Try not to resent me for saying this, but I actually don’t completely hate Mondays. In all fairness though, I’m probably writing this far too soon. I’ve just started a new job (here at DDIY!) and everything is still fresh and exciting. So even though I’m not as organised as usual, I’m in the honeymoon stage and I kind of look forward to getting up on Monday mornings, not knowing exactly what challenge is in store for me.
That said, I’m no stranger to the Monday blues. During my days as a student, every Monday felt like a hangover after spending the weekend writing essays in between working a part-time job. There’s just something about starting Monday off on the wrong foot that has you feeling like you have to run to catch up for the rest of the week. Eventually, I realised I needed to develop some healthier habits so that I wouldn’t fall behind on my work and be miserable each week. Here are five tips that have made a difference in my life.
Prep for Monday on Friday
. Everyone wants to clock out early on a Friday, but resist the urge unless you’ve completed all your tasks for the week. Whatever you don’t do this week is just going to pile on top of next week’s tasks, which will just make your Monday doubly stressful. Try to get as much done as possible so that you start the following week on a clean slate. You should also start writing your to-do list and updating your calendar for the following week, and organise your desk and leave it tidy before you leave the office.
Don’t take your work home with you.
The odd weekend work task might be unavoidable, but certainly not every weekend. If you don’t let yourself relax, you’re never going to be able to start the following week refreshed and happy. Leave your work at the office, and don’t even think about checking your E-mail. Use the weekend to live a little and sleep a lot!
Start Monday on Sunday.
Yes, I know, I just told you no work on the weekends (and I meant it). I’m not suggesting that you actually work on a Sunday, but just spend thirty minutes to an hour updating your to-do list. I started doing this in my student days and I’ve managed to stick with it because it honestly makes the world of difference. Try going to bed a bit earlier than usual on a Sunday too. I have to confess, I still struggle with this one. Choosing between whether I want to be bright and perky on a Monday or spend the whole night watching series is always a tough one.
Start your Monday morning with something that makes you happy
. Maybe it’s a cappuccino from your favourite café, a doughnut run on the way to work or a catch-up with your friends… Whatever it is that makes you happy, do it first thing so that you start your week on a positive note, even if it’s just something small, like listening to your favourite song when you wake up. Doing little things that brighten your day isn’t just for Mondays though. Make a plan to do at least one thing you love every week, whether it’s a movie night, lunch date, or dinner. Having something to look forward to will keep you going.
Ease into the week.
If you know you’re usually a bit slower on Mondays, try to keep the first day of the week a bit lighter than the rest, by scheduling your more difficult tasks for the following days. Arrange your week so that meetings don’t take place until Tuesday, allowing you some breathing room to get back into the flow of work after the weekends.
Admittedly, I don’t always take my own advice, and some Mondays still leave me feeling majorly stressed out. But when I do make just a little bit of an effort to follow the tips above, the week is just so much more effortless.
Want some more advice? Try reading this article by Forbes, which has some great insight.