Are You Living Just for the Weekend?

With a 9-5 job, it can be easy to get discouraged by the amount of hours left in the day when you’re not at work…

This post comes from our Blog Intern, Emily.

Let’s be real here, we’re all living for the weekend.

The weeks seem to fly by. Five whole days start and finish, usually too quickly for me to be okay with it. Is this life now? Is this what being an adult is? Where does the time go?!

I ask myself these questions all the time…

But why? I love my life. I’m a happy person. I’m extremely grateful for what I have in life and the lifestyle that I get to live. But for some reason, it’s not enough. I’m always left feeling like I didn’t accomplish enough or that the weekend disappears so quickly. Making it hard for me to have fun, relax, and get all my shit done in two days… And I don’t have many of the tasks that my co-workers and managers do!

Is it because I’m lazy? Is it because I constantly want to make myself a better person? Is it because I think I don’t have enough time for anything else?

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This is what my routine on 3-4 weekdays looks like as of late:
Wake up too late, rush to get ready. I’m desperate for coffee, only have time to make coffee, so I skip breakfast and head out for work.
Work a regular day, shoot, write, and sometimes work from home to finish little later into the evening.
Go home, take pants off immediately. Something too comfortable is usually on within 5 minutes of arriving home.
Throw myself on the couch and check in with texts and social media (this usually goes on way longer than it should. Instagram: you’re a freaking trap.)
When I’m being mindful and present, I’ll take some deep breaths and stretch, which improves everything, yet I don’t do it enough. On another note; why is it so hard to do things that are good for us?
Next, I turn some tunes on and get ready to cook. Some days I’ll have a glass of wine. This is usually how I unwind and get present. I get to be creative, listen to music, dance in the kitchen a little, and create something made with 100% love to nourish my body and mind.
Then, it’s on to the floor to eat (I really need a dinner table.) Every single night, I plop myself in front of my laptop on the coffee table for Netflix. And this is where it all starts. My mind goes a little like this: “Alright, I can finally sit down and enjoy my meal and be mindlessly entertained. Just one episode! Then I’ll clean up and maybe tidy the house or do some laundry, or call a family member.” BUT, all willpower goes out the window and two or three hours later, I’m like, WTF? It’s 10 pm? I have to clean up my dinner mess and go to bed!
Repeat.

A lot of my time feels wasted.

Many of my friends and people I work with go out almost every night. To work out, go to a yoga class, grab drinks with friends, dinner, or go to events happening around the city. I always wonder, “how do you do it?” I tell myself I’m too busy. But I’m not. I’ve always been a little more introverted and I’m definitely a homebody. I’m okay with staying in a lot, and unwinding in my own ways. So some of it is my nature, maybe? But I know I have better ways to unwind than to eat dinner and zombie out.

So, I’m on a mission to make a change. To get more out of my weeks, change my routine, and be better about my priorities and what I spend my time on.

I have a choice. I can be one of those people who is always doing something, who works out during the week, and tries new things. Here’s how I’m trying to get myself out of my current routine:

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Realize how many hours you actually do have left in the week. It’s around 50-70 if you work 40 hours a week and get 8 hours of sleep. That’s a lot! That’s so many hours I spend in front of a screen! I work in front of a computer screen all day, escape from it for 2 hours, and then return to a screen for the rest of the night. Yikes…

Prioritize. Get the “I’m too busy” out of your head. Because you’re not too busy. You just have something else you want to spend your time doing. And that’s okay. If you want to make time for something, it must be a priority.

Wake up earlier. This is one I know I can really benefit from. Just getting up one hour earlier will change everything. It would be nice to get some of the things I need to get done out of the way in the morning so that I can enjoy my evenings more.

Make lists. Write down what you’d like to accomplish during the week. Both fun and not so fun things.

