Amy Rees Anderson

Have Something To Look Forward To!

“People who say that life is not worthwhile are really saying that they themselves have no personal goals which are worthwhile. Get yourself a goal worth working for. Better still, get yourself a project. Always have something ahead of you to “look forward to“, to work for and hope for.” (Maxwell Malz). 

I don’t know about all of you but I have noticed a very interesting phenomenon at my house that has a direct correlation to something that could help us in our work lives and our home lives.  It is this – when my family plans ahead to do something fun on an upcoming Saturday, for example, I have noticed that we somehow find a way during the week to get all of our normal “Saturday” chores done during the week itself, laundry is done, bedrooms are cleaned, and homework is handled – all before Saturday comes. Then when Saturday arrives we are up bright and early ready to hit a day of fun together. Now, contrast that when the opposite case exists. If we have nothing planned for our Saturday then when Saturday morning arrives we all sleep in, wasting a good portion of our day. Our chores are not handled and our laundry is sitting around waiting to be done. Then we spend our Saturday handling things that we feel would have been impossible to handle during the week. How is it that when we have something exciting we want to be available for on the Saturday that we magically find a way to get everything done during the week and we are magically able to jump out of bed early Saturday morning all bright eyed and bushy tailed and excited for our day? Not only that, but during the week we found ourselves more driven and happy as we knocked everything out that had to get done because we knew that by doing so we would make ourselves available for the fun time on Saturday that we were looking forward to, so it didn’t even feel that burdensome to get everything handled that week?

I have decided that it was all about the motivation and inspiration that comes from being excited about an upcoming event or activity that gave us the extra spark to get more accomplished in more organized fashion. When we are excited about something we look forward to it really helps to lighten our mood and helps to shoulder the weight of the responsibilities that we carry. You see, the week wasn’t easier or longer than normal, but we were more excited and enthusiastic about accomplishing our tasks so we could have our reward that weekend.

When I look at what I learned from this experience I realized that I could use this same magic trick that gets my entire family fired up and going to apply to my work life. If I plan something fun for myself or my family for the weekend then I am more motivated to accomplish all of my work so I don’t have to do any emails or spreadsheets over the weekend. And we don’t have to plan something expensive in any way, just something that will be on our calendars for us to look forward to all week. So I have challenged my own family to sit down every Sunday night and plan ahead for the upcoming Saturday with some sort of fun activity that we can all look forward to during the week and that we can all use as a motivator to get our things done. I think it is a good habit to get into and I would challenge everyone to try it with their own families. Like I said, it can be any activity that will give you something to be excited about. Maybe it’s just watching a movie that is coming out that week, or going for a hike or a walk, or taking a road trip for the day, etc. Anything that makes you feel excited and happy all week.

The weekend is almost here!  CHERISH IT!  And when the weekend is over, plan something in your life to look forward to for next week and then watch how productive it makes you all week long!


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