When I started Zenplicity, I worked all the time – even weekend work hours. There were always things that I felt needed to get done, my task list was never ending, and my weekdays were always spent working on client projects. I felt like I didn’t have enough hours in the day to accomplish all of the things on my own task list, and like most entrepreneurs, a good portion of my weekends were spent well…working.
My hubby and I have definitely had our share of squabbles over my working hours that bleed into the weekend. Finally, we decided that we needed to set some ground rules to make sure our weekends stay balanced with work time and family time.
Here are my Top 5 Tips to balance Family Time + Work Time on the weekend.
1. Set a timer.
Weekends are precious hours that can be used to catch up on work, but it’s also prime family fun time. Buy a timer (I decided on a pretty hourglass timer!) and work for an allotted time. When the timer runs out, reset it and spend that same amount of time doing a family project, cleaning up around the house, or watching your favorite tv show.
2. Check email at the beginning of your allotted work time.
And don’t feel like you have to respond to everything right away. When I stopped responding to my client emails on the weekend, the amount of incoming emails drastically decreased. If I need to respond to a work email over the weekend, I always Boomerang the message.
3. Focus, focus, focus.
Hopefully your important deadlines are scheduled in your calendar. Figure out which project/task needs to be top priority for your weekend work time. Focus on that one item, and forget the rest for now. They’ll still be there on Monday, but you’ll feel better knowing you made massive progress on the one that needs your immediate attention. I promise you’ll get more accomplished if you keep your attention zeroed into one project rather than trying to multitask.
4. Work during the time that’s most productive for YOU.
Some people do their best work in the morning. Others might be night owls and welcome the opportunity to stay up late to get things done. Some people like to sleep in on the weekends. Balance the hours in your weekend between work and play in a way that fits your family lifestyle. I can get mountains of work done after my daughter’s bed time and while my hubby is involved in a super-important Xbox game. :)
I know it’s tempting to crank out a whole bunch of work during the weekends, but practicing self-care and relaxation will actually boost your productivity. Don’t feel guilty for taking a much needed power nap.
By purposefully planning your weekend work time and following these simple guidelines, you’ll take care of business and have time to enjoy the things you love, too!