My Darling Lovelies – the world is burning out. It seems that everyone in my life; family friends, colleagues and clients alike all have one thing in common – they’re all exhausted. They’re all shattered and then, guess what? They feel guilty when they rest – they’re so used to doing, doing, doing that time for themselves feels unnatural and unhealthy.
Is it any wonder? We live in a world where there’s really no escape from our commitments. In a fast-paced, 24-hour culture where we’re never truly alone as long as we have a mobile phone, how can we take care of ourselves and make sure that we don’t end up as gibbering wrecks on the floor?
Find your own little oasis of happiness
Introducing the one hour a day happiness project
It’s very simple. All you have to do is make a commitment to yourself right now, this minute, to carve one hour a day out of your schedule. What you do with it comes next, but first I’m going to tell you why this isn’t just a luxury, it’s a necessity.
I know what you’re thinking: I don’t have enough hours in the day as it is, and now I’m supposed to find an extra hour from nowhere. I can’t afford to take time out for myself. There are always people around. If I stop now I’ll never start again.
But if you think of that one hour as part of your working day, as recharging your batteries so that you can be more effective and productive for the rest of the time, then it becomes a rather valuable asset.
When was the last time you stopped to read an hour of a book every day?
How to find one hour a day
It can be tricky, especially if you work full time and have kids, or if you have children who aren’t yet in education. The best way is to find a time when you usually start to slump and do nothing – or when you would usually waste time doing something else. For example, on your lunch break at work, after the kids are in bed, when they’re down for a nap or even when you’re lying in bed at night, if your day is just too busy.
What to do with your hour
Anything that makes you happy. This is the crucial part, it has to make YOU happy. For some people, that might be meditation, for others it could be painting, it could be learning a language, or writing poetry, or hugging your pet, or doing equations, or exercise, or reading a book, or having a hot, relaxing bubble bath.
It doesn’t even have to be the same thing every day. It doesn’t need to cost any money. Sometimes it doesn’t even require you to move. I have lots of eclectic interests. Sometimes I use my hour to bake a cake, sometimes I use it to write a song, sometimes I just lie there and fantasise about winning the lottery!
Taking the one hour a day challenge
All you have to do is commit now to taking an hour a day to do something that makes you happy. Then keep a one-hour a day journal. You can write as much or as little as you like. It can just be a brief update about what you did in your hour, or you can start to document how you are feeling in your day-to-day life.
Will you take the one hour a day challenge with me? I’d love to hear how you plan to use your hour – leave your thoughts in the comment box below