Success starts with Sunday

In our 24-7 workaholic culture, it’s hard to maintain good free-time hygiene. You know, actually unplug and do something just for yourself or fully engaged with others.

While Friday is often the day of great pressure relief, the pressure starts building up again on Sundays.

A 2021 LinkedIn Study of 3,000 U.S. professionals found that 66 percent reported feeling anxious on Sundays about the coming workweek, also known as the “Sunday Scaries.”

There are ways to keep your Sundays fun days, and keep the Sunday Scaries at bay.

The unknowns are what eat away at your mental wellness, so sit down and write out your tasks for the week to vanquish the ambiguity.

I’m a big fan of a checklist with little checkboxes that I love to check off. On the right side, I put a list of work tasks (i.e., email marketing campaign, CRM demo). On the left side, personal tasks (i.e., call the plumber, sign kid up for whatevs, pick up dry cleaning).

Sometimes, I add an aspirational goal across the top of the planner to remind me what I’m ultimately working towards. You can add a theme, an intention or a quote, too. Whatever inspires and motivates you.

Once you write it down, you don’t have to spin it around in your mind anymore. Think of something later? Write it down, and forget about that too (until Monday).

I like to use a physical planner as well as electronic because I get satisfaction from putting pencil to paper, but do you, boo. If you are out when an idea strikes, email yourself, so you see it when you open your email on Monday and can check it off your worries for Sunday.

The Sunday Scaries are like a work Rick Roll. With a Rick Roll, when you play the song, it will quit rolling around in your head. Same with the doom and dread you feel about the coming week. Take five minutes, play out the week in your head, and forget it about the rest of the day.

Don’t forget to give yourself permission to not just take time off from work, but to take time off from thinking about work. The work will still be there, whether you think about it or not.

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