They don’t call it “work” for nothing — any job can be taxing on your mental and physical health. It’s important to take a day off every once in a while to minimise burnout and give yourself a chance to recharge. When was the last time you treated yourself to a day off? To make the most of your personal time, here are 13 fun things to do on the cheap:
1. Go for a Bike Ride
If you’ve been meaning to fit more exercise into your schedule but can’t find the time, use your day off to pull the bike out of the garage and take a ride around the neighbourhood. If you are looking for a bigger adventure, pick a new and exciting route from the National Cycle Network.
2. Visit a Museum
There’s nothing like a little creativity to balance out all of the analytical thinking you do at work. Many museums host special free days or days with discounted admission. Whether you’re interested in fine art or artefacts, sports or science, there is sure to be a museum that fits your interests.
3. Make an Elaborate Dessert
There are probably recipes you’ve seen for delightful treats, but you freeze up when you see the long list of steps and dozens of required ingredients. On your day off, you’ll have plenty of time to go through all the steps and follow the recipe at your own pace. Plus, there’s a very sweet reward at the end for all your hard work.
4. Have a Picnic With Friends
Most of your friends will be working while you’re relaxing, so why not convince your best buddy to take the day off with you! Or you have a friend that works odd hours and is hard to visit with, make time for them on your day off. Find a park and plan a picnic! Enjoy the sunshine and celebrate over lunch in the park.
5. Have a Mini-Staycation
When was the last time you explored your own town? Think like a tourist and try out your new perspective as you take yourself out around town. Window shop and take a stroll through the park. Savour an espresso or people watch from a bench!
6. Practice Your Photography Skills
Have an interest in taking pictures? Grab your camera and find a photogenic area that’s perfect for snapping the day away. Challenge yourself to think outside the box — when you go to take a picture the way you normally do, consider how you could frame it differently or use a completely different angle than what your intuition tells you.
7. Treat Yourself to an At-Home Spa Day
If you don’t want to leave the house on your day off, don’t! Instead, run a nice warm bath overflowing with bubbles. Pour a glass of wine, light a few candles and let the soothing suds dissolve all of your troubles — at least for a few hours. You can also give yourself a manicure and pedicure, starting with this DIY sugar body scrub.
8. Have a Movie Marathon
Pick up a few DVDs at your local video store — or borrow free copies from your local library — and settle in on the sofa with junk food as you enjoy some of Hollywood’s best.
9. Tend to Your Garden
If you’ve been neglecting your garden, give your flora the TLC they need and deserve. Don’t have one? Now is a great time to start. If you have a large garden or even a small space, we have year-round gardening tips customised to your garden space.
10. Clean the House
This isn’t the most fabulous way to spend your personal day, but when life gets out of hand, it’s your job to whip it back into shape. Go the extra mile and concentrate on areas you might normally overlook.
11. Catch Up on Errands
So many of us have long to-do lists that don’t seem to get done during the workweek because there’s just not enough time. On your day off, choose to tackle these errands so you can relax a bit more on the weekend.
12. Visit a Bookstore
You don’t have to buy any books. Instead, pick up a few magazines, buy a cup of coffee and spend a few hours reading the latest celebrity gossip.
13. Rearrange Your Furniture
If you want to introduce change to your home but can’t afford a major renovation, try moving furniture, artwork and other items around the house to give it a fresh feel.
Even if it’s in the middle of the week, take time off for yourself — you won’t regret missing that one meeting, but you may regret not giving yourself a chance to rest and refocus!