You know all those annoying little life tasks that aren’t directly related to the goals you want to accomplish, but they need to be done anyway because you are a human living on earth? Things like laundry, emails, taxes, booking appointments, dying your hair, returning library books, yada yada yada? If you’re anything like me, those things kind of just get put off indefinitely until eventually it becomes dire enough that you can’t keep ignoring it. But until they eventually get done (or completely ignored) these tasks take up valuable brain real estate and make you feel like crap because you haven’t done it yet and don’t have any idea when you will do it. These tasks are the reason that you feel like you don’t have your life together. This is why you need to be doing a Sunday Reset.
The Sunday Reset is inspired by concepts from two of my favorite YouTubers, Kalyn Nicholson’s GYSTing and MuchelleB’s Life Admin Day. The basic idea in both cases is to choose a day where all those little annoying tasks get done, so you know that you have a day set aside to do all of the tasks you need to get done to keep your life running smoothly. Think of yourself like a business. During your Sunday Reset, you do all of the things that a housekeeper and secretary would do in a business so that you can be the CEO during the rest of the week.
I call it a Reset because it gets everything that has fallen apart during the week back in order so that you can start the new week fresh and ready to go. The more you do on Sunday to prepare yourself for the upcoming week, the more smoothly the rest of your week will go. If you can get things lined up for the rest of the week on Sunday, you won’t have to spend tiny chunks of time every day doing all those small things that keep your life together. It’s all about efficiency. We want to create as many large blocks of time as we can so that you can use them to work toward your goals and do things that serve you. Getting all of the housekeeping out of the way in one fell swoop leaves you free to go after your goals.
Think of your Sunday Reset like the weekly version of a morning routine. Morning routines set you up to have the best and most productive day that you can. The Sunday Reset gets all of the annoying crap out of the way so that you can actually use your time during the week to go after your dream life. Set yourself up for success.
Your first few Sunday Resets are going to be a bit bigger and take a bit longer than the rest. Also, obviously, if Sunday isn’t a good day for you, do your reset on a different day. Sunday is just what works best for me. I recommend starting your first Sunday Reset day with a brain dump. Write down everything you can think of that needs to be done but isn’t specifically related to a different goal you’re working on. Stuff like cleaning out the trunk of your car, watering your houseplants, and cleaning your bedroom go on this list.
Next, spend the day completing as many of these tasks as possible. Do them one at a time, don’t start seven of them without actually completing any of them. Depending on what aligns better with your personality, start either with something small and easy, like dusting the shelves, so you get some momentum to get you going, or start with the thing you’re dreading most, like doing your taxes, so the hard stuff is out of the way. Though typically, the stuff you’re dreading ends up being easier than you thought it would be.
Your first couple Sunday Reset days will be a bit more substantial than the rest. You’ll likely have a backlog of chores built up that will need to be accomplished. This is fine. Just do what you can the first few times until all those extra, one off tasks are out of the way. After that, you’ll start to have a better idea of which tasks will show up again and again on your to do list so that they can just be scheduled specifically for your Reset day.
One of the benefits of knowing that you have a Reset day scheduled is that any random tasks that pop up during the week, like maybe a phone call you need to make, or light bulb that burns out and needs to be changed, can be added to your to do list for your Reset day. Since you know that there’s a specific time already set aside to do that task, there’s no pressure to do it right when it pops up. This means you won’t need to break your focus from whatever you’re currently working on to get it done. It also means that the task actually will get done at some point, since you already have time set aside for doing things like that. Just be sure to keep a list of things that need to be done during your Sunday Reset so that you actually remember to do them.
To get you started, here’s a list of 25 things that you could potentially schedule into your weekly Reset, either as a one off task or as something that occurs every week.
Water house plants
Go through the fridge and clean out old food that isn’t going to be eaten
Plan meals for the week and create a shopping list
Swap out all of the towels in the house for clean ones
Book appointments (doctor, dentist, hair, nails, classes at the gym, etc.)
Schedule out the rest of your week
Return library books
Go through the week’s mail
Reach out to friends to schedule plans for the week
Plan out outfits for the week
Pack for or unpack from an upcoming or past trip
Clean off that surface in your home that always seems to collect random junk
Change your sheets
Reply to less important emails
Review the budget
Do a hair mask
Mow the lawn
Clean the bathroom
Clean out your car
Put away all those random items that got left out throughout the week
My personal Sunday Reset list is ever-evolving. It’s recently started to finally stabilize into roughly the same list of tasks every week as I’ve come to a slightly more predictable patch in my life. Feel free to use my list as inspiration for yours and to see how Sunday Resets can set you up for a better week without actually being all that much work.
