We’ve all heard the quote, ‘a Sunday well spent brings a week of content’ but to be honest, when I was younger I always thought that just meant I should enjoy my Sunday and it would mean I’d be happy for the whole week. Oh young naive me…
Now I realize that it’s actually the things you do, the preparation, the Sunday habits, that actually bring you a week of content – aka not running around like a madwoman who is overwhelmed trying to spin all the plates, drinking cold coffee, and showing up late to everything… (who… me??).
This is why we need habits.
Routines help with this (I love a good routine), but to keep things a little more simple, you can start with some easy Sunday habits that will set you up for a productive week with less overwhelm, more calm, and more ‘content’.
Sunday Habits For Productivity
You don’t have to add in all of these habits… actually, if you were you’d probably end up spending all of your Sunday just ticking off this list. Instead, just pick one or two things that resonate with you and work on those.
Then, once you have them down pat, you can add another habit to your Sunday if you’d like. Keep going adding new habits until you’re happy with your routine.
Here are some Sunday habits you can start that will help you have a more productive week:
1 – Create Your Own Sunday Routine
Sunday is such an overlooked day, but it can be a game-changer when it comes to creating a peaceful and productive week. Create a Sunday routine that suits your lifestyle and your needs to help you relax, feel rejuvenated, and prepare for the upcoming week.
I find it easier to break my routine down into sections of the day (morning, day, afternoon/evening, night) but you might find it easier to create routines around different areas (health, food, self-care, family time etc).
Having a routine also means you don’t have to think as much about your day, and adding in some of these Sunday habits to your routine will also mean you’re much more likely to stick with it.
2 – Meal Plan For The Upcoming Week
I resisted meal planning for so long but the truth is… it works.
Making meal planning one of your Sunday habits will be one of the biggest time-saving tasks you could do. It’s such a simple task – and it only takes around 10 minutes.
It means you don’t have to think about what you’re going to make for dinner each night, you can look to the week ahead and plan for any nights you’re going to be late, or have other commitments, and you can even plan for cooking double batches so you can freeze and store meals in advance.
While you’re meal planning, be sure to write out your shopping list so you can grab your groceries for the week.
We also find that when we plan meals in advance we end up eating more healthy meals and spend less money on food. Win/win.
I put our meal plan up on the fridge too so when the kids ask for the 129347 time “what’s for dinner….?” I can just tell them to look at the fridge.
3 – Do Your Grocery Shopping (Online If You Can)
If you’re the kind of person who loves going to the grocery store, then you may not be keen on shopping online.
However, if you’re like me and the thought of grocery shopping makes you want to tear your hair out, then online shopping might be your best friend.
I get so stressed grocery shopping, even more so if I have to do it with kids in tow. So shopping online has been the best thing ever.
Bonus points if you’ve written out your grocery list while you were meal planning (super productive winner right there) – this makes the online shopping part way easier, and helps you keep focused when grocery shopping in-store.
4 – Spend Some Time Meal Prepping
Meal prepping is a little different from meal planning. This is where you either prepare all or some of your meals in advance.
You can even batch and prepare breakfasts and lunches too.
If you’re super keen, you can cook all of your meals ready for the week, in the correct portion sizes, and have them frozen or in the fridge ready to go (just make sure you check food safety guidelines so you don’t make yourself sick).
Otherwise, you can prepare some parts of your meals. Perhaps you can chop some veggies ready to go, pre-cook the meat component of your meal, or bag up all the ingredients you want to add to a smoothie and freeze them ready for the week ahead.
Sometimes this doesn’t work on a Sunday, but I might find on a night during the week I can prep for the following night by chopping veggies at the same time, and putting everything in a pot ready to go (usually the slow cooker) for the next day.
5 – Outline Important Tasks For The Week
Outlining and making specific notes of the important tasks you have coming up for the week can help you keep focused on getting the most important things done first.
