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A friend called to see me last week and noticed a rail of clothes, hung neatly on my landing. I explained it was my work wardrobe for the week ahead.
Now this might sound a little OCD (actually it sounds a lot OCD), but I’ve been doing it for years. I’m a bit of an organised freak, most of the time, but planning my work wardrobe, in advance, means I’m totally stress free in the mornings. It also means I can curl up on Sunday evening, to watch Downtown, with no thought for Monday morning.
Lets face it, Monday mornings are the worst. Your alarm goes off way too early (wait, this can’t be right, it feels like I just went to bed!). By the time you FINALLY get out of bed (snooze button three times?) you’re already 15 minutes behind schedule. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are lots of things I do on Sunday, to help start my week out on the right foot. Follow these simple tips to take the “manic” out of your Monday.
1 Lay (or hang) out your clothes and pack your essentials for the next day (briefcase, laptop). If you think you’re too tired to pick out your clothes now, imagine how tired you’ll feel tomorrow morning! I sort of like dressing for work anyway, but having my outfits planned means I have more time to spend on the detail, like adding a scarf or a belt, which really finishes an outfit and helps me feel more professional and ‘put together’ (dress for the job you want, not the one you’re in). PS: I’m a Business Consultant as well as Blogger (in case you’re confused).
Don’t put this task off. If you only do one thing, do this. No matter what you have to do the next morning, having this one step to your morning routine already taken care of, saves you so much time and mental energy.
2 Plan and prep your meals.
Maybe not for the whole week, but at least Monday and Tuesday, and sort of have an inkling for the rest of the week. Your will power might waver on Mondays, and can even get worse as the week goes on. Try to counter this by stocking up on healthy foods and even preparing some meals in advance. Trust me, you’ll be more likely to eat the right stuff and less likely to dial pizza, or binge on snack foods, because there is “nothing in the fridge”.
I’m a bit of a morning person and enjoy getting up early. Early mornings allow for meandering because they don’t feature the reactiveness of the rest of the day (anyone who is awake in the morning is too busy doing their own thing to require anything of you). I also like breakfast, but it has to be leisurely, which is why I get up early); but, because some mornings can be a little busier than others, I actually set my breakfast tray out the night before. Seriously, it’s like a scene from the three bears. Kettle filled, porridge bowl, spoon, honey pot, cup and napkin (it actually brings a smile to my face as I realise how ridiculous I’m being). But I really enjoy breakfast, so it’s worth being prepared.
3 Plan your workouts - gather your gear.
Don't just think to yourself that you'll squeeze in a run here and a trip to the gym there — plan it out. Have your gym timetable pinned to your fridge, circle the classes you’re going to attend and go straight from work. If you just ‘stop off at home’ to feed the cat/change your shoes, the gym ain’t gonna happen. You’ll get that cosy home feeling as soon as you step though the door and you can kiss ‘Insanity’ goodbye.
Gather your gear. Actually sorting your gym gear, the night before, can be a step in the right direction, for motivating you to carry through with your planned workout. Pack your gym bag, and put it by the door or in your car, so you won't forget it when you leave for the day. Collect whatever you need to work out – trainers, yoga mat, earphones - and make sure everything is set, so you can easily grab the items throughout the week.
Because I’m so heavily involved with social media (and therefore always ‘on’) I try really hard to switch off from everything, on Sunday night, and reading a book seems to do that for me. Remember, when you were a kid and you used to either read to yourself or be read to, as you were falling asleep? There was a sound reason for this, which is that reading helps relax the mind, by distracting it from the goings on of today and tomorrow. This is particularly true of fiction - just make sure you don’t read anything too stimulating (or work-related).
5 Lights out
Once you’re set for tomorrow, take a nice hot bath, slip on your PJs, and hop into bed, early. Unwind with a book, and you're more likely to have a good night's sleep and wake up refreshed, for the week ahead. Just being still, has enormous benefits for your body and mind. So, even if you can’t sleep, embrace the chance to rest.
What's your Sunday evening routine? Leave a comment below.
Enjoy your week x