Break the week up
. For a few reasons. One, so you don’t go HAM on the weekends. I usually end up saving all the fun stuff I want to do for the weekends and saving all the productive stuff for the weekends. How the heck am I supposed to do it all? Simple answer: you’re not. Not everything can happen on the weekend.  I need to start doing my laundry during the week. Make my lunches at night. I need to see friends, get out of the house. I need to run to the store. Take a yoga class. It’s better to spread everything out throughout your weeks, than in two very fast 48 hours.

Make time for yourself. Do something you love doing at least once a day. Go on a walk, take a bath, read a book, make something with your hands, get your nails done, have a good conversation, go see a show. When you do the things you love it’s hard not to feel good about where your time is being spent.

Slow down. Life already moves too fast. We rush all the time. The more we acknowledge that and tell ourselves “there’s not enough time; it goes so quickly, I don’t know where I’ll ever get the time”. Just stop, for an entire minute. One minute. No phone, no distractions. Just stay where you are for an entire minute. Breathe, look around, maybe close your eyes. You’ll realize that a minute is actually a pretty long time. It might be easier to make better use of those precious minutes!

Be gentle with yourself. Routines take some time. Getting into the flow of changing your lifestyle a little will probably take a few weeks for it to become normal. Enjoy the process and become aware of how you feel throughout the changes.

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+Do you find yourself in a similar routine? How do you make the most out of your week so that you can enjoy your weekends? Let me know in the comments below! 

Images by Jana Kirn.

Follow Emily on Instagram and Tumblr.

Comments

  1. This is definitely all to familiar. I find myself in a constant loop of routine, and I need routine because it grounds me in a way – I’m introverted as well so I don’t go crazy but I also feel I need those crazy days, otherwise it’s as if time’s wasting away and all i’m doing is trying to financially hold myself together. I think waking up a couple of hours early is something that helps me get my workout in as I need that, but then I get tired early so I guess it’s kind of the same, but at least I can get that beauty sleep in! Like you say, no point being hard on ourselves, we just have to live in the now.

  2. I love and feel really related with every post of Emily, especially this one. You just put into words all the feelings I’ve been having for few months ago. I find myself constantly waiting for the week to end to “relax” and do the stuff I really like, I mean, why cant I do this during the week too?… I’m definitely starting a list :)

  3. I needed to read this! I feel so stuck in my current routine of working 7-330, doing homework for a couple of hours, lose myself in a TV show or two, then go to sleep. I also wake up last minute and try to rush myself and my son out the door. My routine, while pretty straightforward, has been so stressful and I need to start adding in some time for myself.

  4. Very true, it’s something I’ve become aware of myself all too recently. The number of times I’ve thought to myself “Where did that time go, I didn’t have time to do x” and then realise I spent an hour trawling Instagram or Facebook… all too often we say “I don’t have time” but if you look at what you’re doing with your time you’ll find you have plenty of it. We’ve just become too accustomed to having everything there instantly or done for us and being able to “waste” our time on TV and Facebook (and if you’re enjoying that then it isn’t a waste) but we do need to start recognising just where our time is going.

  5. I know this feeling. Thank you for the tools to make better use of the time I actually got left during the week

  6. I need to start giving myself time to be honest! I spend all my time making my friends and family happy by organising trips out and offering my shoulder to cry on. I find myself wrapped in a tidal wave of routine. Wake up, school, homework, drama and the sleep repeat!

  7. Great post Emily,
    You have quite a following and I look forward to reading your posts and comments every week. Your insight is wonderful. I always have a list in my head but a written list works well, as you can tick it off and see results.
    Glad you have several lists now. Don’t forget the summer bucket list.
    My mantra is “why not” and is working most of the time. Enjoy everyday!!

  8. If I could recommend you anything, is to stop starting new TV shows. Starting new shows is a trap because none of us have that kind of self-control.
    Just stick to the ones you’re already watching and then you’ll have one episode a week per show to watch. Once an episode is over, you won’t have anything to watch and tell yourself “just one more episode”.
    I set myself a limit on how many shows I can watch and NEVER start a new show unless it’s already finished (and I have enough time to get sucked into it).

