Sundays are meant to be the day of rest. Hours stretch and anything seems possible until dusk. Thoughts of meetings and other demands on our time for the upcoming week can make us want to stay up as late as possible to extend our freedom, and the Sunday Scaries lead to a bad case of the Monday Blues.
Sunday Scaries are real. In today’s fast-paced world, you must move, innovate, and strategize to even stay relevant. This type of pressure can drain us and make us dread the week ahead without question.
Not everyone knows how to tackle their pre-week anxiety so they can turn it into a spark to transform the week into a great one. The answer to the Sunday Scaries is fairly simple and only requires a nominal time investment.
Instead of ruminating on the tasks and activities ahead, create a map or plan that charts what you have to do and what you want to do without rushing. You can make time to accomplish all your goals, exercise and have some time for your hobbies. Busyness is not the same as productivity.
Weekly planning can save your next seven days. You can have more control over your time with a schedule that works in your favor.
Divide your week into activities, tasks and events. By dividing time wisely, you can reduce your stress levels. Goals can be short-term and spread over the next few days to make them more manageable. Balancing personal and professional pursuits can create more free time in your week.
You are more than your job. Planning for the week does not just include professional or academic goals. Focus on nourishing yourself through food, socialization, and mental health activities.
Determine your professional objectives and personal goals. Learning a new language, cooking healthy meals from scratch, and reading more may be some personal long-term goals that have been set aside. Long-term goals can be broken down into smaller ones to accomplish each week. Achievable weekly goals can make longer goals more attainable.
A sound body houses a sound mind. Nutrition is the foundation of a good week. Cooking healthy meals every night during the week can present a challenge. Preparing meals from scratch can help you eat healthier and save money, but many households struggle to find time to cook or don’t know where to start. Have a strategy in place to avoid feeling like the work day extends past dinner time.
If you have a partner or family, you can divide food-related duties. Make the duties as specific as possible and have deadlines. One person can plan the weekly menu featuring recipes everyone approves of and the other can order groceries. Kids and teens can help put away the groceries or by doing inventory on the fridge and pantry to reduce food waste.
Schedules and preferences should be taken into consideration. Some households prefer to cook every night. Others cook on the weekend and freeze the meals to reheat during the week. A great way to have a warm and tasty meal waiting for you when you walk through the door is to use a crockpot. Explore meal subscriptions to save even more time. Most include all the ingredients needed and are designed to be prepared quickly.
Endorphins are released when we exercise. Sitting hunched over a desk all day can create back and neck aches. Exercise can ease these aches and help clear our heads. Divide fitness goals into the short-term to keep you on track. You don’t have to have the same routine you had in high school or even a few years ago.
Explore easy workouts to start and then try harder ones as your confidence builds. A consistent routine can shed unwanted pounds, build muscles, and boost stamina.
The brain needs rest and enjoyment to be content. Stress is optional, even though many of us experience it daily. Deep breathing can be one way to center yourself and gain clarity. Meditation can also help. It can take on the form of anything that requires deep focus like cleaning, stretching, painting, doing a puzzle or working on a car. Anything that gives you the space to process feelings and thoughts can be counted as mindfulness.
Pencil in time to focus on non-work and family activities that can be done at your convenience a few times a week. They can include hobbies and catching up on an episode or two of your favorite show.
Create a weekly planning routine so you already have your blocks of time accounted for. Start by blocking time to create your weekly schedule. This can be on Sunday morning, Friday night or Saturday afternoon. To keep your schedule tight, learn how to prioritize. Not everything is important. Which task is the worthiest of your time? The Pareto Principle states 20% of activities result in 80% of the consequences. Make a list of what truly matters and give them a ranking.
The next step could be writing down spoken and unspoken deadlines. Then marking down all the subtasks required to meet the deadlines. Remember to include free time — it is easy to overbook yourself when making your weekly schedule.
No matter how many times you have accomplished a task, you can still underestimate how long it will take. You should also take unexpected issues into consideration. These include flat tires, sick kids, emergency meetings or a lost wallet. Keep your weekly schedule flexible so you can adjust as needed.
So yes, sometimes Sundays can be scary, but with the right preparation and techniques — it could be a bit more enjoyable.