A young Black woman reading and petting her dog on her day off.

Photo Credit: Pexels, Samson Katt

Have a Day Off? Make Sure You Take Advantage

Work can be exhausting. School can be exhausting. Life can be exhausting. That’s part of why it’s so common to look forward to your next day off. Only a day off from your day job (whether you’re a worker in the workforce, a student in the classroom, or a full-time caretaker in the home) isn’t always a “day off.”

Half of Americans have a side hustle, even if they’re earning six figures from their main gig, and a day off is the perfect time to prioritize it. For students, a day off from classes is often a day filled with homework. Then there are always household chores that need to be done, family commitments that need attending to, relationships that need investing in, and so on and so forth. At the same time, there’s sleep to catch up on, movies and television shows to watch, and other personal, often relaxing activities to engage in.

Altogether, there are so many things to do on a day off that the day can be over before you know it. Too often without you feeling like you did what you needed to. But it doesn’t always have to be that way.

Make sure you spend your time purposefully

Side hustles and homework can be just as important as chores, social commitments, and self-care. That’s part of why it can be so easy to get swept up doing one for so long that you don’t have time for the others. Tips for balancing responsibilities can help you decide when to devote time to what. But on your day off, attending to everything isn’t always necessary. In fact, sometimes it may be more taxing than it is beneficial. It’s okay to “only” do one thing. So long as you’re doing so purposefully.

Let’s say you’re a college student who has a test the day after your day off. And let’s say, after an intense week of studying, you’re not sure whether to spend your day off studying even more, go to your school’s football game with your friends, or stay in and rest your mind and body. What do you do?

There’s no one right answer. If you think it’s best to study more, then study. If you think you’ll benefit from hanging with your friends and focusing on something else, go to the football game. And if you think it wisest to sleep in and detox from a stressful week at home, then stay in and rest. Similarly, do any conjunction of these things if you think that’s best. But choose what you want to do. Have a reason for doing what you do or don’t do. Be purposeful with how you spend your time. Because there is one wrong answer: doing any or all of the things without knowing why.

Don’t just make a decision. Know why you’re making the decision you’re making. Do that, and you’ll be more likely to accomplish what you need to, not just what you can.  

Having a day off might not be as common as we’d like it to be. But that’s all the more reason to make sure you take advantage of your day off whenever you have one.

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