All great advice. Truly. As an introvert I CRAVE the time alone as a time to reenergize and restore depleted energy. It's not that I don't love spending time with my friends, I really do, it's just that being around people can often exhaust me. And the small talk I make all day on the phone wears me out. Here's the problem:
Everyone wants me to make more time for myself, but that often times feels like a "say no more often, just not to me".
Where is the line drawn? Who's feelings do I hurt? How do I say no often times to my closest friends? They're my depth conversations. The people I can actually connect to in a conversation about much much more than the weather or football. But they most often fall into my "spare time"
It's an effort. A making time because I care. A staying up until all hours of the morning because that's when stillness can exist. A sometimes being tired at work in order to carve out time to do some sewing or work on a quilt. A work in progress.
I know it will take time. Balance always does. But until them, friends, know that I'm trying. That I care. And that email and text messages are always an option (and something I find non-invasive). I'm sorry if feelings get hurt, but I can't just bottle myself up anymore and pretend like my "me time" doesn't matter. I'll figure it all out… I'll even figure out gym time, too ;)