It’s perceptibly true that you cannot pour from an empty cup, but so often we try to fill up our lives and those of others, without dispensing a little self-love for ourselves. If there is one thing that I preach to myself on the daily, it’s to make time for ‘me’; actually, make ME a priority in my life.

In a world of constant busyness filled with to-do’s and desires, it is easy to put your needs last on the list. Tack on travel filled with experiences, people and the never-ending need to do “all things” and you can slip down to the bottom of the importance list. With all of the hats I wear these days – marketer, coach, real estate investor, and the list goes on… I still make a priority to make me a priority. Here are my five guidelines to support you in making self-love and time a priority in your life

Make an Appointment with Yourself & Keep It
Carving out time for yourself is a must to making ‘you’ a priority. Practice this daily you will develop a ‘me-time’ habit. Think of it as setting up a meeting with your boss; planned and punctual. Schedule 45-60 minutes on your calendar, three to five days a week. During this appointment, focus on you – not social media, to-do lists or others. Read a few pages in a book, meditate and list out your intention for the day.

Embrace You & Don’t Feel Guilty About It
Making yourself a priority can leave you feeling guilt-ridden. There’s always something to do and someone to see. However, slicing time out for yourself regularly or even daily is so important to keep you positive, energized and ready for what your day brings. Try exercising, journaling, or leisurely reading to give yourself “me time”. Doing this often will become a habit and will soon keep you top of mind as you move along throughout your day.

Say No & Mean It
If it doesn’t add value or joy to your life, say NO! Eliminating activities, people and possessions that do not serve a positive purpose in your life will help to remove distractions and clutter that can fill up your time. Plus, the extra time you gain from saying no to things you really don’t care about will give the chance to spend on you and the things that are meaningful and worth it.

Feed Yourself Soul Food
Indulging in soul food is a good thing and I’m not talking about the crispy fried chicken and mashed potatoes and gravy. Filling up on what connects your mind, body, and soul will leave you feeling satisfied and nourished. Like a balanced diet, this can come in many forms, so fuel yourself food with activities that are rewarding like spending time outdoors, connecting with like-minded people, and being immersed in a hobby or passion.

Fight Yourself for Yourself
You vs. You. This is the biggest battle and competition you will face. This comes in the form of habits and thoughts and has the capacity to make or break your spirit and hustle. This is also probably the single most important thing that you can be aware of that will have a direct impact on making yourself a priority. After all, if you think you are a priority, you will likely do what it takes to make sure you stay at the top of the list. Consider being more aware of your thoughts, guided meditations, and maintaining an attitude of gratitude (even if only for ten minutes).

If you want truly want the ‘most out of life’ you must create a focus on your needs (mind, body, and spirit) vs. your wants (career, social life, and money). Only then will you begin to carve out ‘me time’ and live your life on purpose.