Weeks have this way of going by so fast that we don't really remember too many details of each of them. If there is something substantial that happens we may remember, but it's important to do our best to not let the weeks slip by, because those weeks become months, and then we look back and we haven't really remembered most of the year!
This week if you're up for the challenge I want you to walk through the week with new eyes, consciously trying to remember details of the week. Taking a step back and moving one day at a time. Self-Care is such an important part of being consciously in the week.
Bonus Self-Care: Let's also add another step in the mix and track your mood throughout the week. I really like doing this because it gives me a small moment each day to look back and see how I acted each day. Was I grateful today, did I let the stresses of life get to me too much, was I just neutral today, or was I truly happy today?
Let's take a week together to have a self care week:
I want to start with Sunday because I feel so many of us feel that the week starts with Monday, but it's important to prepare before going into work. And if you have a work schedule where Monday isn't your "Monday" then shift this to be whatever your second day in the week off is!
On Sunday do something that replenished your energy (see this post for some detailed tips). Do something that makes you feel rested. For some that could be hanging out with friends or family, and for some it could be an escape to the mountains or beach. The goal of this day is to help your mind be prepared for the week. Also, eat well. Do two days of meal prep for either lunches or dinners, this way during the first section of your week you don't have to even think about what you're going to eat for dinner, you already have planned ahead and know you're set up for success.
Get up early and get to work ten minutes early. Use those ten minutes to your advantage. If you work in a highly computer based job, use those ten minutes to do the first scan of your schedule for the day and print it off. I've found that so helpful to not jump directly into emails but make sure my mind knows where I need to be throughout the day. If you need to change into a uniform, use that time to relax into your shift as opposed to rushing and already feeling stressed even before you start.
When you get home, eat your dinner you've preplanned without looking at your phone. Have you ever gotten that app that shows you how many times you unlock your phone in a day? It's a scary app to get my friend!
Take your time eating and enjoy your food. Read a book, or watch TV without also searching online. I can promise you you'll find new lines from your favorite show that you didn't remember.
What are your plans for the weekend coming up? Start planning now so that you have something to look forward to throughout the week. Your mind is most excited when you have two future plans or trips planned. this way when you're doing one you also know you have another coming up. For me: This month I have three different friends coming to visit, so after one leaves I still know there are exciting trips ahead and more adventures to come!
By this time your meal prep is getting low. Take tonight and cook something, while taking on the phone figuring out what you're up to this weekend. I'be been obsessed with street tacos recently!! You really can never go wrong with a good street taco recipe!!
Do a mask before bed. It does not matter if you're male or female, a good mask before bed really does make a difference for your skin. You've made it half way though the work week and you should celebrate that! Also, doing something small that makes you feel pampered will make you feel like you're taking care of yourself. I love a “sleep” geared lotion! Something that is meant to help me sleep more sound, or something that smells just so wonderful and relaxing!
Set a timer for twenty minutes and clean your home. Put on your favorite Pandora station and clean up. If your home is organized your stress levels will also stay lower, trust me on this, I've tried it both ways. Having your home as your escape and haven from the world is so important. Plus if you've been given the blessing to be able to afford a roof over your head, no matter how many square feet, it's important to be a good stuard of it.
Thursday (it's not Friday but you're so close!)
Go grocery shopping after work. "Why would I do that Joy, that's what the weekend is for?"
I'm glad you asked! Who loves to fight the crowds on Saturday morning or who wants to grocery shop on Sunday afternoon? No-one, that's who. Get the chore done today so that your weekend is truly a weekend. By this time in the week, your home is clean, and once your fridge is restocked all you have to do this weekend is the fun things you want to as opposed to what chores you "have" to do!
You did it!! I'm so proud of you. It's the last day of work before relaxing/ doing your side hustle. The world is your oyster. If you love every second of your job or you can't wait for 5pm every Friday, it's important to take a weekend. You'll actually be more productive at work throughout the week if you give your mind this time to think of something besides work.
Go out after work with friends and get a drink, or go out for ice cream at night. Something that puts your mind at ease and allows you to laugh!! Laughter is so important to mental health, and as adults we don't do it nearly as much as we should. Do a game night, or go to a throwback night at the bar. Something where you're laughing and hanging with people who you enjoy.
The world is your oyster my friend. You've cleaned and done grocery shopping. You probably have some laundry to do, but that's about it.
Get yourself a cup of coffee at your favorite coffee shop and relax! See a movie, host a movie night, eat some good food, and see the sun!
So, how did you do? Did you make it through the entire week or did you pick the days you need help with the most? Either way if you've even made one step in the "self-care" direction, this post was worth it!