  • Scale back your social time. Being a social butterfly is hard work. Think about who you actually want to see. Chances are you make time for them already anyway.
  • Get a new hobby. Wish you had the time to learn a new skill but can’t commit to a class? Take an online course which you can fit in around your busy schedule.
  • Enjoy books, movies or series. Bring a book or laptop to read or watch movies while the kids do their activities. That hour of ballet will fly by, while you escape into another world.
  • Plan sleepovers to coincide. Plan the kids’ sleepovers on the same night, so the house is empty for the night for the two of you. An evening alone and breakfast in bed: bliss!

Let us know how you get along on [email protected] – or share your own secrets and discoveries for grabbing some “me time”!