Everyone loves Fridays, right? But did you know that Friday is the least productive day of the week? I’m sure that doesn’t come as a total surprise. Everyone is ready for the weekend and you’re tired from the week already. So it’s no wonder that Fridays are when we don’t feel like we can get much done.
I want to share with you ways you can take back Friday for YOU. I talk about this in episode 025 of my podcast, but here I will give you five ideas for productive (and fun!) things to do on Fridays so that you can ease right into your weekend. Don’t let Friday just be a day of sitting there waiting for your weekend… use it to your advantage! Here’s how to make Friday your favorite day of the week!
TIPS TO SET UP YOUR FRIDAY FOR SUCCESS
- Prep for your Fridays. Make a conscious effort to get to bed earlier on Thursday nights to combat that burnout. Some people have happy hours at work on Thursday evenings, and while it’s important to socialize and have fun, make sure you’re creating a good habit for yourself and getting ready to have a good Friday.
- Pace yourself throughout the week. Avoid burnout and make sure you’re in the right mindset when you start projects. You’re not usually going to want to start a big task on a Friday, so plan ahead. Start the task on a productive day and then pace yourself, making sure each planned task gets done the day it needs to. This way, you won’t be hit with a giant to-do list on Friday as you’re trying to finish up. Keep Friday’s for easier tasks – lighten the load so that you’re not stressed all day. Plan ahead so that the more brainless tasks are for Friday as part of your admin time.
- Don’t make Friday your deadline. This will usually create a stressful day for yourself, especially if you procrastinate sometimes. Often, we don’t have control over deadlines. But consider teaming up with a coworker. There’s a lot of benefits to doing this – from socializing to learning new things and even doing a better job on a project. It will surely make things more manageable and productive!
- Don’t wait to be told what to do. If you have a boss that typically waits until Friday afternoon to tell you things that need to be done right away, take notice of that. Make it a point to ask on Thursday, “Hey, is there anything that can get wrapped up before the weekend? I finished X and Y and I’ve got some time left today to start working on anything pressing for Monday. Let me know if I can start working on this potential project.” Not only will this make you look good to your boss because you’re taking initiative, it will change their habit of coming to you on Friday to Thursday or before. And remember, if your boss still puts things on you last minute, you can still say yes by saying no. Try saying, “I’d love to take this project on, but what should I de-prioritize to be able to do this project to the best of my ability?” That’s a way of saying, “Yeah, I can’t really do that and do all the other things.” Draw clear lines between work and personal life, especially when your boss’s expectations are detrimental to the quality of your work or your personal well being.
- Create work/life boundary expectations with your email. If you’re having difficulty creating boundaries, here’s how you can train your boss or coworkers to respect them a bit more. It can be hard to not respond to email and it can be really disruptive to your weekends when you do. Don’t respond with actual answers, unless you’ve been given a really urgent deadline. Instead, give a reasonable timeline for when the project or that assignment will be completed. Lay out a clear plan to avoid any confusion or further emailing. Say, “I reviewed the email and assignment details. I will be able to have X completed and sent to you by 1 PM on Monday afternoon. I’ll let you know if I have any questions as I’m working.” This is a nice way to create boundaries, shows you read the email and notifies them when you’re available.
How to Make Fridays Feel Like a Day Off
We all wish we could just take the day off sometimes, right? But that’s not really possible. But there are ways we can make Friday’s FEEL like days off. And here are a few of the best ideas for what to do with your Fridays!
- Use Friday’s for learning. Take time to listen to a podcast, read articles and or brush up on a skill or software that you need for your job or business. This should be apart of your Important Priority Level. Learning and growing is really important for yourself personally and to further your career. What I suggest is saving relevant videos, articles, books, podcasts, etc. in a special folder for Fridays. Anything you’ve been emailed or have found throughout the week. Now you’ve got a designated time for learning! Isn’t there something you’ve wanted to know more about or be better at? This is your chance!
- Network during your Fridays. Since Friday’s tend to be slower and people are excited about the weekend, you’ll find that this is a great time to socialize and build connections. Whether it’s a coworker or client, see if you can find time to meet up in person and get to know them and any new projects for work that you should discuss. Use social media to your advantage in this way, too. Building connections in your industry is super important, rewarding and definitely can be fun!
- Use Fridays for a weekly download and future planning. Take time to look over your calendar and make sure you’ve completed the things you meant to for the week. This will give you closure and help you look forward to the weekend and next week ahead. Next, plan out your Monday to make sure you’re prepared for any meetings, due dates or anything else. If you’re not feeling prepared for something, scheduled in time to go over it the coming week. Make this one of the last things you do on Friday so that it’s fresh when you come back Monday.
- Make Friday your Quit Day. It’s important to take an assessment of the internal and external expectations, and see if there’s something that needs to go. This is for both work and personal life. Block off a time on Friday to figure out if you need to eliminate some of the noise in your life. You’re heading into the weekend and it’s just a great day to clear some thing(s) off of your plate! If you’re doing something that is no longer serving you, make a plan to quit. Learn more about that in episode 017 of the podcast!
- Set aside time to spend on transitioning. Create a transition ritual as you head into the weekend. A lot of people ease into work on Sundays, so why not ease into the weekend on Friday? De-clutter and prep your office for the following week. Make your office free of distractions for Monday mornings. Use this time to get to know your team, even with brainstorming sessions. Wrap up the week on a positive and clear note.
With these tips and strategies for making Friday your best day of the week, you’ll start the weekend right and come back Monday feeling refreshed and ready. I’d love to hear about any Friday rituals or habits you have! Comment here or connect with me on social media and let me know!
Let’s start taking back our Fridays by making them fun, stress-free AND productive!