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How to use Sunday to prep for Monday

A small family of three sits together around a kitchen counter.

Everyone loves a Sunday fun-day, right? How about trying to get more out of your Sunday by setting yourself up for a majorly productive and successful week?

1. Compile a weekly to-do list

Every Sunday, look at the week ahead and write down the things you want and need to accomplish — for school, work, home and the kids. Be realistic. You’ll ensure things get done and tamp down stress in the process. Separate the Monday to-dos somehow — a different color ink, a separate list — so it’s clear what to focus on tomorrow. And be specific, too. Try "Read through chapter 5 for Intro to Psych," not "Study."

2. Conquer the clothes

Get the laundry washed, folded and put away. Pick tomorrow’s outfit and as many outfits as you can for the week — you can always switch things up if the mood strikes and time permits. While you’re at it, make sure the kids have tomorrow’s outfits ready, too. No one wants to spend precious Monday morning time tearing through drawers looking for a favorite shirt.

3. Clean out and re-stock your go-to bags

Go through all regular tote-alongs such as your purse, laptop bag, gym bag and/or diaper bag. Toss or file receipts, remove unnecessary books and get those stinky workout/kid clothes into the laundry stat. Now, re-stock with Monday’s necessities — study aids, snacks, refilled toiletries — whatever makes them grab-and-go ready.

4. Pick up

Do your best to tidy up your home nightly, of course, but if (ahem: when) that doesn’t work, make Sunday the day you definitely declutter and reset. Make it a family project. It’s somehow both calming and energizing starting the week with a cleared-off kitchen counter, an empty sink and everything in its place.

5. Get a food plan

Draw up your meal plan for the week. You’ll eliminate the nightly stress of throwing something together, and likely eat healthier in the process. Include lunches and snacks for all adults and kids. Quickly clean out the fridge, and stock it with your Monday meal and snack prep. Bonus points if you get the shopping and prep done for later in the week, too.

6. Chill (Sunday fun-day style)

Set aside at least an hour to do something that makes you feel really good. Go to the gym. Watch a movie with the kids. Meditate. Read with a glass of wine. Consider it essential mental health time to help you de-stress in preparation for conquering the busy week ahead.

Whether you organize every last detail of your life or just get one dish put away, accomplishing something on Sunday and setting your intentions toward a productive week can really be the key to success. Start slow and build healthy Sunday habits over the next few months.


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