  9. Gosh, I pretty much the exact same evening routine when I finish working. Why is it so tempting to dissolve into a netflix show all night??? Perhaps because we are so stimulated with information during the day that it would be too much of a chock to shut it off entirely, so a moderately stimulating show is was feels “relaxing”. And i’m not gonna lie, those movie nights or netflix nights are some of my favorite, but perhaps they don’t have to happen every day.

    I work from home so I break up the week quite a lot naturally. No one’s gonna stop me if I pop over to the yoga studio over lunch. For me it has helped to not think of work so much as a 9-5 job but instead think about what i wanna accomplish/take time to do during a full week, including weekend, and then try to plan accordingly. Sometimes I do some work in the weekends (most times), but I also have time for long walks during the weekdays and I cook something nourishing almost every single day. I know some people say it’s hard for your brain to relax if you don’t have clear structures on what’s work and what’s not, but I wanna feel like I live life all the time! Not rushing through the work day only so it can end. In that case I much rather live a life where work and free time is more intertwined, given that I enjoy my work of course :-)

    Long comment, but thanks for sharing your concerns and your inspiring goals to change!
    Have an awesome day! And perhaps take an evening walk and enjoy peeking into people’s windows tonight instead of watching fictional lives on netflix? ;-) xx

  10. I’m so happy I spotted your post, Emily. I love that you’re working on changing the pattern. I’m attempting to do the same as well. I really like that you talk about breaking up the week – that’s something I need to work on more as well. I do a lot of my blog/freelance work well…after work, but I save a big chunk of it for the weekend and then I never have enough time to do it all. Something that’s helped me is planning my week out on Sundays. Not entirely, but at least my tasks. I write the three most important to-dos in my planner for each day so I know how to budget my time appropriately and it seems to be working!

  11. I like a lot your post, when I read, I read my life style during the week. I think the small things are the best. So I try to enjoy more the little things of the life.
    We have to working a lot to enjoy

  12. Honey, you’re doing too much. That’s why you feel exhausted. Don’t try to do more, try to find what it is that truly inspires you – and do that. Much love to you x

  13. Thank you for this! I’ve been feeling this way for weeks! It’s good to feel like I’m not alone and other people are trying to figure out how to balance their lives better too!

  14. Your article is like it was written about my own life. I feel like the last 3 years of my life just look the same to me, the same routine… My routine is (although I’m trying to change it) almost the same as yours. I think I’m addicted to Netflix. I would watch an entire 5-10 seasons TV series in a month. I got so bad at doing laundry, that at one point I had 2 months worth of unwashed laundry to do (Luckily I’ve got lots of clothes so I never reused any dirty piece). It took me an entire week to wash it all (like I would wake up, wash 5 loads, store/iron the dried clothes, and suddenly it was nighttime again). Imagine having to wash 25 pairs of jeans, 35 sweatshirts/sweaters, you get the idea… It was awful. I felt my life being wasted just doing laundry and watching Netflix. Now, I’m avoiding Netflix like the plague and I do my laundry way more often. Still, I’m trying to do more productive things with my life.

  15. I used to feel like this all the time… Kinda like ground hog day. Even though my work week is broken up. I started taking yoga classes and made time to go 4-5 days a week and it became easier to fit in after a few weeks of “scheduling” them. I also do my laundry through out the week and it is easier to keep up with. Lastly, I love make time for dates and hanging with friends after work. Even if it’s only 1 day a week. So nice to break things up.

  16. Really can connect with…”Slow down. Life already moves too fast. We rush all the time. The more we acknowledge that and tell ourselves “there’s not enough time; it goes so quickly, I don’t know where I’ll ever get the time”. Just stop, for an entire minute. One minute. No phone, no distractions. Just stay where you are for an entire minute. Breathe, look around, maybe close your eyes. You’ll realize that a minute is actually a pretty long time. It might be easier to make better use of those precious minutes!”

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