Have you recently enjoyed the Easter break with two shorter weeks following each other? In Australia, workers enjoyed a bonus of an extra public holiday making three short working weeks. As a result of these holidays, the working week seemed more enjoyable and manageable, with an almost equal balance of work and leisure time.
I recently have been reading about how changing your mindset can improve how you see life, improve your mental health and put some zing and purpose back in your day; link: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-06-26/fixed-vs-growth-mindset-at-work-and-in-life/9897782 Many of us are working in jobs that we are not happy with; wish we could change or simply just leave, but this is often not realistic or possible. Usually, the articles talk about how to improve the working week, link: https://www.abc.net.au/life/how-to-improve-work-life-without-quitting-job/9751640 so that you can manage the 48 weeks or so that you are at work every year. Some of these strategies include:
- Treating work like a project that has a beginning and an end
- Chatting to new people to find out what jobs they are doing
- Switch off at the end of the day
- Work on a project after work
- Get some exercise at lunchtime
- Create rituals
However, it is infrequent that articles discuss reframing how you see the weekend as a strategy to manage how you feel about work. Given that we usually only have two days to wind down and prepare for the next week, two days doesn’t seem long enough to do much at all.
New thoughts about the weekend suggest mapping out a plan for what you want to do over a year so that when the weekend comes around, you know what is going to happen, link: https://hbrascend.org/topics/treat-your-weekend-like-a-vacation/ The anticipation and excitement of looking forward to the weekend knowing that you are going to undertake an activity or project can seem like a holiday. The plan can include activities that you enjoy such as walking different trails, going away, doing home projects, housework, catching up with friends or family. These are all activities that we do anyway but reframing them as ‘holidays’ can build anticipation in your week and make you feel as if you are on ‘holidays’ not just waiting for the next week to roll around.
If this all seems too structured, start small. Take a year planner and work out where you would like to think about your weekend as a ‘holiday’. Work out what activities you would like to achieve and draw up a timetable. If this works out well, you can use the same process to plan two more ‘holiday’ weekends. The key to maximising your weekend is to think about how much time you have to work with, your physical and financial resources and what you want to achieve in the time. Four key steps to get you on your way to a fabulous weekend include:
- Scheduling your days
- Managing your time
- Seeing new things
- Getting things done
Remember you have 1440 minutes each day for two days every weekend to achieve some amazing things with no one telling you how to do them or what to do! What are you going to plan?
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So, throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” H. Jackson Brown Jr.
Dr Janene Piip