If you need help figuring out your love language, please read my previous post What is your primary language?
Those of us who respond to the love language Quality Time as one of their primary languages, we love to spend time with loved ones. I for one love to spend time with a specific loved one, me. I could easy spend the day doing things by myself and have a great time, but this wasn’t always the case. Some things take extra effort and many times a routine. If you haven’t yet, you should read my article on routines, Hello Routine, my old Friend. Setting aside time in our routine to spend with ourselves makes sure that we spend time on ourselves.
Hobbies: If you haven’t found a good hobby yet please read my posts Hobbies that save Us. and Getting your Hands Dirty. Hobbies are a fantastic way to spend quality time with yourself. Many hobbies only require one person, you. There are some people who stack their hobbies, for example, listening to music or audio books while doing hand crafts. But the idea is to do something enriching with yourself. Try a new hobby once a month, add to your portfolio of adventure.
Get out of the house: Get out by yourself. When I was told that I should take myself out on dates I thought that was kind of a silly idea, I disliked being alone in public places. I was uncomfortable with myself in public thinking that others could see my vulnerability and judged me for my lack of companions. Before I would sit in a quiet part of my favorite Mexican restaurant with a book to occupy me. Now I am proud to have me as my companion to breakfast, to events, to new places. It takes some time and some perseverance to be able to ignore the negative self talk and enjoy the time you are able to spend on your own. Each time out on a date with myself I realized, allowing the enjoyment of the experience to override the negative chatter in my brain helped me to be more comfortable with myself and overcome my loneliness.
Get out with friends, meeting up for a coffee or a meal with a friend could be the quality time you need. I have a couple friends I have met for coffee and I always walk away fulfilled by our time chatting and relating. It doesn’t even have to be an outing type thing, just going to their home for a visit is nice. Some parents use play dates or school functions for their kids as a reason to spend time with other parents, did you ever notice how many parents were friends at school or co-op? Road trip or traveling to or with a friend, have a girls or guys weekend. I had to go to Columbus, Ohio one fall. My sister met me there, our reason for being there wasn’t a happy one, but we turned the 3 days in Ohio into a fun filled girl trip complete with antiquing and Zanesville Pottery. When we returned home, we were refreshed and ready to tackle whatever life handed us.
Exercise: This is a bilingual self care technique. It falls under Physical Touch, and Quality Time. Really exercise is a fantastic way to take care of ourselves. If you have not found a way to exercise that you find enjoyable, keep looking. Maybe check out the local Y or Rec Center for team sports or classes you might enjoy. Go walking, find some trails or make yourself a walking route that delights your senses. Check your community pages for classes, sometimes there is yoga or Tai chi in the park. Maybe join a line dancing group, runners group, or a cycling team. The possibilities are endless.
Reading: Curling up on the sofa with a good book for the afternoon, what a glorious way to spend a couple of hours. Escape into a world of southern belles or tracking down the killer, what great exercise for the mind. Maybe you love learning new things, or maybe need inspiration for a hobby. Do you have a favorite author? I personally love books, the way they smell, the way they feel, and that you can choose the adventure you want to embark on whenever you pick one up. Do you have a reading bucket list?
Journaling: Journaling is a great way to spend time with yourself and your thoughts. There are many methods to journaling, some more creative than others. There is the brain dump method, where you just dump all of your thoughts onto sometimes pages upon pages in your journal. There are gratitude journals where you list all the things you are grateful for. There are drawing diaries, similar to sketch books but they have prompts. There are prompted journals where you write about a particular topic and how it made you feel, which helps your self discovery process. There are bullet journals, these are creative planners/journals that help you keep all aspects of your life together in one place. I have been doing a bullet journal for about a year now, and I love it.
Recently, I have begun to use a self awareness journaling technique where I combine a few things, first I list 3 things that are bothering me, then I list 3 things I’m grateful for, after that I write down my feelings, goals, and maybe a to do list each day. At the end of the week I go back and assess my week. Have my problems gotten less bothersome? What am I doing to overcome them? What have I learned about myself this week? I love this method because it really helps to focus the journaling to come to a better understanding of oneself.
Whatever you decide to do to speak your Quality Time love language in self care I hope that it brings you joy. If you have tried different techniques that help you, please share in the comments section.