You can go one step further and create a grading system that orders the importance of your tasks from 1 – 4, with 1 being the absolute most important thing that needs to get done, and 4 being more of an ‘if you have time’ task.
6 – Look Over The Past Week & Plan For Anything That Was Missed
It’s not often that every little thing we plan for happens in our week, so taking the time to look over the previous week in your calendar or planner can help you spot anything you may have missed, and give you a chance to add it to the upcoming week.
This is great to pick up on those things that you say ‘oh, I’ll get to that another day’ and then you forget about altogether (and by you, I mean me…).
7 – Prepare Your Weekly Planner For The Following Week
Taking some time on a Sunday to prepare your planner for the upcoming week helps you keep on top of things and can help you avoid missing things that can easily go under the radar.
Preparing for your week can be the difference between a great week, and one where you’re always feeling like you’re behind.
This is usually the time I go over the school emails too and make sure I’ve got any events, activities, or notices covered.
8 – Have A Slow Start To Your Sunday Morning
While it may be tempting to launch yourself out of bed first thing on a Sunday morning and get stuck into a day of self-care and preparation for the upcoming week, try instead to have a slower start to your morning.
This doesn’t mean a complete standstill, it might just mean you plan your slow and quiet tasks for the morning (meditation, time outside, a nice walk) and leave your prep and organizing to the afternoon.
It might also mean that your kids watch a movie first thing in the morning so you can take a little extra time to yourself. It’s worth it.
9 – Get Some Fresh Air
Spending time outdoors is always a great way to center yourself and give you a boost of energy, not to mention the huge physical and mental health benefits it has too.
Plan to spend some of your Sunday outdoors, whether it’s while you drink your coffee in the morning, heading out for lunch with friends, or even a walk in the fresh air.
Take the kids to the park, or get out in your backyard, and let them run around in the fresh air too! It’s good for everyone.
10 – Do A Load Of Laundry (or more)
I don’t think anyone actually likes doing laundry, but keeping on top of your washing is a good idea (even if we don’t like it).
Sundays are a great day to start a habit of catching up on all of your washing and preparing your clothes for the week. Hopefully, this habit can mean you spend less time rushing around trying to find your clothes (which pile did they end up in…) and more time doing whatever you’d rather do.
If I’m feeling SUPER organized, I’ll also get the school uniforms ready for the week so I don’t have to think about them of a morning.
11 – Delete Any Junk Mail From Your Email
We all know how frustrating that little red notification bubble is that shows us how many unread emails we have… (I know it’s not just me).
If you create a habit of clearing out all the junk and any emails you don’t need from your inbox each week, it will be a lot more manageable.
12 – Have Healthy Foods Ready For Snacks
This healthy habit is one you might get frustrated with at the time, but will thank yourself for later.
When we get snacky, we tend to reach for the high sugar, high carb, high salt foods for that instant gratification. But, this is actually a great opportunity to keep some nutritious food handy so you can snack away without the quick highs and deep lows that come with less nutritious food.
Prep some healthy snacks on a Sunday and you’ll be set for the week.
13 – Spend Some Time Doing Self Care
We’ve all heard of self-care Sunday, but how often do you actually do it? Productive people put themselves first, and this is one way to do that.
Self-care can mean a lot of different things to different people, so find something that works for you and make sure you take some time for it each and every Sunday.
Some great, low-cost, and simple self-care ideas include a face mask, bubble bath, reading a book with a good coffee, journaling, or anything that makes you happy and feel refreshed.
Plus, it’s a great way to spend your Sunday afternoon.
14 – Spend Quality Time With Friends/Family
Sundays are the perfect opportunity to spend quality time with friends or family. Our weeks can get so busy and so chaotic that it’s easy to overlook time for family or friends and before you know it, weeks go by without a proper catch-up.
Make it a habit to have a gathering on a Sunday!
