Depending on your day to day responsibilities, you’ve probably had a tried and tested Sunday routine that worked for you in the past. However, home working has become more permanent than we may have initially thought, and what may have been our usual Sunday routines may have been disrupted or thrown away for the foreseeable future. Having a Sunday routine may not seem like much on the surface, but it’s important to use this day to relax, work through things you may need done and all in all, prepare both mentally and physically for the new work week ahead of you. Having a routine is one thing that can help you feel better about lockdown and the current home working situation a lot of us seem to be stuck in. So, if you have lost touch with your routine, we have some reasons why you should adopt a new one or even go back to your old habits.
Why have a routine?
A routine is usually made up of different things for different people. Some people like to have a busy Sunday and get things ready for the week ahead and others like to take the time to relax and unwind, also a good way of getting ready for the full-on week ahead. Depending on what kind of person you are, spending your Sunday doing whatever makes you feel relaxed and prepared can result in a more productive and successful time at work the following day. For me personally, having a Sunday routine never really occurred to me before lockdown. I would go about my day, running errands and seeing whoever was available that day. There was never really any planning that went into it and at the end of the day, I’d sit down on the sofa and wonder where all the time had gone, dreading the week ahead.
I’m sure we can all agree that sometimes 2 days just doesn’t feel like enough and some weekends you just need more time! However, by taking a second to think about and plan what you want to do, even if you’re still busy, you can finish the day feeling more productive and happier with how you have spent your time off. Once you are able to get into a rhythm and find a routine that works for you, work with it and switch it up when you need too. A misconception of ‘routine’ is that it is fixed, and you do the same thing over and over. When really, it’s about making the most of your time and helping you feel like you’ve accomplished something.
What should you think about putting into your routine?
Treat yourself to that slow Sunday morning – Sometimes, we all need that lay-in. Not all of us can manage to do this every Sunday, but being busy and fast paced all the time, isn’t the best way to live. You need to give your body a break and taking it slow can help you feel more relaxed.
Take time for self-care – Self care is something that we can all slip up on and forget about time to time. Especially if we have other commitments in our lives that take over. But every now and again, make sure you fit in some time for yourself. This could be a lone walk, time to read a book or even getting some time to play your favourite game with no disruptions. Self-care is different for everyone, it’s not always as simple as doing a face mask, it’s all about the things you enjoy for relaxation.
Have you thought about meal prep? – Now we’re working at home all of the time, meal prep and dinner ideas have probably gone out of the window. I know mine did. The idea of being home all the time means we would have time to make a nice fresh lunch, right? This is obviously not possible every day because there are times when we get caught up with our work. Try and think about your meals and make sure you are getting the nutrition you need at lunch time. Make sure you’re actually taking a lunch break as well!
Task planning for the week ahead – One of the worst things about a Sunday evening is worrying about all of the work you have to do for the week ahead. So, address this. Get your notebook and a pen and start listing all of the things you have to do next week. You don’t have to put them in any particular order or even start the work, but by doing this small task, it frees up all that space in your mind to think about other things. The stress of thinking about work on a Sunday evening happens to everyone, but it can affect how you feel Monday morning.
Clean up a bit – When I say clean, I don’t necessarily mean your whole home. But make sure your workspace, whereever that may be, has been decluttered ready for work in the morning. I find that there is nothing worse than starting work or your job search on a Monday and having to go through all your notes and mess from Friday.
Positive thinking – This one probably sounds like a bit of a cliché, however, panicking or worrying about your to do list on a Sunday evening isn’t going to help you. Whether you are working or job seeking, it can wait until the morning. Worrying and negative emotions can affect your sleeping pattern which is why some people really struggle to sleep well enough ready for Monday. If you’re still feeling negative about the week ahead, before you go to bed, write about your successes from the past week. What have you achieved and what do you want to achieve in your job search or work? This is a more positive way of looking at things.
Covid-19 has really affected a lot of people and their way of living. Working from home can leave you with the inability to separate between your personal life and your work life. Being able to have these little parts of each day, (doesn’t have to just be Sunday) can allow you to separate the two worlds and start to relax in your own home again. I find that if you can, have a separate room for your work things or if not, pack them away. Having a routine can affect people in very positive ways, so maybe it’s time to think about starting a new one and see if it helps you become a happier person in both work and when ‘at home’.