It is vital to plan for the week ahead. There’s nothing worse than waking up on a Monday morning, already feeling behind and unprepared! (if you’d like to become a more organised person, sign up to my list for access to golden nuggets of information)
However, I try to reduce what I have to do on a Sunday as much as possible. I want Sundays to feel like a well-deserved relaxed day rather than cramming them with chores.
So, there are a number of things I recommend doing on a FRIDAY in order to ensure you get the following week off to a good start:
- If you’ll need help for the week ahead, ask for it on a Friday rather than the Sunday night/Monday. As the weekend approaches, people will be in a more relaxed frame of mind and more generous too! They will also have more time to accommodate your request.
- Friday is a good day to finish routine tasks as you begin to wind down for the weekend. Things like physical and digital filing, invoicing/paying bills, actions from meetings, syncing devices and deleting out of date information on your phone.
- If you have a work bag or children with school bags, be sure to deal with these on Friday afternoon. Identify any paperwork which needs to be actioned, remove lunchboxes and drinks and general rubbish or unnecessary receipts. Whilst you’re at it, you might as well re-pack the bag for the following Monday if you use a specific one for
work or school.
Of course, good organisation and planning relies on fostering small habits ALL WEEK. Keeping on top on things really is key to feeling calm and in control. So here are my tips on what you should aim to do EVERY DAY:
- Wash, dry and put away clothes daily. Many people succeed in doing the first two but fall down at the final hurdle! Spend 10 minutes putting dry clothes away daily and you’ll make it feel like just another small task to build into your day.
- If you cook a meal from scratch, make an extra portion or two and freeze. I find this far easier than batch cooking and freezing on a Sunday (almost no-one consistently does this)
- Lay out your clothes for the next day (including underwear and accessories!) You can’t under estimate the feeling this gives you the next day – simply taking away a few decisions means you start the day with more energy in your bank.
- Carry out a ’10 minute tidy’ each evening before you go to bed. Return items to their proper home, ensure the washing up is done, bins taken out and kitchen surfaces wiped down.
- Set your alarm for a realistic time. Work out what time you need to leave the house and what you need to do before you leave. Leave yourself plenty of time for breakfast and maybe a bit of relaxation time – you want to start the day refreshed not stressed.
- Pack your bag the night before. Ensure you have the right things with you for the day ahead (items to post, vouchers, exercise clothes, food, water, shopping list, addresses, items to return etc)
- Put your things by the door – plus a note on the door to remind you to take food from the fridge for example. There’s nothing worse than carefully laid items being left on the kitchen table so placing them by the door is the safest option.
There is a certain amount of preparation that should take place on a Sunday, so when it does come around, what should you do to ensure you get the following week off to a flying start? Here are my top tips:
- Check your diary ( I love a week to view diary to see the whole week at a glance). Ensure you haven’t double booked anything and that you have given yourself enough leeway for travel time etc. Balance is the key to a happy and valuable week – do you have a mix of work, socialising, family time, exercise and time to switch off? If you have gaps, ask yourself what meaningful activity you can plan to ensure you use the time effectively.
- Make a plan for the week ahead. The simple act of writing down tasks will firstly steer your subconscious towards the weeks goals and secondly direct your focus on what needs to be achieved, especially when you find your mind wandering or you find you’re spending your time non-productively. You plan can be anything from a few bullet points to a full table detailing how you will spend your time, hour by hour.
- Meal plan for next week. This may involve doing a recce of the cupboards, filling out an online shop or writing a list for a supermarket trip. Have an idea of what you will eat during the next week and you’ll make healthier choices as well as save money.
- Create a ‘power hour’ in which to do small tasks in readiness for the week ahead. Things like wrapping presents, writing cards, filling out forms, planning journeys, gathering items to return to a friend – knocking these things off the list will make for a far less stressful week!
- Change the bedding. There’s something very pleasant and comforting about fresh sheets on a Sunday night – you might even sleep better! NB don’t change the towels at the same time (you’ll be overrun with washing), do this mid-week instead.
- This is the most important point of all – fill your Sunday (and as much of your weekend as possible) with high value, recharging activities. It doesn’t matter whether you spend the time in front of the TV or packed with activities involving family or friends – as long as you have decided with intention what you are doing is truly feeding your soul.