Singing can be a busy and stressful profession. We often run from rehearsals to coachings to practice sessions. Where can you fit in the “me time?" Being relaxed and healthy is important to becoming a successful singer, so we need to be sure to make time for ourselves. Here are some methods to find more time for yourself.
1. Schedule in time for yourself throughout the day
Your day is probably packed with running from one activity to the next, but there are usually little breaks where you can find a bit of time to relax. Do you get a lunch break? Use this time to find a quiet place and read a book or listen to music. It’s fun to get lunch with your friends or colleagues, but if you need time for yourself, don’t be afraid to turn down a lunch invite.
If you don’t think you can find time in between activities, try getting up a little earlier in the morning. Sometimes just 10-30 extra minutes in the morning can make all the difference in having a good day. You can take time having breakfast, read the news, or just enjoy what the quiet morning has to offer.
Some singers spend a good portion of the day commuting. Use this time to relax with a podcast or audiobook rather than stressing about getting to your next destination. Enjoy all of these little moments!
2. Put down the screens
Most of us always have a phone, tablet, or computer on us at all times. When we have those five-minute breaks during rehearsal, almost everybody gets out his or her phone. Checking email or social media is not always the most productive use of your break. Try using your break to close your eyes, stretch your body, or go outside to get some vitamin D.
3. Make a physical wish list
It can be hard to do the things we want to do or have been meaning to do because we are so busy. We often put off fun activities, socializing, or goals. By making a physical wish list and putting it in a visible place, we are reminded of our ambitions. Maybe you’ve been meaning to hang a picture in your room or dye your hair a fun color, so let the list remind you of these undertakings. Constantly remind yourself of your hobbies and activities outside of singing, and you’ll be excited to make time for them.
4. Learn how to say no
As singers, we occasionally get overwhelmed because we bite off more than we can chew. A friend or colleague may ask a favor of you, but you know you don’t have time for it or you know it will create more stress. It’s ok to say no. Fellow musicians especially will understand being overworked. To help you contemplate whether you should say no or not, think about your "me time." If you accepted this gig or helped with this favor, would you be able to find time for yourself? Remember, "me time" is healthy and helps you be a better singer, colleague, and friend.
5. Know when to ask for help
Sometimes when we are stressed and busy, it’s hard to find time to do little things such as chores or errands. It’s okay to ask for help with these things or anything else. Ask your partner or roommate if they can pick up groceries, clean the bathroom, or even throw in some of your laundry. Good friends and family can recognize when you are especially stressed, and they are usually more than willing to help.
Having time for yourself is important for everyone, no matter the profession. It can be hard for singers to find that time due to our busy and irregular schedules. If you change your routine to fit in "me time," it won’t be a chore, and it will be something you look forward to. Being physically and mentally healthy is imperative as a singer, so schedule in the time to make it happen!