The weekend is your chance to breathe and relax. You likely won’t have any work, so you look forward to those two days off all week. However, you shouldn’t discount the evenings you spend at home before bed. Even if all you do is catch up on chores, you can make those hours count and do something enjoyable. If stress is the main cause of you not enjoying your life to the fullest, you should find something that makes you happy during weeknights.
1. Treat Yourself to Something Small
You may need a treat to keep yourself motivated when work feels difficult. It doesn’t always have to cost something. Plenty of self-care activities can lower your stress, like spending time outside in the sunlight and resetting your focus by putting your brain at rest for a little while.
No matter how tiny, a reward can keep you moving forward when life feels too stressful to continue. A reward halfway through the week can encourage you to slow down and take each day at a time — not just suddenly rush to the weekend finish line. You might even mix up which day gets the reward to keep yourself on your toes.
2. Learn the Importance of Play
Playtime isn’t just for kids. You deserve an opportunity to let your energy out and promote your well-being. Playing allows you to burn your energy constructively while having fun and gets you closer to the recommended 150 minutes of weekly exercise. Having something enjoyable to look forward to, whether physically or mentally challenging, can make getting through your day easier.
3. Do Something Creative Every Day
You need an outlet to help you regulate your stress and emotions if you don’t have the opportunity to be creative in your day job. Self-care can be an amazing help, but you might need a little extra push to feel like yourself and not waste those hours after work.
Partaking in some creative project can cheer you up and help you feel like you accomplished something outside of work. You just need to find an activity to help you feel most at ease.
Painting is a great way for some people to get their emotions out. You might enjoy creating a mood board to express your feelings and hopes, a reminder of what you’re working toward. Experiment with a few creative options to see what you’re drawn to.
4. Designate Each Night for Something Fun
Doesn’t everything seem so much more fun when it has a theme? Theming nights in your household can make you anticipate the hours between work and sleep. For example, you can designate Monday as pasta night, Tuesday as movie night and so on.
You’ll always have something to look forward to — especially if you mix it up and change the days. Maybe after two weeks of a pasta night, you’ll switch to a pizza night. Keep your plans flexible — that’s what makes life fun!
5. Plan for the Next Week Early
Take a step back and evaluate your life. Do you feel very organized? While organization might be tedious, it’s OK to take a “life admin day” one evening to prepare yourself for the week ahead. This activity might be something to look forward to if you like planning. Even if this week isn’t turning out how you want it to, you can build fun things into the next.
Spontaneity and flexibility are fun, but you should have a general idea of your schedule for the upcoming week. That way, no responsibilities will creep up on you and stress you out. A planner can help you keep track of your obligations, and you can use it on a device or opt for a paper one — whichever works best for your organization style. Don’t forget to have fun with it and decorate your planner in a way that makes you happy.
Make the Most of Your Weeknights
It can be challenging to indulge in anything fun when you know you must wake up early and go to work the next day. Still, though a weeknight isn’t as fun as a weekend, you’ll make the most of it by trying new things and rewarding yourself when possible.
Make each day a small celebration. That way, you may feel more motivated to remain in the present instead of wishing your days away. You have plenty of hours after work to unwind and do something that makes you happy to be alive — so take advantage of it now and don’t just live for the weekend.
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