Sun­day is not the new Mon­day

Week­end work creep should be shut down

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - BUSINESS - By John Boit­nott

SAlso, 61% said they strug­gled to not think about work over the week­end. Of this group, two-thirds also ad­mit­ted they checked and an­swered workre­lated emails on a typ­i­cal week­end.

To that I say, put Sun­day — and work — in its proper place.

For the sake of our health and our san­ity, we should stop or at least work to min­i­mize Sun­day work creep and keep work Mon­day through Fri­day where it be­longs. You should work to re­gain this bal­ance, even if you’re in the mid­dle of build­ing a startup or are a free­lancer fac­ing in­con­sis­tent in­come.

Here are some ways to win back your Sun­day from peo­ple (in­clud­ing your­self ) who are try­ing to use this day of rest as an ex­tra day of work:

Stop the guilt

There is no rea­son to feel bad about tak­ing an en­tire day off from work. It’s nec­es­sary for phys­i­cal, emo­tional and men­tal health, as well as for pro­duc­tiv­ity and cre­ativ­ity. Co-work­ers or col­leagues should also rec­og­nize the value of let­ting you recharge your bat­ter­ies.

To stop feel­ing guilty about time off, you need to ig­nore the naysay­ers and | un­day used to be for re­lax­ing, spend­ing time with fam­ily and friends and catch­ing up on per­sonal tasks.

Now, I talk to more and more en­trepreneur­s and others who say they don’t use the week­end to rest nearly as much as they once did. Maybe it’s be­cause tech­nol­ogy, and even some pop­u­lar on­line ad­vice, en­cour­ages peo­ple to stay avail­able for work out­side tra­di­tional busi­ness hours. A 2017 sur­vey from Enterprise Hold­ings found that nearly seven in 10 Amer­i­cans put in a full work­day (the equiv­a­lent of nine hours) on at least one week­end a month. The same sur­vey also noted that two-thirds of re­spon­dents felt their em­ploy­ers ex­pected them to work over the week­end.

your own neg­a­tive think­ing. Fo­cus on what you can ac­com­plish and plan time to re­lax, too.

Re­move your­self from the work en­vi­ron­ment

While it’s con­ve­nient to have an of­fice at home, it’s also very easy to fall into bad habits. You may think you’re just check­ing your email, send­ing a quick in­voice or writ­ing a to-do list for Mon­day, but you’re re­ally just open­ing the door to work.

As long as you are near your of­fice or see it, you may work when you don’t need to. Step away from work by leav­ing your home on a Sun­day to do some­thing dif­fer­ent, opt­ing for time with fam­ily, friends or your furry com­pan­ion.

Or, take the whole week­end away to de­com­press. That could in­clude check­ing out of so­cial me­dia, email, text mes­sages and mes­sag­ing plat­forms like Slack. You can even try a silent re­treat. When you do get away and re­mem­ber how good it feels, it can be­come eas­ier to stop think­ing about work.

Your work will al­ways wait for you, but life will pass you by if you don’t take part in it.

Set lim­its and re­train those around you

For free­lancers who cre­ate a flex­i­ble sched­ule, there are times when work on a Sun­day is nec­es­sary. But, if clients or em­ploy­ers see or hear from you over the week­end, then they they’ll ei­ther be an­noyed be­cause you’re cut­ting into their rest time, or as­sume it’s OK to con­tact you, even if you don’t plan on work­ing ev­ery Sun­day.

Rather than con­fuse them and frus­trate your­self, set lim­its and re­train those around you to still see the week­end as your time away from work. To do this, keep your chat avail­abil­ity set to “away.” Don’t an­nounce you are work­ing on those days. And, don’t cor­re­spond or send work out. In­stead, share your dig­i­tal cal­en­dar to your clients or em­ployer. It will show them what days you are tak­ing off, whether dur­ing the week or the week­end.

Plan for Mon­day on Fri­day

Part of the rea­son many peo­ple find them­selves work­ing on Sun­day is be­cause they want to pre­pare for the week ahead. They’re tempted to send out agen­das, emails, ques­tions or even new as­sign­ments on Sun­day night. Some­times that half-hour you thought you’d need turns into a few hours of work.

In­stead, cre­ate your Mon­day or full-week plan on Fri­day be­fore you step away from work. De­vote a halfhour to this. Use sched­ul­ing tools to write emails and mes­sages and de­liver them on Mon­day morn­ing. If you think about it, there’s no real rea­son to use Sun­day for this task in most cases when Fri­day works just fine. If you’re ef­fi­cient and fo­cused, you can get it done in 30 min­utes.

Ap­ply this thought to al­most any as­pect of work, and you’ll be one step closer to achiev­ing the bal­ance that Sun­days should be known for.


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