After a stressful day at a nine to five job, many people want nothing more than to netflix and chill. Maybe order some food and kick back and relax for the evening. Even though this probably sounds like a great evening routine to the majority of people, in reality our evenings should be spent bettering ourselves and our lives. How we spend our time outside of work can actually affect how we act and feel at our jobs, and in the end affect our overall productivity throughout the day. Though it may seem like yet another to-do list, here are six things you can do in the evening after a long day at work that will actually make you a more productive person.
Do an activity you love
Whether you love a gentle yoga practice, reading fiction, taking a bubble bath, or even watching an episode of your favorite show (but just one!), engage in an activity that makes you happy right after work. Set the mood for the evening by doing just one simple thing you love every day.
Don’t bring your work home
This may be extremely difficult for some people depending on their jobs, but do your best to leave work at work. Your home life should not be spent buried in paperwork or working on your laptop all evening, especially if you have children or a spouse to spend time with. A great way to avoid this is by having a work phone and a home phone if possible, and leaving the work phone behind when you leave for the day. Spend your evening doing what you love with those you love.
Make a plan for tomorrow
Each evening, it’s a good idea to look forward and set a plan for the next day. Even if you just write a list of three to-do items, or write down an attainable goal that you would like to achieve. Another great morning time-saver that you can do in the evening is laying your clothes out for the morning, or packing your lunch for the next day.
Engage in light exercise
Strenuous exercise is better in the morning or early afternoon, but engaging in light exercise in the evening before bed can actually help your mind and body relax. Going for a walk, a light jog, or practicing yoga puts our minds at ease and prepares us for a restful night’s sleep.
Read and/or journal
Reading not only calms our minds, but gives us new knowledge that can allow us to solve problems in our everyday lives. Journaling is also a great way to reflect on the day – even just scribbling down three things that you are grateful for is a beneficial evening practice.
Limit screen time before bed
Do your best to keep your bedroom a screen-free zone. It has been proven that staring at a screen – whether it is your phone or laptop or television – causes the brain to fire off dopamine, making it very difficult to sleep. So one hour before bed do your best to turn your phone on silent, turn off the television, close your laptop, and even face your alarm clock away from your bed!