There are so many good tips and tools and strategies that can help us live a fuller, more authentic and meaningful life. Tips that can lower our stress, help us lose weight, prevent overwhelm and improve our relationships. But learning about these tools and ideas and strategies just isn’t enough. These gems are only helpful to us if we are able to figure out how to implement them and allow them to be useful in our lives. .

There is an ingredient that is essential for metabolizing good information. It’s necessary for creating a plan for implementation. It’s a crucial factor in reducing stress and overwhelm. And, it is in very short supply in many of our lives. I’m speaking about good, quality, quiet time.

What I see in my own life and in the lives of the women I work with, is that many of the things we can do to increase our happiness, productivity, success with weight or health, or whatever it is that we want to do, only really happen if we allow ourselves enough quiet time to listen to ourselves and discover the how and when and why of implementing. When we have quiet time we can hear what we need. We can think about how to address the need, and we can plan and schedule the actions we are going to take.

Do you get enough quiet time? When you have an opportunity for quiet time, do you allow yourself to take it?

It’s interesting about quiet time. Many of us—especially women with a lot going on—have a tendency to avoid quiet time—to fritter it away or to distract ourselves from it—to fill it with things like the internet or TV we don’t really care about. Or to fill it with food and nibbling or overeating.

It sounds so simple, but truthfully, taking more quiet time isn’t always an easy thing. For someone perpetually on the go, the beginning stages of quiet time can be uncomfortable. Listening to ourselves or discovering what we need can be difficult. And sometimes we don’t like discovering that we have questions or needs that we don’t know how to answer or address. But here’s the real truth. If we don’t take the time to listen and hear what we feel or need or want, we won’t be able to match those things up with the tips and tools and strategies we know about or are capable of acquiring.

Do you get enough quiet time? What does ideal quiet time look like for you? I encourage you to choose a regular “quiet” activity—walking, writing or journaling, quiet contemplative or meditative time—maybe a gentle yoga workout. Consider how you could add some quiet time to your week and make a commitment to stick with it for at least a week. It’s the kind of action that really pays off.

Author's Bio: 

Melissa McCreery, PhD, ACC, is a Psychologist, ICF Certified Life Coach, emotional eating expert, and the founder of, a company dedicated to providing smart resources to busy women struggling with food, weight and overwhelm. Find out more, read tips and articles, and pick up her free audio series: “5 simple steps to move beyond overwhelm with food and life” at