We hear about the importance of me time everywhere, even here. There is no doubt that me time is important, crucial even, to maintaining balance and taking care of ourselves.
But what happens when the moment you need me time the most is during a time you have PAID for…like a conference, where the intended purpose of said conference is to network, build relationships, and build my business?
Where do you take ME time?
This happened to me…and there is no better way to explain it than to say 1) it was painfully difficult and 2) I am incredibly lucky to have supportive friends that understood my need to stay in, order room service, and take the me time I needed for an evening. Instead of joining the other Blogalicious attendees for the first event or going out to dinner with a great group of bloggers, I made a choice.
My choice involved staying in my hotel room in pajamas, eating fettucini alfredo, and watching Greys Anatomy and Scandal from the comfort of my bed. But also? My choice involved crying. Tear after tear of frustration, loneliness (that, let’s be clear, I created myself by staying in) and insecurity. My choice meant that I had less time with a few bloggers I don’t get to see very often. It meant I could not share a meal or laughter with women I respect and consider friends. It meant I forfeited being “at the right place at the right time” because when it comes to this space, you never know what collaborative idea you might concoct over a meal or the course of an evening.
But in the end, I made the only choice that I could, for me, in that moment. Staying in, though often not the solution for rest and relaxation that I might hope for, gave me time to call my husband and to share, for once in a long time, my vulnerabilities with him. It gave me a chance to get in a good cry, because sometimes you just get to a point where crying is the only thing you can do.
Did my staying in help me feel better or refreshed? No.
Chances are good that being out with friends probably would have done more for me than staying in. But admitting to myself that I was not on my game, and not up for a night out? That was a big deal for me. Accepting my vulnerabilities to know that I needed me time, and not hiding them under the rug by putting on a happy face for an evening out, even in a professional setting, means that I took care of me.
And that is enough.