Home > Bad Behaviors in the Workplace, Productivity Tips > When Do You Feel Most Prepared – Friday or Monday?

When Do You Feel Most Prepared – Friday or Monday?

Happy TGIF – it’s Friday! This is the day that most people look forward to as it’s almost time for the weekend. Time to rest, relax, catch up on chores you didn’t get to do during the week. But is Friday the day you leave everything at work and wait till Monday to get ready for the week or do you have your week already planned out?

I don’t know if there is a right or wrong way to be more productive at work as far as planning goes, but you can either be ready when Monday comes to hit the ground running or you can spend that time once you get in to work. I don’t know about you, but planning the new week at the end of it sounds better to me – it allows me to review the week to see what I got accomplished and what I didn’t so that I can take those unfinished tasks and schedule them out.

Being prepared is the key to getting into action-mode and goal-accomplishment. In his “Stages of Change,” psychologist James Prochaska (1995) found that people pass through six phases before they reach a goal:

  1. Pre-contemplation – recognize a problem may exist but not fully aware of the magnitude; think of getting dressed and your pants feel tighter – you may think they shrunk in the dryer and not because you gained weight
  2. Contemplation – you are now aware of the actual problem and what you’re going to do to resolve it; going on the example above, you stepped on the scale and realized that you weigh 5lbs more (eeks!) and then start to decide how you’re going to lose them so you begin searching for diets and/or exercise programs
  3. Preparation – this is the most important step as you begin to put your plans in place and gather necessary resources; once you’ve decided as to how you’ll lose the weight, you can get resources together to get and keep you motivated. For you diet plan, this might include buying certain foods, a scale to weigh the food, or a food diary to track your calorie intake; if you are exercising, this might include planning out your walking route or gym time, buying new shoes or a new workout outfit
  4. Action – now that you’re fully prepared and know the what, why, where, when and how, you can dig in on the goals you developed
  5. Maintenance/Support – in this step you are continuing on your goals and making progress; if not, you can always seek out resources or people to support you to keep working on your goals. Going back to our example, you began to exercise but found yourself getting discouraged so you might seek out a trainer at the gym to give you accountability
  6. Termination/Relapse – this is the time where you either have reached your goal or you ‘slipped.’ You can always go back and rework the steps. According to Prochaska (1995), some people might need to go through these phases several times before they are successful.

As you can see, preparation is the stage that leads you to goal-achievement and feeling accomplished. I guess you have to ask yourself if you want to start your new work-week as one you look forward to starting and knowing what you need to get done or do you want to spend time at the start of your day – delaying your work – in planning mode. If you want to end your week – so you can have less worry and can enjoy the weekend – try to end the week reviewing, planning and preparing. Which do you prefer?

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