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We all look forward to the weekend, but the truth is that many of us, and I’m so guilty of this, use the weekend to catch up on all the errands and tasks we could complete during the week. The result is that you spend all your Saturday and part of your Sunday taking care of those things and you never have enough time to enjoy your weekend.
In my opinion, that’s no way to enjoy your time. Unless you enjoy doing those chores. But, I generally don’t like cleaning and grocery shopping for fun. Although, I realize they must be done.
I’ve tried so many methods to free up more of my weekends and this is what works for me.
1- Spend only 20 minutes a day cleaning Monday-Thursday
When I first started this routine, I was tired the first couple of weeks. But once I got used to the routine, it got easier. I’ve also been able to tidy the messiest room in 20 minutes or less. It’s so satisfying to see a room clean every the week that it naturally motivates me to keep going throughout the week.
And even with my crazy busy schedule of full-time work, errands, and driving the kids to after school activities, I can still find 20 minutes to carve out of my day. And now I have at least three extra hours during my weekend all freed up with no cleaning duties.
2- Do your grocery shopping in a less busy weekday
This serves two benefits. It saves you both time and money. If you shop on a typically slow day (Tuesday-Thursday), then you’re in an out in half the time it takes on a weekend shopping trip. And, the less time you spend in a grocery store, the less you typically spend on groceries. At least this has been the case for me. When I have time to wander because the store is crowded, I tend to buy more junk food as I stroll. This saves me from those temptations and cuts my time in half.
3- Do one load of laundry per day, if possible, or pick a mid day week as the laundry day
I have been trying to convince one of my closest friends of this amazing trick I discovered, but even ‘till this day she chooses to spend hours on her Saturday doing just laundry. I guess she’s a glutton for punishment.
What if I told you that doing just one load a day (if you have an in home laundry unit) can give you back at least 4 hours of your weekend? If you don’t have a laundry room at home and you go to a Laundromat, try going at a time when it’s not so busy during the week. That way you can put all your loads at once.
I used to go on a Friday night because people tend to do their laundry earlier in the day or wait until Saturday or Sunday. I’d get all of my laundry done (4 loads) and folded in about 2 hours. And that with 2 small kids in tow.
4- Make your lunch breaks more productive. Do your banking, shop online, plan your dinner
I try to do as much while I’m at work during my breaks so that I don’t have to spend time in the car running errands later. Luckily, I have a bank, post office, and target nearby my work. So I use my breaks or lunch to do some of my errands. It shaved about 30 extra minutes from my weekend and I feel efficient when I do that.
I often plan my dinners during lunch time too. Before I go to bed each night, I take out meat from the freezer to thaw out on the counter overnight. Then, when I wake up in the morning, I put it in the fridge for the day. So, I already know some meals that I can make with the meat I chose to use that day.
I also use my lunch hour to browse Pinterest or think of what we can make that’s quick and yummy. This planning keeps me from stressing out on my way home. I’m usually picking from something I have on hand so it also saves me from a drive thru run and you know this is always a win in my book.
5- Spend 5 minutes tidying your car per day
Okay, this is one my hardest tasks and my car is usually a mess most days, because of all of the after school activities my kids have and because I’m always in the car. But, when I remember to do this, my car stays tidy and organized for a longer period of time and I feel calmer when I drive in a neat car.
When the car is cluttered, it can stress you out when your driving and it makes the experience of being in the car more unpleasant. To combat this, try keeping a plastic bag that hangs from your gear shift as a makeshift trash bag. It helps when you have a place to put your trash right away so it doesn’t pile up in your cup holders.
Am I the only one that this happens to?
Having a tidy and organized car keeps you a happier driver in my opinion. I feel more relaxed when I’m not driving in a cluttered mess.
With these 5 tasks, I find myself having more time during the weekend to spend with my family.
It feels good knowing that I actually have the time to unwind and recover from the week by doing a little more during the week. My family time is sacred to me. So, I’ve used these tricks to help me cut out more time for the things I value the most.
A clean house and completed tasks are always my goal, but remember to also give yourself grace. My house is not always tidy and my to do list is never empty. But I strive to do as much as I can within the time I have, without sacrificing my valuable family time.
So if you’re struggling with managing your time, find your balance without being too hard on yourself.
Take time to relax and find your happy balance.
That’s just as important as tending to your home and your chores. And remember, nothing needs to ever be perfect. Inspectors are not coming to your home anytime soon. So, do what you can when you can, and give yourself time to recharge during your weekend.