The need to relax and take a break from work is a requirement for your body. But, studies show people are happier at work–even while claiming they rather be at home.
The contradiction may be a consequence of a lack of thought into how days off are spent. Leisure, if no thought is applied, often ends up being wasted in low-reward thoughtless activity.
Not keeping them separate tends to decrease performance in both. Working on your days off, your body starts being lazy during your workday to compensate.
Committing to work only during a certain time period helps to combat the tendency to mix work and pleasure.
Some people do fine with unstructured days off, but others can better enjoy themselves when they plan fun things to do even when they don’t follow them perfectly.
If you enjoy reading, reading provides an easy way to avoid wasting your days off. If you don’t enjoy reading, that’s okay too–days off are about relaxing, not productivity.
Keep a calendar that can store potential activities you might like to take part in. Unless you need to buy tickets well in advance, this planning ensures you’ll always have options for interesting things to do.
Try ones for things you’ve always wanted to try instead of the academic ones. Learning without pressure can be relaxing as it takes your mind off results and onto process.
Stop your time management routine for a day and aim to be as slow as possible.
Wake up early and spend an hour cooking breakfast, two hours reading and walk everywhere instead of driving. It can be refreshing to aim for the opposite of a typically busy lifestyle.
Meditation doesn’t need to be long and uncomfortable, it may just mean having some extra time with your thoughts.
Sort out all those ideas that have been jumping around in your head but you haven’t had time to think through.
Spend a day reviewing your life’s trajectory to inject new energy into goals that might otherwise lose motivation over time.
Check what’s going well and what isn’t? Plan, set big goals or adapt your approach.
Contact people you haven’t talked to in a few months. Call up old friends and drop people messages to meet up.
Don’t let your relationships wither and die because you are too busy to invest your time.
Make your most intense workday the one before your day off.
This gives you an incentive to complete more and work harder, knowing you have the entire next day to relax.
If your schedule won’t allow a complete day off, try to squeeze in either a half or quarter day vacation in.
This is better than trying to squeeze in break times every few minutes to compensate for a lack of time off.
The feeling of effort is a sensation of opportunity costs. When you’re doing anything, and an alternative activity promises to be easier and more immediately rewarding, the activity feels effortful.
This explains why people could spend all their time reading in earlier eras. They could do so because this activity didn’t need to compete with cheaper stimulation.
It means absolutely not tolerating distractions and producing monumental quality and quantity in a very short time.
This is how you can complete far more with focused efforts than unfocused efforts with far more time.