The 20-Minute Rule

For years, I have been sharing the 20 Minute Rule that has made a big difference in my life and others.  Everyone is busy and seems to be getting busier every day.  When I ask what they are busy doing, people tell me they are busy with children, sports activities, pets, work deadlines, commitments, household chores, etc., etc.

At the end of the day, I consistently hear people complain that they don’t have time for themselves.  The 20 Minute Rule requires a commitment to make yourself a priority and stop saying that you don’t have time, you can’t, you’re stressed, you have too much work to do, and allowing everything else to get in the way of your well-being.

Simply put, the 20 Minute Rule allows you to make yourself a priority for just 20 minutes a day and have a calming, quiet, stress relieving experience every day.  Start with 10 or 15 minutes if that makes it easier to achieve the goal and ensures a commitment to yourself! Last week, I had my annual check-up.  My doctor told me that she bought a Peloton but did not have time to use it and continued to pay her monthly fee and let the bike collect dust.  But she said she could always find another 15 or 20 minutes to work. I reminded her that Peloton has 10-, 15-, and 20-minute rides and other exercises.  She said that she tells everyone else to find time to exercise and de-stress but does not follow her own advice!  My guess is that she makes time this week after our conversation.

Another friend of mine who has a high stress job recently committed to a minimum of 10 minutes every morning and is working toward the 20-minute rule.  She realized that she could keep pushing the snooze button for 10 more minutes or get up and find time for herself, which ultimately makes her feel better to start the day!  Previously, she found time to sit in the long line at Starbucks, which was stressful.  Now she is not only making time for herself but still finding time for her morning coffee.

Try practicing positive affirmations that sound like, “I can/will make time for myself”.  Making time for yourself can boost your energy level, help you plan better, improve your health, focus on your well-being, and help with work-life balance.  Just 20 minutes a day can result in improving your confidence level, create awareness about what priorities are important, and better prepare you to deal with the ups and downs ahead of you. 

You can always extend the time beyond 20 minutes as you identify the best time of day, activity, and location.  I started years ago with 15 minutes of enjoying a cup of coffee every morning and realized that 20 minutes was even better because I did not have to “chugg” down my coffee.  To this day, I am selfish with my 20 minutes and not happy if my spouse interrupts my 20 minutes of peace and quiet in the morning!