I'm currently reading the Biggest Loser's 30 day jump start as I'm back in a BL contest at work (the 2nd, after winning the first) with 2 new competitors. I'm always looking for ways to efficiently reach my goals, no matter what the goal may be. I started to read a little ahead (typical) and the title for Day Three's lesson is 'get selfish with you time'. That title grabbed my attention right away.
I think with getting fit and healthy, as with most goals you do have to allow yourself to have some 'me' time. And I realized as I was reading the lesson, that for the people who go on that show this is a big deal. They've allowed their families, friends, kids, responsibilities, and jobs to hold them back from taking the necessary steps to get their health under control. Something that could easily happen to any of us. I know that I've allowed my friends (and sometimes family) to keep me from the right amount of sleep, staying up with housework, studying when I was in school, etc.
Life is full of tough choices and while we want to make sure those we love know how important they are to us, we also have to make us time. Here's my argument though. I don't think making your health a priority IS selfish. Ultimately, you're taking care of yourself so that you can spend more time with your family and friends over the course of your life.
Balance is sometimes difficult for me. I truly love everything about my life. I love being a homeowner and taking care of my place (though some weeks you wouldn't know it from the looks of it!). I love leading a bible study for young women and growing with them as we 'do life' together. I enjoy my job almost every minute of every day (couldn't say every because data entry does not get me excited). I feel fortunate to be able to travel and see new cities as a result of said job. I'm enthralled with reading and writing. I treasure talking to my family members on an almost daily basis. Amazingly, I've started to really enjoy my daily workouts. I've always loved laying by the pool with a good book. I'm also in a book club, which I'd taken a break from while I was teaching personal finance but am now back in.
I dabble in a bit of everything. Curiosity tends to get the best of me and I find myself doing activities such as ceiling fan installation classes and wandering the library selecting new books. With the 4th of July in a few days it seems only appropriate to point out that we have an incredible amount of freedom to do as we wish. We also have an overwhelming amount of resources to learn, which a sadly small amount of people utilize. That's not a freedom that I take for granted, or that I'm willing to miss the chance to take advantage of.
So here's my challenge...if we're not getting our hands dirty helping others, then we're missing a great opportunity to give back. While I encourage getting time to yourself and doing something worthwhile with it, I truly believe that the best and most memorable times in my life are those spent helping others. The trick, is that you have to find a balance. When you give too much of yourself, allowing yourself to be worn out and pouring nothing back in - you will eventually have nothing left to give. Nothing of value or worth, at least. But when you use all your time for selfish matters, you develop no legacy to leave behind.