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5 Weekend Career Boosters That Don’t Involve Actual Work

If you read a lot of career advice on the internet, you’ve probably seen several different variations on this theme: don’t work on your days off, whether that’s Saturday/Sunday or in the middle of the week. The reasons behind that advice aren’t complicated: work all the time, and your productivity will diminish, making you less effective and less happy in your career.
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But let’s say that you’re not convinced. You buy into this always-on culture — or you feel that you have no choice but to put in the extra time during your off-hours. If that’s the case, I invite you to consider the idea that by working all weekend long, you might be doing your career a disservice beyond just diminishing returns on productivity. Specifically, you won’t have time to do any of these things — all of which will help your career in long run:

1. Network the Old-Fashioned Way

When is brunch not just a late breakfast? When it’s a networking opportunity. The same goes for the neighborhood block party, your kid’s softball game, or a barbecue. The best networking is the organic kind that happens face-to-face.

2. Get Some Exercise

As the old expression goes, if you haven’t got your health, you haven’t got anything. Ideally, you’d be able to make time for exercise a few days a week, but when things are too busy at work to make that happen, the weekend is a perfect time to get some fresh air and exercise.

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3. Make the Rest of Your Week Easier

Make a week’s worth of meals on Sunday, and forget about daily meal planning for the rest of the week. Coordinate a week’s worth of work clothes, and get ready every morning without worrying about your attire. Look ahead in your day planner and anticipate the snags — and unsnarl them before they can ruin your week. A little planning over the weekend can make your week a whole lot more pleasant.

4. Rest

Remember rest? It’s important. Give yourself a chance to power up again … by powering down for a while.

5. Have Some Fun

Hopefully, you like your job. Maybe you’re lucky enough to love it. But even people who have their dream jobs need to change tracks once in a while. When’s the last time you engaged in a hobby or had an idle conversation with a friend or tried something new? The weekend is a good time for it. You’ll go back to work well-rested and with a fresh perspective.

Tell Us What You Think

How does your time-off enhance your career? We want to hear from you. Tell us your thoughts in the comments or join the conversation on Twitter.

Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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Stephanie Edmonds

Thanks for all of the great ideas!

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