Week 43: Switch off evenings

It’s so easy after a day at work to come back in the evenings and think of a dozen things you have to do, ‘life admin’ as a friend of mine called it.

All of the things you end up doing are probably not that urgent but they take up those valuable hours between returning from work and going to bed and often they tend to take longer than you think, which in turn leaves you feeling like you have wasted a good chunk of your evening.

It’s at these times that you could have been out for a run, catching up with friends or spending time cooking a nice meal and it’s more the acknowledgement of what you could have been doing which makes you resent the time spend online.

This week I decided not to switch on my laptop in the evenings and to instead spend time doing other things, what you might call more creative things. I spend an evening drawing, one evening putting together a memories book for a friend and an evening doing some cooking. I also took some time to hang out with my housemate where usually we don’t make any special effort.

I felt I had more time to play with and I got a lot more out of these activities than I would from an evening sorting out bills, or organising my inbox.

Of course, these things have to get done at some point, however it made me think more about how best to maximise my time, especially when evenings are some of the only hours of the day where you can do things you want to do, not ruled by deadlines or distractions at work.

I have also been inspired by the book ‘What The Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast’ by Laura Vanderkam in which she writes about planning your time and working out how you can make the most of your hours. For instance in the morning before work. For many people this is a quick get up get out time of day, however when used wisely you can achieve a lot, even before breakfast!

And how does this link to self-confidence? Well when you’re doing everything you need to do, you can make time for things you want to do and this makes you feel good about yourself.

I found when I was switching off my laptop and doing things I wanted to do, I felt happier and more fulfilled so it’s something I am going to keep on for a couple of nights each week.

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