[Part 3] 6 Ways to Get the Most Out of Your Weekends

This is the final installment in the Productivity Series. The first two installments, 6 Elements of an Effective Morning Routine and 6 Tips for Beating the Afternoon Slump can be applied Monday through Friday.

If you’ve been practicing those tips, which I know you have been, you might think that you deserve the weekend to slack off after such a productive workweek, right?

Wrong!

It may be tempting to use the weekend to do absolutely nothing but be a bum on the sofa and binge-watch your favorite tv shows on the DVR. But doing so actually halts your productivity and interrupts the momentum you’ve built by being on top of it all week.

So how can you get the most of out of your weekends so that you don’t miss a beat? Here are 6 ways:

  1.   Resist the urge to sleep in- Try to wake up around the same time that you normally wake up during the week. If you must get up a little later, don’t sleep past two hours of when you normally wake up. By sleeping in, your body rhythm is knocked out of whack and it is that much harder to get up at your usual time on Monday morning. Besides, the earlier you wake, the more day you have left to enjoy your weekend and get things done.
  2. Work out- Hopefully you’ve been exercising throughout the week. If you have, the weekend is not the time to take a break. Remain in the habit of moving your body. Use the weekend to take advantage of activities that you wouldn’t normally have time for during the week, such as taking a class at the gym, a bike ride or even a long walk.
  3. Spend time with family and friends- As busy professionals, a lot of times our family and friends are pushed to the backburner during the week. Use the weekend to reconnect with them. Maybe even establish traditions such as a regular date night with your spouse, a big family dinner on Sunday or weekly meeting for brunch or drinks to catch up with friends.
  4. Volunteer- Anne Frank once said, “No one has ever become poor by giving.” Get involved with your local community by volunteering with your church, a charity or cause of your choice. You’re not only enriching someone else’s life, but your own as well.
  5. Plan to relax- There’s nothing wrong with catching up with your favorite tv shows or having downtime when there’s nothing for you to do. The problem occurs when it’s not planned and you spend the whole weekend lounging and before you know it, it’s Sunday night and you’re dreading getting up in the morning. If you want to take a nap during the day, set your alarm. If you just want to channel surf, commit to doing it only a couple of hours so you don’t look up and the weekend has passed you by.
  6. Reflect on the past week and plan for the week ahead- A lot of times one day just goes into the next and we never stop and assess what we're doing and how we can be better. So pause and reflect on the past week. Ask yourself the following questions: What did I get done and complete? What did I do well? What can I improve? Use your Sunday afternoon or evenings to plan your week ahead. Meal prep all of your meals so you don’t have to think about it. Schedule out things that are due, places needed to go, people you need to connect with, etc. Planning ahead sets the tone for your entire week and makes your Monday mornings so much more bearable.

Have any other tips for getting the most out of your weekend? Let me know in the comments below.

Well, that’s it for the Productivity Series. I hope this has helped you get more structure and make the most of your days. When we have good days, we have good weeks. When we have good weeks, we have good months. When we have good months, we have good years.