It is amazing how quickly the weekend flies by. The moment you’re finally settling in to relax, Monday morning has arrived. You wake up and realize that there are dishes still in the sink, your laundry is piled up awaiting the wash, and you’re throwing together any food you can find for lunch while you rush out the door for work.
This is not a very calm way to start your week!
In order to cruise into the week confidently and feel more productive than ever at the end of the weekend, allocate a little time on Sunday to do some prep work. By creating a new habit of preparation before the week begins, you’ll easily make any stress of an upcoming busy week much more manageable.
10 Tasks to do on Sunday to Be More Productive This Week
Check your calendar.
For many of us, stress quickly comes when we’re bombarded with unexpected tasks and commitments. Give your calendar a quick once-over so that you can mentally prepare ahead of time for anything coming up this week.
Write a weekly ‘to-do’.
Jot down a list of things you need to accomplish this week. Having it all written down will help to organize your thoughts, and take remembering everything off your shoulders. A handwritten list is much more satisfying when crossing off completed tasks.
You don’t need to clean your house from top to bottom every Sunday to have everything is in its place. Take a moment to assess your space, and see if the countertop, table, or coffee table are cluttered. Go through your mail, put things away, hang up your coat, and make sure everything is tidy and in its place. Go ahead and channel your inner Marie Kondo.
Tackle some basic chores.
Tidying, vacuuming, loading the dishwasher, putting laundry away – these tasks may seem overwhelming when looking at them as a whole, but they really only take about 5 minutes each. Even tackling just a couple of these chores will reduce stress going into your week significantly.
Download a new playlist.
Set yourself up with some motivational tunes to get into the groove of your week. Spotify has a Productive Morning playlist to follow, or build your own! Queue up some music so that it’s ready to go right when you wake up.
Plan your meals.
You don’t have to make 5 days’ worth of breakfasts, lunches, and dinners in order to be prepared. But thinking ahead and eliminating a few steps in meal prep does make a big difference. Cook up a big batch of brown rice, make hard-boiled eggs, chop lettuce, grill chicken and chop it. This will ensure that throwing together a quick, healthy meal will be simple and easy. No time to cook? At least portion out the leftovers from Sunday dinner in a container to take to work for lunch on Monday.
Check the weather.
Taking a quick glance at the weather forecast will make you prepared to choose an appropriate outfit easily the next morning. It’s a simple task to add to your routine, but it will speed up your clothing choice without any extra thought.
Take a few moments to yourself.
Sometimes we run around so much on the weekends, that we don’t take pause to check-in with our own mind and body. Write an entry in your journal, sit and read for 15 minutes, or take a nice long hot shower.
Hit the hay early.
A good night of sleep is so important to health. Matthew Walker, PhD and author of “Why We Sleep” has a lot to say on the topic, and makes the well-researched argument that a full 8-hours of sleep is vital for best and utmost brain function. When our brains function well, we naturally are more calm. So hit that pillow at a decent hour!
Allow extra time in the morning.
Once your Sunday planning is lined up, set your alarm to get up 10-15 minutes earlier than you usually do. Take a little extra time to wake up, stretch, sip your coffee, read a news article, and eat breakfast slowly. Having a calm morning routine is a great way to set yourself up for a more productive day.
The key to maximizing productivity each week is taking a little time to do some simple planning ahead. You’ll leave the weekend feeling relaxed and stress-free, and enter the work week feeling confident, calm, and collected. Now that’s a productive approach we can get on board with!
[Credit: Haylie. “21 Sunday Habits for a Productive Week.” The Morning Buzz Blog.]