People often write off Sunday as a nothing day. While some attend church in the morning, most spend at least part of the day doing very little. It’s important to rest up on the weekends and take time to relax. However, using your Sunday correctly allows you to set yourself up for a wonderful week.
Saturday can be a day for fun and seeing friends. But weekly planning can be a key tool to help you have an enjoyable, stress-free and healthy week. While Monday starts the work week, Sunday is the first day of the week and is the perfect time to make a weekly plan.
How often do you ask, “Where did this week go?” on a Friday? Weekly planning makes you more productive and helps you save time in the long run. If you take time on Sunday to write a clear plan for the week, you can focus on your goals, cut out distractions and stop yourself from becoming overwhelmed.
The first step is to consider your goals for the week. Simply writing out tasks isn’t as effective as starting with your big goals. Yes, going grocery shopping and remembering your doctor’s appointments are important. But do you want to clean out the pantry or coat closet or exercise more? If you have a goal in mind, you can break that goal into smaller tasks that you can achieve more easily and schedule. Having measurable goals can give your week a sense of achievement.
In addition to considering your goals, it’s important to know your priorities. Even the best planning in the world can’t account for everyday mishaps. Things derail schedules all the time. Know what is a “must do” on your list and prioritize it so that, come next Sunday, it isn’t still on your list because it got lost in the shuffle.
Finally, come the next Sunday, review last Sunday’s plan. Consider where you met your goals and where you let things slip. Reassess what matters to you and if something really was a priority. Maybe something didn’t get done because you didn’t care about it. On the other hand, it might be an unpleasant task that you put off. In that case, do it on Monday and get it out of the way! Use last week’s schedule to recalibrate the next week’s.
Writing a plan is so helpful is that it helps you avoid “decision fatigue.” Over the course of a day, you make around 35,000 choices. And 225 are just about food. If you sit down with a fresh mind on Sunday morning and map out your days and meals for the week, you don’t have to make those choices later. You can buy and prep food later in the day and have the week flow easily around you. Then, come Wednesday, you won’t be feeling guilty while ordering take-out. The ingredients for your meal will already be in your fridge!
Part of meal planning on Sunday is looking through your fridge, freezer and pantry. This can help you decide what you want to make based on what you already have. That saves you time at the store, prevents food waste and saves you money. Then you can build your grocery list, so you don’t have to wander around the store making decisions. You can use the weekly circular to know the best deals at the grocery store and build your menu from there.
Other things to do on Sunday as part of your planning are your laundry and picking out your clothes for the week. Picking out your clothes on Sunday helps you save time in the morning and stops you from worrying if you need an outfit to go out and meet people. It’s already done; you can start each day with one less choice!
After planning your week, if you aren’t retired, make a start on any errands you can. If you’re retired, doing chores during the day is easy. If you work, running errands after a long day is stressful. It takes away from necessary relaxation time in the evening. Make a routine of going to the pharmacy on Sundays or vacuuming. It can turn them into regular habits.
Have some quiet time on Sunday to do nothing. Journalling or sitting and watching the world go by can be a good way to gather your thoughts and prepare yourself for the week ahead while decompressing from the week you have had. Sunday is a day of rest. Meditation or prayer can be a wonderful way to help ease stress, calm down and focus on what matters to you.