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5 Ways to Make Your Weekends Happier

5 Ways to Make Your Weekends Happier

Weekends are a brief, magical period where anything goes. How you spend all of those 48 hours is completely up to you. However, some people feel paralyzed by a total lack of structure and end up lounging away all weekend, binge-watching entire TV seasons on Netflix or watching their dog drag its butt across the carpet. Don’t be a bump on a log! Consider one of these five ways to make your weekends happier.

Exercise Your Body (and Imagination) Outdoors

You’ve probably heard this all before: Go outside, experience nature, get some sunshine, and work out. Let’s take it to another level and give your mind a healthy stretch, too. Grab a portable music player and make a playlist of some of the most epic music you have. Think movie and video game soundtracks, orchestral masterpieces, or whatever else inspires motivation and vigor. The idea here is to make physical outdoor exercise more accessible and interesting.

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You could be a hero sprinting to glory through a war-torn battlefield, a puma hunting in a dense jungle, or the lone survivor escaping a horde of zombies. Whatever your fantasy, live it. You’re allowing your mind to escape the rigors of the weekdays while simultaneously strengthening your body and spirit.

Have Some Extra Time in Bed

Your bed is your very own sacred place for meditation, reflection, and relaxation. When you wake up in the morning, swim through the sheets and realize the entire vicinity of your mattress is yours and yours alone. No one is going to bother you here; no one can take that space of private isolation from you (unless you’re with a lover).

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Allow your thoughts to wander as you sort out the week’s events consciously and subconsciously. The peace of mind and lack of distractions can help you recharge your mental batteries.You could also escape into your own little world and watch some TV on your laptop or tablet thanks to FiOS tv service from Verizon. Don’t waste your day lying in bed, however; just spend a little extra time enjoying the comfort, like you want to do all week but aren’t able to.

Spend Time with Family and Friends

What is happiness? What is success? Can these things be measured by material matters such as the size of your house or price of your car? Or are you more likely to find the feeling of life satisfaction knowing you’re part of a community of people who love and care for one another? “A successful person is usually one who has achieved a measure of happiness and fulfillment in their work, family, and spiritual life (however that is defined for the individual),” executive coach Dale Kurrow says, “most successful people need to feel a sense of accomplishment and are self-motivated to tackle the next challenge.” Leave your weekday life behind and focus on friends and family.

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Pursue a Hobby

Day in and day out, day in and day out—weekdays are a drag. Routines can start to wear on even the most fortuitous minds. Having some sort of hobby, no matter how obscure, can be a great way for you to shake off the dust of monotony that settles on your brain five days a week. Hobbies, whether they’re based in logic or creativity, allow your brain to wander leisurely down curious avenues of thought while flexing your ability to think critically and perceive patterns.

Playing Sudoku, the piano, or volleyball are some pretty good options. Hobbies are like yoga for your brain; they help create more “flexible” thought patterns than can be used to solve complex problems in the future. Plus they’re an excellent outlet for stress.

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Plan For the Week Ahead

Your work week is probably going to be full of assignments, deadlines, and a million people hounding you to get something done. Be proactive during the weekend and schedule a list of things you know you’ll need to tackle in the days ahead. It’ll save you a world of headaches down the road.

Weekends are a great time to get things done, escape the world around you, or spend time with friends and family. Whatever you do, make sure you don’t waste them

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Last Updated on November 19, 2019

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

Are you usually punctual or late? Do you finish things within the time you stipulate? Do you hand in your reports/work on time? Are you able to accomplish what you want to do before deadlines? Are you a good time manager?

If your answer is “no” to any of the questions above, that means you’re not managing your time as well as you want. Here are 20 time management tips to help you manage time better:

1. Create a Daily Plan

Plan your day before it unfolds. Do it in the morning or even better, the night before you sleep. The plan gives you a good overview of how the day will pan out. That way, you don’t get caught off guard. Your job for the day is to stick to the plan as best as possible.

2. Peg a Time Limit to Each Task

Be clear that you need to finish X task by 10am, Y task by 3pm, and Z item by 5:30pm. This prevents your work from dragging on and eating into time reserved for other activities.

3. Use a Calendar

Having a calendar is the most fundamental step to managing your daily activities. If you use outlook or lotus notes, calendar come as part of your mailing software.

I use it. It’s even better if you can sync your calendar to your mobile phone and other hardwares you use – that way, you can access your schedule no matter where you are. Here’re the 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track .

Find out more tips about how to use calendar for better time management here: How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

4. Use an Organizer

An organizer helps you to be on top of everything in your life. It’s your central tool to organize information, to-do lists, projects, and other miscellaneous items.

