While it’s easy to spend your Sunday on the couch (or your phone), or frantically trying to get things done before Monday, there are plenty of more restorative ways to spend day. The Spanish have a word for ‘Sunday-ing’, domingueando, which captures all the rituals associated with our favourite day of the week.
Even with the best of intentions to let go and relax at the weekends, many of us find we inadvertently get caught up in chores and busy work that mean we are just as fatigued by the end of the weekend as we were when it began – sometimes more so.
For this reason, the art of Sunday-ing is one to be taken seriously and not left to chance. Sure, we all have obligations – weekday or weekend – but when we put appropriate boundaries around our relaxation time, however little of this time we feel we have available to us, it is much more likely to happen.
Try these tips for planning a slow Sunday and recharge in the spirit of domingueando.
Make the time
Even if you have commitments that would mean a lazy Sunday of sleeping until 10am with nothing more on the agenda than a relaxed brunch is unlikely to say the least, there is usually at least a pocket of time on a Sunday that can be dedicated to life in the slow lane.
From two hours to twenty minutes, whatever time you have, be sure to demarcate it fiercely for domingueando. Make it intentional. Whatever time you have for domingueando, approach it with purpose.
While slumping in front of the television may feel like all you want to do, this is not always very restorative and can simply keep us in a perpetuated state of lethargy. Instead, try a gentle walk, some slow exercise, a long bath, reading a book or another focused activity that is both restful and recuperative. You will feel the benefits of domingueando far more this way.
Make it mutual
If you have a partner or children [or family, or flatmates], the best way to ensure dedicated domingueando time is to involve everyone. This also offers a sense of accountability. When we express to others that we want to incorporate dedicated slowing down time into our week, it is far more likely that we will make this happen. If you live alone, get this accountability by sharing your plans with a friend (like a gym or running partner, but a slowing down partner!).
Make it a habit
Now that you have your time slot, intentional relaxation ritual and you have made yourself accountable to others by sharing your Sunday activity, all that is left is to be sure that this ritual sticks. Set a recurring alert on your phone – and use this as a prompt to switch off your phone for the duration of time you have for domingueando. This way you will be reminded every week to enjoy your own little slice of Sunday slowness.
Extract from The Serenity Passport by Megan C Hayes, published by White Lion Publishing, distributed by Allen & Unwin, RRP $27.99