Let’s be honest, most of us are not always on top of our stuff. I constantly feel like I’m running out of time and rushing to get things done - Procrastination Station Over Here! But, there is always something unexpected that comes up; a random meeting popping onto the work calendar, going in for an oil change and leaving with something else broken, or a friend calling in a crisis – life loves to throw these curve balls at us, as if it's not crazy enough already. To top it off, there’s cooking!
Don’t get me wrong, I love finding new recipes and trying new foods, but sometimes, the work that goes into it – cough cough, washing all the dishes – can make cooking a pretty daunting task come dinner time. So, how do we make it easier on ourselves? You guessed it, meal prepping! I’m sure by now, you all know what meal prepping is and how to do it, but maybe haven’t really considered it. Truthfully, my first impressions of it were first off, ‘how boring! Who wants to eat the same thing every day all week?’ and second, ‘who the heck just has a three plus hour block of time to just cook?’ So what made me start meal prepping finally? Drum roll please... It actually ended up saving me time and allowed me to be more productive! (are we really surprised though?)
While there may be a lot of dishes initially each week, you’ll be thankful during the work week to have one less thing to worry about. Who wants to spend time after work doing the dishes – not me! Between work, working out, appointments, chores and errands to run, it already feels like there isn’t enough time during the week. Give yourself some time freedom during the week to do the things that fulfill you to avoid burnout.
No more walking into the kitchen post-workout and aimlessly looking in the fridge, then the freezer, the cupboards and back to the fridge again. By planning out meals ahead of time, you cut out the decision-making time when it comes time to actually eat, saving time.
Enjoy the Shower
Less time spent cooking and even thinking about cooking is the perfect opportunity to fit some self care into the busy week! Take a little longer shower and really enjoy it. Try adding a LOMA’s Deep Conditioner or a hair mask to your midweek shower routine to give your locks some freshness and hydration to make it through the rest of the week.
Eating the right foods
What we eat directly impacts our energy and how we feel each day. Meal prepping means planning ahead of time to make sure we eat healthy and get the right nutrients to fuel the body and be more productive. No more – or at least less – last minute runs through the drive through.
Hang out with my friends
More time to hang out with friends! Now, this might be a bit of a stretch, but I strongly believe meaningful time spent with treasured friends and family boosts productivity. Hanging out with loved ones helps us cope with stress, boost happiness and improve self-worth and confidence. Being lonely and filled to the brim with negative stress can make many of us shut down mentally. Think of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs – feelings of accomplishment and self-actualization only come after our sense of belonging has been met.
Read/Join a book club
That hour you would have spent cooking and cleaning up on Thursday night is now yours to use as you like! Why not feed your brain a little and enjoy a new book? Reading increases brain connectivity, increases your vocabulary, and aids in sleep readiness – in other words, more productivity! (Not sure where to buy books these days? McNally Jackson is an independent bookstore who’s partnered with Reach Out & Read to provide children with books and keep kids reading!)
Take up a new hobby
Maybe you’ve been wanting to try out painting or sewing or whatever it may be, now there’s a little extra time each day to fit it in. Even though it's just a little more time each day, you’d be surprised how much more your brain and muscle memory will retain by learning a new hobby in this way. So test out some new hobbies you’ve been interested in and find what you love. Learning something new promotes being present in the moment and reduces stress and gives us a productive break from work and daily tasks.
When it comes down to it, meal prepping isn’t just another health fad, but a way to free up time so you put more energy and time into the things that make you happy. In turn, a healthy, happy, fulfilled life boosts productivity and allows us to flourish. For more products to support living your best life, click here.