How to incorporate self-care into your life when you’re “too busy”

- December 26, 2022 2 MIN READ

So many business owners are time-poor and stretched to their limits. But when it comes to self-care, Chelsea Pottenger says you’re never ‘too busy’ to fit it in, and in fact, it’s the most important thing you should be making time for.

Every week you have 168 hours. Say you sleep eight hours each night, that’s 56 hours. And then say you have a full-time job, that’s approximately 40 hours. Where is the rest of your time going?

Do you scroll social media late at night, binge watch TV shows, or do you set aside the self-care that you know will be so beneficial for your everyday life?

To me, self-care is the most worthwhile thing you can make time for. How can you show up as the best version of yourself for your family, friends and career if you don’t take care of yourself first?

Laura Vanderkam, author of 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think explores the concept that we all have the same amount of time – it’s what you do with that time that makes all the difference. Tracking your time, identifying how much self-care time you need, and then scheduling in those commitments to yourself will do wonders for your physical, mental and emotional health.

Where does your time go?

woman scrolling phone in bed at night

Let’s start with an exercise to help you understand where your time goes.

Get a piece of paper and jot down answers to the following questions:

  1. How much time do I spend in bed?
  2. How much time do I spend at work?
  3. How much time do I spend commuting?
  4. How much time do I spend shopping for food and cooking meals?
  5. How much time do I spend cleaning?
  6. How much time do I spend exercising?
  7. How much time do I spend with friends and family?

Next, take 168 hours and subtract those numbers from it. Once you’ve mapped out where your time goes and how much time you have left, decide how much self-care you personally want.

Let’s say you want to meditate for 15 minutes and journal for 20 minutes each day. That’s just over four hours a week to set aside time for. Can you reduce your screen time by 30 minutes a day to incorporate this? I’m guessing you can; it’s whether you’re willing and wanting to make that intentional change.

There you have it, in all your busyness, you have found your extra time. Now, you get to decide what you do with it.

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Now read this:

Why self-care for business owners isn’t selfish

Small Business Guide to Tax Time with Mark Chapman