Larry James' CelebrateLove.com BLOG

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Me Time vs. We Time

Filed under: Putting Yourself FIRST!,Relationships — Larry James @ 8:30 am
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“Craving alone time in a relationship is totally normal.” ~ David Wygant

I can attest that from my point of view, this is correct. The more positive the image that you have of yourself will keep you from being afraid of spending time being alone.

In a recent article, University of Michigan psychology professor Dr. Terri Orbuch explains how having “me time” can help strengthen the “we time” in a relationship. According to her study, which has followed more than 370 couples for over 25 years, 11.5% of partners cite lack of privacy, or “me time,” as causing unhappiness.

PuttingYOUfirstOrbuch believes that time alone is critical to successful relationships. This time allows a person to pursue activities that they enjoy without worrying about their partner’s reaction. It is also essential for people to have time to think through issues, process emotions, and just relax without being obligated to someone else.

Learning a new hobby or honing a special skill can be empowering and build self-esteem. These new skills can be brought into the relationship and shared, which will strengthen and broaden the relationship. Orbuch cautions that alone time should not be used as an escape from your relationship, but rather a way to expand interests. She also stresses that alone time should be enjoyed. If you are spending an afternoon at the beach with a good book feeling guilty about the dishes in the sink and the dinner you didn’t make, it kind of kills the mood.

Also, it is essential that you be honest with your partner. Let him or her know where you went and what you did. Being independent does not mean you have to be deceptive. Having a little time to yourself can make you more available to your partner in the short run and diversify and deepen your relationship in the long run.

As a relationship coach, my experience has been that we need both we time and me time. The opportunity for men and women to recharge their batteries, hang out with their friends and just have time to be themselves – is critical. It’s important to to occasionally seek a break from your partner. You do this by making yourself a high priority.

Remember Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs: human beings must meet their basic needs before they can move on to higher-level goals. Studies suggest that not taking care of ourselves is unhealthy for those who depend upon us. Taking care of yourself will make you a better parent and partner. You’ll be more fun to be around and more responsive to your family when you take care of yourself.

“Try to find at least half an hour to an hour every day for you. It doesn’t have to be all at once. And before you decide what you’re going to do with the time you’re building into your schedule, promise yourself that you won’t waste it.” ~ Gina Shaw

If a half an hour seems like too much, begin with 5 to 10 minutes. Notice the difference it makes. Work at increasing the time you spend with yourself.

In a world that is so frenetic and fast-paced, we all need an occasional breather – it’s called alone time or “me time.” It’s not easy given the stresses of our daily lives, but if you seek a better relationship with your partner, perhaps it’s time to give yourself a break. Not doing so hinders your chances of self-realization and fulfillment. I believe it is your responsibility or duty to do so. Be someone that makes you happy and schedules happy things for you to do. It is so important to take care of your own health and peace of mind first. If you won’t… who will?

It’s time to put yourself on your priority list!

“Finding as little as 15-30 minutes a day of uninterrupted, relaxing “me” time is challenging at best. But we all instinctively know that when we take time for ourselves to pursue our passions, do the things that we enjoy, relax or even do nothing at all, we end up happier, healthier and feeling better. “Me” time allows us to de-stress, unwind and rejuvenate. Taking time for yourself allows you to renew, heal, and create reserves of energy and peace.” ~ Ellen G. Goldman

Larry’s NOTE: The references to the Dr. Orbuch study were originally published by GoodTherapy.org.

CLoveLOGOCopyright © 2014 – Larry James. This idea is adapted from Larry’s books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” Larry James is a professional speaker, author, relationship coach and an award winning nondenominational Wedding Officiant. He performs the most “Romantic” wedding ceremony you will find anywhere. Something NEW about relationships is posted every 4th day on this Relationships BLOG.

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