Being a caretaker can be both a loving experience and a challenging experience.  Whether you’re the primary caregivers for your aging parents and your children or you’re carrying the weight of your work or volunteering project, giving yourself the love and care that you so generous provide to others is crucial to your continuing ability to give.  When you’re more emotional, physically, and mentally healthy,  you’re less likely to burn out, feel resentment, and the joy of giving will again feel nourishing to you. However, you might sometime feel like it’s not okay to take time for yourself. Instead of asking you to be more selfish, let’s take a look at how you’re using your time.

  1. Write down everything that’s a priority for you. Here’s a handy time management worksheet for you to track your time. You can use the pull down menu or simply fill the table with your own activities.
    • Playing with my kids
    • Time with my spouse
    • Having fun
    • Sleeping enough
    • My career
    • Getting projects done at work (rank them in terms of priority)
    • Exercise
    • Make healthy meal
    • Spending quality time with friends
    • Taking care of finance
    • …..
  2. Rank them in priority
  3. Take a piece of paper and make a grid with 3-min sections for 1 day (to upto 7 days). Link to online time management table
  4. Keep track of everything you do by the 30 minutes for 1-7 days
  5. Now do some data mining: Compare how much time you’re spending in each area with what priorities they are.
  6. Is there anything that’s high priority and you’re not giving it the time?
  7. Is there something that’s low priority and you’re giving way too much time?
  8. Can you arrange your time so you’re taking care of your priorities?
  9. Can you combine multiple activities into one time slot so it’s more efficient

Is what you say that’s important to you and what you actually do in alignment? You might be surprised how little you spend on tasks you give high priority (spouse time, finance..) and how much you’re spending on tasks that’s low priority (like social media, grocery, getting that right pair of shoes).  If your results are very consistent with your priorities and you still can’t find enough time for self-care, it’s good time to start outsourcing (asking for help).  If outsourcing brings up feeling of guilt, inadequacy or selfishness you might want to talk to someone to help your understand the reasons you’re feeling this way.  I offer a free 2o-min initial phone consultations and will give you ideas on how to overcome your challenges in loving yourself more in that phone call.  If you need more support, we can schedule regular counseling session to work together.  Call me at 650.397.1376 or email

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