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04 Mar

Eight ways to turn off work during the weekend


Datum: 2015-03-04 11:00

Do you find it dif­fi­cult to com­plete­ly relax and not think about work dur­ing the week­end? If so, you are not alone. Many peo­ple I meet who have jobs that engage them and their atten­tion expe­ri­ence the same thing.

Some like it and do not see a prob­lem in that they think about work or per­haps even do work-relat­ed tasks dur­ing the weekend.

But most of the peo­ple I meet (myself includ­ed) pre­fer let­ting the week­end be a break from work and a few days when we at most loose­ly reflect on what we do for a liv­ing but do not let work intrude too much.

It is best to respond to con­tra­dic­to­ry feel­ings by concretizing
If it is dif­fi­cult to stop think­ing about work dur­ing the week­end, it is sel­dom enough to just tell your­self to get it togeth­er and stop think­ing about work immediately.

Rather, do some­thing con­crete to switch off work-mode on Fri­day after­noon and you will feel much more off-duty dur­ing the fol­low­ing two days.

Here are eight ideas of what you can do to get the week­end-feel­ing going.

Do this

  1. Clear­ly state to your­self why you want to unplug from work dur­ing the week­end. Write it down and save it some­where. You will be helped by your own words of wis­dom when you are tempt­ed to just fix a few things” that a col­league emailed you about on Sat­ur­day after­noon. It is easy to get sucked in again, but only because your col­leagues work late on week­end-nights, it does not mean you have to as well.

  2. If you do all or most of your work from a home-office, rent an office-space else­where instead.

    If this is not doable, close the door when you stop work­ing on Fri­day after­noon and keep it closed dur­ing the entire week­end. (And sure, if you need to get some­thing from your office dur­ing the week­end, you may open it, but just for a moment.)

    The work will be locked inside” the office and it is hence pos­si­ble to con­crete­ly and even phys­i­cal­ly stop your­self from work­ing when you do not real­ly want to.

  3. Get a pri­vate cell-phone instead of using your work-phone on your free time. This way you can choose when to turn it off and still be avail­able to your per­son­al contacts.

  4. Make sure your to-do-list is up to date and com­plete, so that you can relax know­ing that every­thing you have to do next week is on the list. There­fore there is no need for you to spend all of Sun­day wor­ry­ing or think­ing about for­get­ting any­thing impor­tant dur­ing the week.

  5. Deter­mine an effi­cient and quick way to make note of the things you do remem­ber and come to think of any­way dur­ing the week­end so that you can get it off your mind and so that it is eas­i­ly acces­si­ble on Mon­day once you are back at work. Write what­ev­er it is on a note which you put in your portable inbox in your brief­case or bag, or send an email to your work-email.

  6. Do not make any work-relat­ed phone-calls on your way home Fri­day after­noon. Rather, let the trip home be the tran­si­tion between work and your spare time, dur­ing which you leave work and the week behind you.

  7. Do not make your office-email avail­able from your pri­vate com­put­er or oth­er dig­i­tal units. This way it will be more dif­fi­cult to check your work-email dur­ing the week­end. Reward your­self gen­er­ous­ly the first week­end you man­age to not check your work-email even once between for instance Fri­day 5pm and Mon­day 8am.

  8. If you in spite of all these tricks still catch your­self think­ing about work when you are off-duty, allow your­self to do so. Take ten min­utes to sit down with an emp­ty sheet before you and write down every­thing you keep think­ing of. Place the sheet in your portable inbox, relax and let go of work men­tal­ly until you again catch your­self think­ing about it. Take out the sheet and con­tin­ue writing.

Option­al, but I high­ly rec­om­mend it
If it not your wish to stop think­ing about work dur­ing the week­end, but you would rather feel free to think of any­thing that comes to mind as it pops up, by all means, do not try any of the tips men­tioned above. Just enjoy your mind flow­ing freely and keep doing as you please.

But if you do some­thing tan­gi­ble to turn away from work-relat­ed thoughts dur­ing the week­end, it will be eas­i­er to give your­self a well deserved break, reload and relax. You will return to work on Mon­day morn­ing rest­ed and ready for a new week, and you might expe­ri­ence that you are get­ting more done dur­ing the days of the week rather than expe­ri­enc­ing them as a blur and filled with mun­dane routine.

What is your method?
What is your best tip to let­ting go of work dur­ing the week­end? Write a com­ment and share!

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