These Top 15 Time Management Apps and Tools can help you organize better, pick one that fits your needs.

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5. Know Your Deadlines

When do you need to finish your tasks? Mark the deadlines out clearly in your calendar and organizer so you know when you need to finish them.

But make sure you don’t make these 10 Common Mistakes When Setting Deadlines.

6. Learn to Say “No”

Don’t take on more than you can handle. For the distractions that come in when you’re doing other things, give a firm no. Or defer it to a later period.

Leo Babauta, the founder of Zen Habits has some great insights on how to say no: The Gentle Art of Saying No

7. Target to Be Early

When you target to be on time, you’ll either be on time or late. Most of the times you’ll be late. However, if you target to be early, you’ll most likely be on time.

For appointments, strive to be early. For your deadlines, submit them earlier than required.

Learn from these tips about how to prepare yourself to be early, instead of just in time.

8. Time Box Your Activities

This means restricting your work to X amount of time. Why time boxing is good for you? Here’re 10 reasons why you should start time-boxing.

You can also read more about how to do time boxing here: #5 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity.

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9. Have a Clock Visibly Placed Before You

Sometimes we are so engrossed in our work that we lose track of time. Having a huge clock in front of you will keep you aware of the time at the moment.

10. Set Reminders 15 Minutes Before

Most calendars have a reminder function. If you have an important meeting to attend, set that alarm 15 minutes before.

You can learn more about how reminders help you remember everything in this article: The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

11. Focus

Are you multi-tasking so much that you’re just not getting anything done? If so, focus on just one key task at one time. Multitasking is bad for you.

Close off all the applications you aren’t using. Close off the tabs in your browser that are taking away your attention. Focus solely on what you’re doing. You’ll be more efficient that way.

Lifehack’s CEO has written a definitive guide on how to focus, learn the tips: How to Focus and Maximize Your Productivity (the Definitive Guide)

12. Block out Distractions

What’s distracting you in your work? Instant messages? Phone ringing? Text messages popping in?

I hardly ever use chat nowadays. The only times when I log on is when I’m not intending to do any work. Otherwise it gets very distracting.

When I’m doing important work, I also switch off my phone. Calls during this time are recorded and I contact them afterward if it’s something important. This helps me concentrate better.

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Find more tips on how to minimize distractions to achieve more in How to Minimize Distraction to Get Things Done

13. Track Your Time Spent

When you start to track your time, you’re more aware of how you spend your time. For example, you can set a simple countdown timer to make sure that you finish a task within a period of time, say 30 minutes or 1 hour. The time pressure can push you to stay focused and work more efficiently.

You can find more time tracking apps here and pick one that works for you.

14. Don’t Fuss About Unimportant Details

You’re never get everything done in exactly the way you want. Trying to do so is being ineffective.

Trying to be perfect does you more harm than good, learn here about how perfectionism kills your productivity and how to ditch the perfectionism mindset.

15. Prioritize

Since you can’t do everything, learn to prioritize the important and let go of the rest.

Apply the 80/20 principle which is a key principle in prioritization. You can also take up this technique to prioritize everything on your plate: How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

16. Delegate

If there are things that can be better done by others or things that are not so important, consider delegating. This takes a load off and you can focus on the important tasks.

When you delegate some of your work, you free up your time and achieve more. Learn about how to effectively delegate works in this guide: How to Delegate Work (the Definitive Guide for Successful Leaders)

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17. Batch Similar Tasks Together

For related work, batch them together.

For example, my work can be categorized into these core groups:

  1. writing (articles, my upcoming book)
  2. coaching
  3. workshop development
  4. business development
  5. administrative

I batch all the related tasks together so there’s synergy. If I need to make calls, I allocate a time slot to make all my calls. It really streamlines the process.

18. Eliminate Your Time Wasters

What takes your time away your work? Facebook? Twitter? Email checking? Stop checking them so often.

One thing you can do is make it hard to check them – remove them from your browser quick links / bookmarks and stuff them in a hard to access bookmarks folder. Replace your browser bookmarks with important work-related sites.

While you’ll still checking FB/Twitter no doubt, you’ll find it’s a lower frequency than before.

19. Cut off When You Need To

The number one reason why things overrun is because you don’t cut off when you have to.

Don’t be afraid to intercept in meetings or draw a line to cut-off. Otherwise, there’s never going to be an end and you’ll just eat into the time for later.

20. Leave Buffer Time In-Between

Don’t pack everything closely together. Leave a 5-10 minute buffer time in between each tasks. This helps you wrap up the previous task and start off on the next one.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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