If you haven’t planned out your long weekend, you might wind up on the couch or the computer chair for three days, making zero memories. Let’s minimise regret by making a plan.
Make a bad weather plan
It's well and truly chilly right now, but not all long weekends will have you bundling up. Check your forecast, and come up with three specific ideas: Something to do if it’s...
- Super-gross hot
- That perfect, bright, breezy warm weather
- Rainy or cold or otherwise rubbish weather
Now the weather can’t screw up your plans, because you have a backup. When you have to run inside, you’ll have a matinee in mind, or the right place to go shopping, or something better than Netflix to entertain yourself at home. (If you’re really looking forward to watching six hours of TV, go for it! Just don’t settle for it if you actually wanted to, say, play D&D.)
Maybe it isn’t the weather you need to watch, but your own energy level. Write down the ambitious plan and the fallback lazy plan.
For me, that’s “take the ferry to Governors Island” vs. “walk to the local park”. The point is that if I can’t do the big ambitious plan, I don’t panic or feel guilty or collapse on the couch. I still go out and do what I have the energy for.
Write your plan down
Take that weekend plan and write it down. Make a pledge to get out and do a specific activity. Don’t just flip through Instagram watching everyone else’s good time. (But do check Instagram to see if there are any social outings you can join.)
Engage in all the classic little self-care habits
Read this pep talk from redditor DiceGames, aimed at anyone with a habit of wasting weekends. It covers all the basics: Drink a glass of water, get some sun, plan a meal, schedule some no-phone time on Freedom or Screen Time.
If you can, get one errand done early. You’re trading in that time for a little more peace on Monday night, when you’ll be knackered. Do as much necessary prep right now as you can. Because the Sunday Sads are the worst when they’re delayed til Monday.
Wake up early
Not crack of dawn; I’m not saying don’t sleep in. The best minutes of the weekend are the extra ones you spend unconscious. But if you’re waking up at 7:00AM on weekdays, maybe get up at 8:00AM. Sleeping in doesn’t really catch you up, so take those hours back.
The real point of this is, the sooner you wake up, the sooner you get out of the house. If you’re like me and you usually can’t get out the door until 1:00PM, just hitting fresh air before noon will make you feel amazing.
Set a different alarm, one with a different sound, not your weekday alarm sound. Read in bed. Speaking of!
Here’s how to turn sitting still into a memorable activity: Read a book. This is the time for cheap mass-market paperbacks by the fire or curled up on the couch. A good read is perfect for the beach, park or beer garden during warmer seasons as well.
It’s ready entertainment for the whole family that doesn’t wear you all out. Or it’s the best way to suck a little more marrow from the day on the tired ride home.