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Its 2:30pm on Friday afternoon and, as anyone who works with me will happily testify, I am about 30 minutes away from the full onslaught of that ‘Friday Feeling’. I find it an inevitable occurrence that is deeply engrained into my weekly body clock. Thoughts of family time, shopping, takeaway night, drinks with friends – whatever it is that is lined up to fill the weekend ahead is now at the forefront of my mind as I race to finish my to do list, clear my desk and head home for a couple of days. Don’t get me wrong, I am definitely in the lucky group of people that can honestly say they love their job but even that doesn’t stop me from succumbing to this traditional ‘week end’ feeling.
If you, like me, fall victim of this timely condition then your colleagues would be forgiven for assuming that your weekend is a full 2 day long extravaganza of exciting events, untouched by the stresses of work and no thought of the workload of the week ahead. But the truth is that, for most, there is an overlap. A certain point in the weekend when that other ‘feeling’ kicks in – that ‘Sunday Feeling’.
The reality of the week ahead triggers your concentration to switch swiftly back to the work week ahead and what the joys of Monday morning will bring! That big presentation you have to make on Tuesday, the proposal that needs to be on the boss’s desk by noon on Monday… maybe you should just check your emails to see if anything new has come in… and so it begins. You check out of ‘home life’ and check back in to work quicker than you can say “Sunday roast”.
So, let me share with you one of my own New Year’s resolutions.
Over the coming months I will be sharing with you some handy time management tips, designed to make your work life more efficient and help you achieve your goals, whether work or personal. I thought I would start with a simple tip on how to shave a few hours off your working week (that Sunday feeling) and give the time back to your weekend.
My Weekly Review
When? 3pm – Friday Afternoons.
How Long? 15 Minutes.
What? A short period of time to reflect on the week just gone and plan for the week ahead.
Why? To enable you to leave the office in the office without jeopardising the momentum of your workload and the success of your objectives.
How? Here is my 3 step plan to a weekly review:
Step 1: Look at what you have achieved in the past week and ensure that your objectives are updated to reflect any completions and progress. This will help you realign your goals and show you what you have left to do.
Step 2: Ensure that any new objectives are added to the mix. Perhaps a new project has landed in your inbox or a change in strategy has given you a new target to aim for. Whatever it is, it is no good on a post-it note or swamped at the bottom of your in tray. Make sure it is just as visible as your other goals.
Step 3: Schedule the activity required for these objectives in to your diary so that you have a clear and achievable plan to work to when you get back to the office on Monday.
Done properly, this should allow you to walk away from the office on Friday knowing that you can pick up where you left off with a workable plan to keep you in check.
Sound like something you could/should be doing? Well, by all means, try it yourself. Hopefully a simple weekly review on a Friday Afternoon could save from losing your Sunday Afternoon and win you some brownie points with your loved ones!
Have a great weekend!