Whether it’s inviting friends over for a Sunday barbeque or including a Sunday Roast in your family life rituals, making time to connect and spend quality time with friends and/or family on a Sunday can be a great habit to create.
15 – Check In On Your Finances
I know the last thing you probably want to do is deal with your finances, especially on a day of rest and rejuvenation, but taking a few moments to review your finances and check over your bank account as part of a Sunday habit can help set you up for a great week.
By checking in on your finances at the end of the week, you can prepare yourself for the week ahead, know exactly where you stand, what money is supposed to come out, what money is expected to come in, and avoid any nasty financial surprises that could leave you stressed and overwhelmed.
16 – Create A Clean Space
Another great idea is to use Sunday to create a clean space in your home.
You don’t have to deep clean your entire home, but perhaps choose one area of your home to focus on, and spend 30-60 minutes creating a clean space in that area.
This will help you feel productive, in control of your space, while also not making you feel like you’re spending your whole Sunday cleaning your home.
17 – Take A Break From Social Media
While you might be tempted to post your #SundaySelfCare on Instagram, why not make Sundays your social media free day?
Social media has such a big impact on our mental health, and often we don’t even realize it.
From spiking our cortisol (stress hormone) to dysregulating our dopamine (feel good & addiction hormone), social media can cause all kinds of emotional, hormonal, and physical effects in our bodies.
Challenge yourself to make Sundays your social media free day – only good things can happen from this.
18 – Do Something Creative
When was the last time you showed off your creative flair (and before you say you’re not creative, we all are, we are all just creative in different ways).
Why not use Sundays as an opportunity to do something creative, even if it’s just for 10-15 minutes?
Draw, write, paint, bake, knit, build, sew, film, photograph… – the options are endless.
Creativity is a great way to express yourself and can be really soothing and satisfying. And you never know, you might just find a new hobby you absolutely love!
19 – Spend Time Journaling
Journaling is such a beautiful way to take time out to connect with your own thoughts, and to take an intentional and mindful moment to actually reflect on where you are, and what you’re doing.
If you’re not sure where to start with journaling, or find it hard to know what to write, use some journaling prompts to get you started.
And if you’re like me, it’s a great excuse to buy a cute new notebook and take some time for yourself to drink your coffee and just reflect.
20 – Prepare Your Outfits For The Week
How much time do you spend each day sifting through your clothes trying to find something to wear? Let alone trying to find something that makes you feel good, that’s clean, and that is ironed or at least doesn’t look like you grabbed it from the bottom of your closet?
Get into the habit of spending a little time each Sunday to prepare your outfits for the week. Make sure they’re cleaned, ironed, and ready to go. This is even easier if you’ve created a capsule wardrobe for yourself.
It might take an hour but it will save you at least double that amount of time during the week (and save a ton of brainpower too).
21 – Review Your Goals And Big Plans
Are you on track to achieve your goals? What have you been doing to work towards them?
Sunday is the perfect time to check in with your goals, especially as you prepare yourself for the week ahead.
What are you going to do this week that moves you a step closer to your goals?
22 – Get To Bed Early
One of the best things you can do to ensure you have a productive week is to get enough sleep! While it might be tempting to stay up late and get as much out of the weekend as you can, you’ll feel so much better having had a good restful sleep.
Get to bed early, read a book in bed or spend time journaling, or write your to do list for the next day (stay off social media) and enjoy the early bedtime.
23 – Prepare For Your Monday Morning
What can you do today that will help make your Monday morning easier?
Can you get your breakfast ready (did you meal prep) put your clothes out ready (did you get your outfits ready for the week) do you need to fuel up your car or recharge your laptop battery?
Make a habit of doing something on a Sunday that ‘Monday you’ is going to be incredibly grateful for.
While this seems like a huge list of habits, remember you don’t have to do them all.
Pick a few off this list that resonates with you and start creating your new Sunday Habits this week. See how these habits fit and if they don’t feel right, try a different habit until you curate the perfect Sunday for yourself.