Sun | Sep 23, 2018

Connecting Through 'Me Time'

Published:Monday | June 8, 2015 | 12:00 AMJody-Anne Lawrence

Falling in love is something that we would all hope for - the bliss of being with someone we love who gives us butterflies and the hope it's our happily every after.

But in reality, happily ever after is not effortless. It takes hard work, and as with all hard work, sometimes we need a break. So taking a little 'me time' while you are in a relationship is very important.

Having a partner who is like your best friend is great - someone who can tell every and anything is great, but sometimes you just need to get away - to rejuvenate yourself. This is not at all unnatural - it's something that relationship specialist and sexologist Dr Sidney McGill recommends.

"Everyone needs some me time. At least 20 minutes of the day where you can just sit and meditate and be alone," McGill noted.

But he notes that me time is not only limited to meditation. McGill playfully refers to it as 'care time' where you take care of yourself. So getting your hair done or a massage is something that will go a far way. A girls or boys' night out is also an important personal-time activity that one should take.

One needs to let one's hair down around people who know you and love you unconditionally and freely without needing anything in return. Spending this time away from your partner gives you time to spend on yourself.

"When you are spending time with friends, it is not to discuss any problems you are having with your partner. It is not good to discuss your partner in a group, and they usually will not be objective. You can have one person as a confidant but me time is not the time for it," noted McGill.

spouses' feelings

Partners should also be cognisant of their spouses' feelings when they decide to take their me time. McGill stated that one should make their partners familiar with their friends in order to keep the relationship transparent. Reassure your partner that you love them and care for them, so that when you ask for space it does not appear like you are pushing them away, but rather you just need the time to work on you and maybe they will do the same.

Many might say that me time means that your relationship is insufficient or lacking, but it is quite the contrary. According to McGill, personal time benefits your relationship. He notes that this will take away some of the edge you are feeling due to other stresses, and this allows you to handle conflicts in your relationship better.

"It reduces anxiety, making you less reactive. So if something happens in your relationship, you are better able to handle it," he explains. He noted it helps one to take things one step at a time, so they are less easily overwhelmed.

A happy you, makes a happy relationship, so take some time to take care of yourself so that you can be the best you for both yourself and your partner.