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What to Do With a Day Off

By Tim Herrera | February 15, 2021 | The New York Times

What does a day off even mean right now?

It’s tough to go anywhere during a pandemic, because many of the places we might have visited are closed or restricted to us. It’s hard to dedicate time to tasks like working on your finances with so much uncertainty, and the “recovery” isn’t really a recovery for everyone. And our work lives are encroaching on our personal lives more than ever, so do we really even have days off?

Still, if you’re fortunate enough not to have to clock in today, maybe use the time as an opportunity to take care of some of those things that have been hanging over your head. We all have them, and time away from work is as good an excuse as any to knock that one item off your to-do list. Or not! Maybe today is just a stay-in-bed-and-binge-“Veep”-again kind of day. That sounds absolutely wonderful to me.

Whatever kind of day you have in store, here are some ideas that might be helpful.

Do that one thing you’ve been putting off

Yeah, yeah, you’ll get to it sometime — it’s the little fib we all tell ourselves to get out of doing that one thing. But today is a great day to just get it done! Send that email, finish up that task at home, write that holiday thank-you note you still haven’t gotten around to. Whatever it is, just do it. You’ll feel so much better, I promise.

Brush up on your digital privacy

Is your digital hygiene as strong as it should be? A little extra free time is the perfect excuse to set up that password manager you keep meaning to get to, or to finally install two-step authentication across all of your accounts. A small time investment now can save you enormous headaches — or worse — later.

Do some tiny chores

Being home all of the time has been hard on your house, too.

Consider investing your time in small projects that have big-gratification appeal. None of the five chores mentioned in this article take more than an hour, and each ends with a satisfying thought: Why didn’t I do that sooner? Best of all, unlike the dishes and the bottomless laundry pile, these chores won’t need to be done again for many months.

Catch up on some TV or movies

What better way to spend a day off than sitting on the couch and watching TV?

Cook something great

Why not make these salted pretzel brownies? Or how about meatloaf stroganoff? Maybe you’re in the mood for chickpea vegetable soup?

Do absolutely nothing

Not much more to say here! Give yourself permission to recharge your batteries and get a good night’s sleep. It might even make you more productive at work this week: Allowing the brain to rest and recover “literally makes us more creative, better at problem-solving, better at coming up with creative ideas.”

© 2021 THE NEW YORK TIMES COMPANY

Tim Herrera
The New York Times

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