Head­case

Five Sun­day rit­u­als for calmer Mon­days.

Good - - CONTENTS - with Dr Alice Boyes

Sun­day rit­u­als for calmer Mon­days

Here are five quick and ex­tremely prac­ti­cal ways to pre­pare for your week. Note: I’m not sug­gest­ing you do all of these. You might pick the one or two items on my list you’re most in­ter­ested in. Or, you can use my ideas as a spark for gen­er­at­ing your own.

1. Cre­ate 10 min­utes of free time.

Each Sun­day I do 10 min­utes of a “Mon­day” task. I then al­low my­self to re­coup the ben­e­fits by hav­ing 10 min­utes of chill out time on a Mon­day.

For ex­am­ple, last week­end I sold an item on eBay and needed to mail it on Mon­day. On Sun­day, I printed the postage, pack­aged it up ready to go, and put it at my front door.

Since Mon­days are in­cred­i­bly busy for many peo­ple, it would be easy to let this “banked” few min­utes be gob­bled up by an­other task. How­ever, I ex­plic­itly claim those min­utes I’ve got­ten ahead for re­lax­ing on Mon­day.

2. Cue up your en­ter­tain­ment for the week.

I like to lis­ten to pod­casts dur­ing down­time (driv­ing, wait­ing in line, run­ning er­rands etc). On Sun­days I’ll down­load episodes for the week. I might also browse my lo­cal li­brary’s website for au­dio­books I’m in­ter­ested in. Since I might need to go on a wait­list to bor­row the dig­i­tal item, this means I’ve al­ways got some­thing avail­able to lis­ten to. I also put charg­ing ca­bles and power packs that have mi­grated around my house or car, back to the places they’re sup­posed to be.

3. Pick your out­fits for the week.

I fol­low the Steve Jobs/ Mark Zucker­berg model of wear­ing dif­fer­ent ver­sions of the same thing ev­ery day. How­ever, if you pre­fer more va­ri­ety in your cloth­ing, con­sider get­ting your out­fits ready and cued up for the week on a Sun­day. If you want to wear more of your clothes, pick­ing your out­fits for the full week ahead is likely to push you in the di­rec­tion of more var­ied choices.

4. Give your body some TLC.

When life gets busy, it’s easy to let some el­e­ments of per­sonal care go. For ex­am­ple, your feet are dry and cracked be­cause you’re al­ways rush­ing and don’t take the two min­utes to mois­turise them. Give your body some TLC, whether that’s clip­ping your nails, go­ing for a walk around the block to re­lax, or switch­ing away from a prod­uct that doesn’t work for you (eg the vi­ta­mins you’ve been tak­ing are giv­ing you re­flux).

5. Or­der any­thing you’re likely to run out of in the next week or two.

When you’re al­most out of an item it’s easy to keep let­ting that slide un­til the point you’ve to­tally run out. For ex­am­ple, if your printer is low on toner, or you’ve been squeez­ing the last bit out of the tooth­paste tube for a week al­ready. Iden­tify a spe­cific time and place each week to re­order these types of items, so that you don’t let those un­done shop­ping list tasks drag on any fur­ther. Bonus: Re­view the up­com­ing week with your spouse or part­ner.

If you have a part­ner, spend 10 to 20 min­utes find­ing out what each other has go­ing on for the week and talk­ing about your plans for shared time. This can help pre­vent ten­sion aris­ing later due to mis­com­mu­ni­ca­tion or clash­ing plans.

Which of these tips was most in­ter­est­ing and po­ten­tially use­ful to you? Which was least? Is there any­thing you al­ready do on Sun­days that helps you? Is there any­thing you do spo­rad­i­cally that it would be use­ful to do more con­sis­tently?

Wrap­ping up

al­ice­boyes.com Psy­chol­ogy ex­pert Dr Alice Boyes is the au­thor of the books, The Anx­i­ety

Tool­kit and The Healthy Mind Tool­kit.

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