I’ve recently been feeling how easy it would be to overwork myself, to keep going even when I know I’m too tired and should take a break. For that reason, I’ve been working on setting up boundaries and practices for myself that will help sustain my energy and joy throughout busy seasons. I wanted to share a few of them with you here!
1) Build a practice of rest into one day a week - For me, that’s Sunday. I have set aside the day to just be. I avoid doing anything that I consider “work.” A note about this practice: it can be difficult at first, and your life might actually feel more messy. I learned a lot about building my own restful practice, or sabbath, from author Ruth Haley Barton in her book Embracing Rhythms of Work and Rest: From Sabbath to Sabbatical and Back Again. Check it out here!
2) Plan out the to-dos for your week at the beginning of it - Every Sunday evening, I write out my weekly schedule into my planner. Once I’ve written it out, I go back through and pull out all the tasks associated with all my calendar events. For example, if I have a meeting on Friday, I add a task to Monday to confirm the meeting with everyone, add a task to Wednesday to start prepping my notes, and a task to Thursday to finish prepping for the meeting. This way, going into my week, I know I’ve thought through what’s already on my calendar. I use Notion to organize all my tasks using a weekly planner I created:
3) Create regular routines to save time and brain power - I’ve spent time creating my morning, after work and evening routines with a mix of ideal and practical items. I've gained inspiration from watching a lot of Youtube videos and picking out the things I resonated with. Over time, I’ve adapted them to fit each season of my life.
4) Take regular breaks - In my work and personal life, I try to be intentional about taking breaks from tasks to refocus and take a breath. I sometimes take this time to go for a short walk, drink some water, text a friend or something else that helps me reset. I’ve used a few different methods for keeping track of time and breaks. Two that I’ve had great success with are: Pomofocus and Forest.