Personal space. So often, it feels like a luxury because it’s hard to get. And one of the reasons why is because it’s really hard to ask for the space you need in a polite, yet assertive manner. It’s easy to come off seeming selfish, arrogant or rude. So, if you struggle with this, here are seven ways to ask for more space with a little more grace.

If you’re an introvert…

Introverts recharge their battery by spending time alone. So, if you need a break from your family or friends, simply say, “I love you, and I need some time alone right now. I’ll be back soon.”

If you like to shop alone…

Sales people may want to assist you, but if you prefer shopping alone, you may not have to say anything. In fact, pop in your earbuds and that should do the trick. 

If the conversation is over…

It’s really hard to close a conversation without racking up all the awkward moments. So, here’s an approach that’s both considerate and obvious: “It’s been great talking to you, I know you’re busy, so I won’t take up any more of your time.” Easy!

If you turn down an invitation…

Many of us say yes instead of no, even if we really don’t want to commit to something. If you can relate, this can help you out. Take a deep breath and say, “Thanks so much for inviting me. I’d love to, but I’m going to do my own thing right now.”

If the argument gets heated…

Arguments happen, but they can definitely escalate into something messy and hurtful. If you feel like you need a break, you can kindly and gently say, “I’m feeling very emotional right now, and I need some time to reflect on everything. Can we return to this later?”

If you feel overwhelmed…

You may feel the need to justify why you’re backing out, but instead, you can ask the person a sincere and vulnerable question. Instead of being a no-show and ghosting someone, say, “You know those days when you feel overwhelmed and just need some time alone? That’s where I’m at today.” They will probably understand and want you to have the space you need.

If you like traveling in peace…

Some people like to strike up conversations with strangers, but if you’d rather travel without the small talk, do two things. First, always have a book, or a set of documents with you. Then, simply say, “Please forgive me, but I really should review these before I arrive.”  Sweet and succinct.

You’ve probably heard that meditation is great to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety, and that meditation helps to increase feelings of calm and relaxation. But did you know that this ancient mindfulness practice can actually help you look younger? It’s true. Meditation can make your skin look younger and fresher. Namaste, anyone?

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During the summer, we lather up and cover ourselves with sunscreen. After all, you want to protect your skin from UV damage, prevent aging, wrinkles, sunburn and yes, even cancer. But many sunscreens contain chemicals that aren’t so great for your skin. So, along with safer sunscreens, it’s a good idea to eat these three foods to protect skin from sun damage, too.

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