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How to Hack Your Weekend

How to Hack Your Weekend


    We’re all tired once the workday ends on Friday. All we want to do is go home and get our weekend started, forgetting about what we need to do at teh office until we return on Monday.

    But how often do we have a weekend where we are free to do what we want – and not what we need to do?

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    Think about it. You get home on a Friday night, sit down to have some dinner and then chill out for the rest of the evening. Then you get up the next day and there’s chores to do, errands to run and more of that kind of stuff that breaks up your weekend into smaller bits, never really getting a moment to revel in the time you have off.

    I think it’s high time we star to hack our weekend. And here’s how you can do it.

    1. Don’t Come Home Right Away on Friday

    Make Friday really busy. Go grocery shopping before you come home from work – even if that means that on Fridays you either eat a late dinner or go out to eat. Get the stuff out of the way that you know needs to be taken care of (and has no set time when you have to do so) before you settle in at home for the night.

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    You’re giving yourself – and your weekend – a real headstart that way.

    2. Make Friday Night Your Laundry Night

    When you do get home, put some of the laundry in, preferably items that can sit overnight in the dryer just in case you either can’t – or don’t want to – get to them before bedtime.

    If it’s early enough, start with the clothes that you know you’ll see through to completion, but make towels and bedding the stuff you do last. You can also let some of the permanent press clothes hang dry (make sure they’re only slightly damp, though) overnight and let nature do its thing while you sleep.

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    3. Set Aside Time for Nothingness

    If you have errands to run or appointments to take care of on Saturday or Sunday, limit the blocks of time you’re willing to commit to those. That may mean that mornings on both days are when you take care of any of that stuff that works for you (or your family, if you have one).

    Either way, schedule time blocks and stick to them for these kinds of things so that you can better revel in the nothingness your body and mind needs while you’re off work for a couple of days.

    4. Map Out Chores During the Work Week

    While Fridays are the days where you stay out to get certain things done, make the rest of your work week evenings the time when you get the chores around the house taken care of.

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    Sure, things like mowing the lawn and gardening may not be practical for these moments, but cleaning the bathroom, vacuuming and indoor chores are more than possible tasks that you can do before hitting the sack on weekdays – rather than sitting in front of the television like a sack instead.

    5. Get Out of Town

    One of the best ways you can hack your weekend is to actually get out of town during it. That way you’re not distracted by what you’re normally surrounded by, but can be in an environment that will allow you to better enjoy the weekend.

    And it doesn’t have to be limited to summer activities, either. Any simple getaway can be handled with proper planning – land that planning can be done during those scheduled time blocks I mentioned earlier. Getting away while you can is a phenomenal way to prepare yourself for when you return to work on Monday.

    Unless you start your work week on a Sunday, that is.

    (Photo credit: Wood Chopper on the Stub via Shutterstock)

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    Mike Vardy

    A productivity specialist who shows you how to define your day, funnel your focus, and make every moment matter.

    4 Simple Steps to Brain Dump for a Smarter Brain Why Is Productivity Important? 10 Reasons to Become More Productive Get What Matters Done by Scheduling Time Blocks The Ultimate Way to get to Inbox Zero How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

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    Last Updated on March 13, 2019

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

    You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

    Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

    1. Work on the small tasks.

    When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

    Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

    2. Take a break from your work desk.

    Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

    Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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    3. Upgrade yourself

    Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

    The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

    4. Talk to a friend.

    Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

    Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

    5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

    If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

    Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

    Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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    6. Paint a vision to work towards.

    If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

    Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

    Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

    7. Read a book (or blog).

    The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

    Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

    Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

    8. Have a quick nap.

    If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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    9. Remember why you are doing this.

    Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

    What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

    10. Find some competition.

    Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

    Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

    11. Go exercise.

    Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

    Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

    As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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    Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

    12. Take a good break.

    Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

    Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

    Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

    Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

    More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

    Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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