Have you ever taken the day off only to realize you’ve wasted it? It’s the worst feeling to use your hard-earned vacation time and not even do the one thing you really wanted to do. Today was almost that day for me. Here are three ways to make sure you make the most of your day, and a fun quiz for you to take at the end, too.
- Leave the bed unmade. This may seem a bit silly, but it’s all about breaking away from your daily routine. If you’re like me, you like to begin your day the same way every day. You don’t even think about it. You get out of bed, and your entire being shifts into auto-mode. There’s nothing wrong with this unless it’s your day off. I suspect that you have something special in mind when you decide to take a day off, and it probably has little to do with what you normally do each day. So do yourself a favor and change the way you begin. If you usually make up your bed first, skip it. Do anything except what you usually do to send a signal to your brain that your intentions for the day are different.
- Let them wait. Everyone who can take care of themselves needs to take a back seat to whatever you’ve planned (or not planned) for yourself on your day off. For some, this isn’t a problem. For others, it’s quite challenging. The phone rings, beeps, or plays your favorite song, and you answer it without hesitation. There you are again in auto-mode. It’s your mom, your friend, your cousin, your neighbor, your pharmacy, or a random call from one of my favorites—a home security service that just won’t stop calling no matter how many times you block the number! In my case, I usually talk to my mom several times a day. I call, email, text, and/or Facebook friends at least weekly. I rarely hear from cousins. It’s sad, but true. I almost never hear from neighbors. This is also sad, but true. Then again, I haven’t exactly given my phone number to most of them. I receive at least one call from my pharmacy every week informing me that I have a prescription ready for pick up. This often saddens me because it’s a reminder of the number of prescriptions I must take and the amount due is always more than I want to spend. As for the random calls, well, there aren’t any nice words for the way I feel when I realize it’s the same security company calling from a different number, which I now also have to block. The point is to not allow yourself to be distracted by the usual things or people on your day off. Special Note: If your child calls, it all depends. Consider returning the call at the end of your day. However, if you choose to answer and it’s obvious that it’s not an urgent matter, then limit the conversation and avoid committing to do anything that will take away from your plans for yourself. After all, it’s just for one day. Sounds selfish? Yes, but it’s the good kind.
- Stop and start over. If you’re half-way through the day and your day off isn’t what you want it to be, just stop whatever you are doing. Really, stop. Don’t complain or go off on some negative tangent. Also, don’t take it out on anyone else. It won’t make you feel any better. I know because I wasted about an hour doing this today. When I realized I had to write a letter and search for property tax records, I wanted to scream. I actually said, “This is not what I want to do on my day off.” If you’re saying the same thing, then make quick work of getting on to what you want to do. It’s that simple.