If you sometimes dread Mondays with all those days stretching out to the weekend–that far out time when you can relax and have fun–then read on. That’s no way to treat yourself. There’s lots of advice available. For example, early this year Forbes offered 11 ways to beat (or avoid) the dreaded Monday Blues.
Here’s their list:
- Identify the problem
- Prepare for Monday on Friday
- Make a list of the things you’re excited about
- Unplug for the weekend
- Get enough sleep and wake up early
- Dress for success
- Be positive
- Make someone else happy
- Keep your Monday schedule light
- Have fun at work
- Have a post-work plan
That’s a pretty serious list largely centered around your work at the salt-mine, which is not surprising in a Forbes article. There’s some good thoughts in that list, but they should be condensed into a much simpler list that reflects a better balance between work and all your other life activities. That, after all, is what LifeHack is all about, and a simpler list is more likely to be one you follow week in, week out. Here is an attempt at such a list.
It works around the idea of one small task to do every day. You may need to juggle the order to better fit any time commitments you have. However try to stick to the #1 task. You could even write the 7 tasks on file cards so that you can shuffle the cards and make sure you have an order that works for you in the week ahead.
#1 Sunday Evening – Key goals for the week
Take 5 minutes to remind yourself of any important goals you may have for the week and which days you intend to achieve them. They don’t need to be big goals. Remember the journey of a thousand miles starts with your first step. Factor in that daily exercise you should be doing, however short. With this mini-plan, when Monday comes, you’ll have lots to look forward to.
#2 Monday morning – Make someone else happy
Think of the people you know and decide which of them might appreciate some kind gesture from you. It could be something small. Even saying hello to someone you see often but never greet can do wonders for their day. You hardly need to be reminded that you too will feel happier when you see how your action is appreciated.
#3 Tuesday morning – Plan some surprise fun activity with your partner this evening
Surprises are always nice to receive, so your partner will find this even more fun than something they’re expecting. If you don’t have a partner, then get in touch with a family member, friend or colleague to join in something that gives you both pleasure.
#4 Wednesday morning – Eat a healthy lunch
You should be eating well throughout the week, but take special pains today to have a nutritious and healthy lunch, perhaps at some eating venue you don’t visit very often.
#5 Thursday morning – Plan your weekend
Plan some recreational activity for the weekend and do whatever preparations are needed to make it happen. The only people you need to keep happy are you (and your partner) so make the most of every weekend opportunity you have.
#6 Friday morning – TGIF so do something different
Everyone tends to let their hair down a little on Friday, so make this the day that you do something very different each week. That could be a lunch time visit to a nearby art gallery or a quick round of mini-golf.
#7 Saturday morning – Make sure you get some exercise today
You should be getting convenient exercise every day, but don’t forget to include Saturday. The weekend is not a time to be a vegetable. Don’t sleep the weekend away. Rise early, enjoy the day and get moving with that recreational activity you planned on Thursday.
Although this is a short list, you will find you will tend to do more every day as you complete at least the task for the day. If you find some other daily task is more important, then why not suggest that in a comment here. More ideas can only lead to better lists. By developing and using your own list, Monday can be a gateway to a fun-filled week rather than the start of a same old-same old, dreary work week.
Weekend at last! Something you’re so looking forward to after a brutal week at work.