I have been reading the ‘What the most successful people do’ series by Laura Vanderkam. I just finished ‘What the most successful people do on the weekend’ and it has definitely motivated me to make-over our families weekends. Laura talks about how there are sixty hours in total from Friday evening to Monday morning. You will roughly be asleep for twenty-four of those hours but that still leaves thirty-six whole hours to fill however you may like – which is the equivalent of an almost full-time job. She also discusses how we need to not take our weekends for granted that we have with our children or even during each fleeting season – they go by far too quickly so we need to make sure that we are making the most of each one!
Here are five tips that I have enjoyed from her book:
1. Have a rough plan in place before the weekend. It is all too easy to have your weekend eaten up by late starts, children’s sports and activities, or even endless events. Just because you get invited out to something does not mean you should always go. We need to make sure that we are consciously choosing how we will spend our time off. Currently, I have a note on Thursday to remind me to plan our weekend it really helps me to think about it in advance. Laura also discusses how anticipation is half of the fun and we need to be building anticipation of future excitement to help fuel our everyday routines during the weekdays.
2. Don’t vege out! Some relaxing may be necessary but all too quickly your weekend can turn into a Netflix or sports game marathon without achieving any else of real value for your life. Even though we need to take a break from work we still need to make sure that we are doing stimulating, interesting activities that will enrich our lives.
3. Set strict rules around weekend work. In our ever-connected world, it is so easy to continue working throughout the weekend or even to be checking email. Sometimes this is unavoidable but I think it helps to have clear rules in place for weekend work. Often we can be far more productive when we take a break from working and allow our minds to be refreshed. Last weekend our family started ‘screen-free Sunday’s’ – no screens until 3pm which worked quite well. We went out to the Farmers market and then for a long bike ride to a really cool kids playground that we had never been to before.
4. Get excited! Start a list of all of the fun things you would love to do on the weekend. Pick one new exciting thing to do each weekend and make sure you prepare in advance – organise what time you will do it, what equipment/gear you might need, who you will do it with. Laura suggested an exercise which involved making a list of 100 dreams to get your brain thinking outside of its usual box!
5. Set key anchor events throughout the weekend. I think this is really important take away from her book. She discusses the main anchor points as being Friday night, Saturday day, Saturday night, Sunday day and Sunday night. Each weekend ideally you will have 3-5 things planned for these key anchor points. As always when we plan we need to think about nurturing all of our relationships. So we might want to plan something that is just for ourselves, something just with our partner or children if we have them and then something with our friends or extended family.
How do you like to nurture your relationships on the weekend?
(Photo: Abigail Lynn)