Typically, I kick off my Reset with a very thorough shower. Not that I don’t shower during the week, but as someone with big, curly hair that is a hassle to wash, Sunday is hair washin’ day. Sunday showers include washing my hair, as well as removing any body hair that I want gone. I also typically pamper myself with lotions and scrubs to make the experience more luxurious and enjoyable. Weekday showers are purely utilitarian. Sunday showers are a chance to treat myself.
Once I’m all clean and ready to go, I’ll throw a load of laundry in the washing machine while I go about other things that need to be done. Since laundry takes a while to do but doesn’t involve all that much actual effort, it’s a good thing to start early so that your clothes get clean while you’re doing other stuff.
After the first load of laundry is in, I’ll spend twenty minutes or so walking around the apartment and cleaning up any random stuff that got left out during the week. This primarily consists of dishes left on nightstands and coffee tables, clothes that I’ve left on the floor, and blankets that have migrated around the apartment. We run our Roomba on Mondays, so I also put away anything that’s sitting on the floor.
Next, I’ll do just a bit of meal prepping for the week. I’ve discovered that a full on weekly meal prep doesn’t work for me because I like to cook. Too often, I’ve prepared something for the week, only to decide that I actually want to cook something else most nights, and my meal prepped food ends up in the freezer.
I do know that I like to have my lunches for the week figured out so they’re easy to grab and go. Most of the time, I’ll make some variation of beans and rice in our instant pot. Occasionally, I’ll make sandwiches or roasted vegetables and tofu. I also make sure I have fruit that is easy to grab and eat, whether it’s bananas, apples, or grapes that I’ve pre-washed and put into containers. For me, this level of meal prep leaves me the freedom to cook when I want to cook, and to still have something already prepared ready when I need it. If meal prepping interests you, experiment with it until you find what works best for you.
At some point in the afternoon, I like to sit down and go through my emails. I’ll keep an eye on my inbox during the week and delete any junk and reply to anything important, but there are always those emails that do require action or a more thorough read but aren’t important enough when you get them to take action in that moment. Those get saved for Sunday. I do my best to get my inbox as close to zero as possible, deleting as much as I can and taking action on the emails that need it.
During my Sunday reset, I also do any of those weird one off tasks that have popped up during the week. Usually this is stuff like the occasional piece of snail mail that I actually have to do something about, or scheduling any appointments that I need to take care of. Knowing that I’ll get these things done during my Sunday Reset keeps them off of my mind during the week, and lets me go to into the new week with a clean slate.
Most of the time, I’ll wind down my Sunday Reset by folding laundry. Because folding laundry is a mindless task, I can throw on a YouTube video or Netflix show that I’ve been meaning to watch, sit on the floor, and zone out for a bit while still getting something productive done.
If I’m in the mood for it, I’ll finish my Reset by doing my nails or putting on a face mask. Sunday evenings are a great time for me to pamper myself a bit so that I’m feeling ready and ambitious going into the week ahead. At the end of the day on Sunday, the aim is to have nothing left on my to do list, have as many things as possible already prepared for the week ahead, and to be relaxed and ready to go into the next week and tackle my goals.
All of these things are spread out in between other Sunday activities that I enjoy doing. Throughout the day, I’ll blog, or hang out with Bennett, or go to the library or whatever in between doing my Sunday Reset tasks. I personally don’t mind spreading it all out over the course of the day, but if it works better for you, feel free to do it all in one two or three hour chunk. Maybe you spend your Sunday morning getting ready for the week and have the rest of the day to yourself.
Sunday Resets/GYST Days/Life Admin Days provide that push we need to do those little tasks that too often fall through the cracks. They’re the difference between having our life together and feeling it’s all falling apart. Intentionally scheduling a time each week to do the administrative tasks that keep the rest of your life running smoothly takes you from struggling to get through each day doing the bare minimum to actually have the time and organization to go after your best life. Most of us run around frantically doing random tasks in order to try to keep our shit together because we were never taught to regularly schedule in a specific time to get all of this stuff done. That’s why I’m here with the Sunday Reset. Now go get your life together.