Time moves different on Sundays, one minute you’re in bed enjoying a slow morning and then the next it’s nine o’clock at night and you’ve accomplished absolutely nothing. Most of us spend our Sundays regretting how quickly the weekend went and go to sleep feeling stressed and unprepared for the week ahead.
Allowing stress to build up goes far beyond starting your new week on a bad note, it has been proven to impact your physical and mental health by causing headaches, heartburn, rapid breathing, increase the risk of heart attack, tense muscles, high blood pressure, anxiety, and depression, to name a few side-effects.
So, take time to identify what is causing your stress and ways to cope with it. Stress is normal and inevitable, which is why self-care not only feels good but it’s necessary in order to live a balanced and healthy life. Here are some simple Sunday habits to embrace for a stress-free week:
Plan Out Your Week
Life can get hectic and stressful, and it’s important to stay on top of everything. Look ahead to that doctor’s visit, car service or any important meetings. Planning ahead instead hoping it all works out will always save stress in the long run. Apps like 24 Meor Remember The Milk are a great (and free) way to lay out your days, weeks, months, and stay efficient, all within a device you’re probably already carrying everywhere you go.
Write It Down, Don’t Type It
As convenient as it is to keep everything in a hand-held device, the good old pen-and-paper combo is still more effective. There is a lot more cognitive processing when you physically write something down as opposed to typing. Studies show you are more likely to remember things when you write them down, and writing down your feelings and worries is a good way to analyze your problems from a more objective perspective (no wonder why journals and planners are still so popular).
Plan What to Wear
Realistically, you don’t have time in your already-too-hectic morning to figure out what to wear for the day. Now that you’ve planned out your week, planning out your outfits will free up more time for breakfast, reading or meditating in the morning.
Make Time for Self Care
When life gets crazy we usually put ourselves on the back burner. The ways in which you care for yourself are unique to you and your personality, it can be as simple as reading a book, exercising, or listening to your favorite music. Developing healthy habits that you enjoy can improve your physical and emotional health in the long term. Taking time for yourself on Sundays eases the back-to-work feeling, so use this as a time to do something for you, so that next time you write “Happy Monday!” You actually mean it.
Plan Out Your Meals
Meal prepping isn’t for everybody, we get it. As convenient as it is, do you really want to be eating 5-day-old chicken for lunch on a Friday? The best next thing is to plan out what will be going into your meals and write out your grocery list for the week. We’re talking planning – down to the snacks – in order to avoid coming home after a long day and throwing a frozen meal in the microwave.
Weekdays are usually stressful, and jam-packed with responsibilities. So, plan, organize and then relax (seriously), to make sure you’re entering the new week in the right head-space. There is nothing worse than those Monday mornings where you feel like the weekend came and went in the blink of an eye. Though those crazy week beginnings are inevitable here and there, don’t let them become a routine. Stay on top of everything and start every new week the right way!