Summer Friday is a trend that typically gives employees half days off or flex hours on Fridays during the summer. If your office offers Summer Fridays, you may be wondering what you're going to do with a few hours of extra time added to your weekend. While it may be tempting to pack up a beach bag and go on a trip for a few days, you may currently be stuck at home. Here are some things you can do to make your Summer Friday relaxing and enjoyable, no matter where you are.
During colder months, there is not as much of a draw to get out of the office early on Fridays. There are fewer options for socializing due to the weather and the earlier sunset, which makes the day seem shorter and less eventful. But Fridays in summer are exciting, especially in the afternoon. The sun is out and the breeze feels warm against sandaled feet.
One way to use the allotted Summer Friday hours when working from home is to have an outdoor picnic in the patio or on the porch. If you have a backyard with ample space, you can prepare a variety of lunch foods and desserts, and lay it all out on a large towel to enjoy with the family. Live in an apartment? No problem. You can still take advantage of the outdoors after work by packing food in a lunchbox and finding a nearby park or empty patch of grass to enjoy your lunch.
There’s something fun about unwinding on a Summer Friday. After you've already closed your laptop and changed from your professional top into your most comfortable tunic top, you are ready to explore some weekend activities. If you haven't had a movie night yet, why not try that?
If you live with your family, a significant other, or roommates, planning for a movie night is something fun and interactive that can be built into a weekly activity. Create a rotation so that each person has a turn to pick out something to watch. Pick out outfits to dress up in that are similar to the ones the characters wear. Prepare themed snacks or refreshments that are significant to the movie. Write down some predictions or discussion points to talk about after watching the movie. Having some time left over on a Friday allows you to plan ahead and consider fun activities to jump-start your weekend.
Having the chance to go sign off early, freshen up, and spend quality time with loved ones makes a Summer Friday all that much more to look forward to. It's important to nurture these aspects of your life and create a healthy work/life balance. Especially if you have family and friends who live in a different time zone, using a Summer Friday to reconnect and have a meal together is a great way to start the weekend.
Consider making a date of it! Put on your most stylish cotton cardigan and jeans, and do other necessary things that will help you feel ready for a Friday afternoon of catching up. Having the extra time means being able to share a meal together, play some virtual games, or just enjoy one another's company.
This head start on the weekend makes it possible to do errands you don’t need to take time off for, such as going to the grocery store, visiting the doctor, and going to the bank. While running errands on the weekend may mean crowded stores and long lines, this is not always the case on Friday afternoon during the workday. You can take advantage of the extra time to tick off some items from the weekend checklist and even leave room to browse online for the fit and flare dress you've always wanted but haven't had time to buy.
Instead of burning through your vacation and personal days, having a Summer Friday allows for time to have an automatic long weekend. So why not use that extra time to plan for a mini-staycation and do some activities you either wouldn't do on the weekend or make time for the activities you love most?
Love the outdoors? Go for a rigorous hike to a peak you haven't climbed yet. Or find a park or an outdoor garden that you haven't explored yet and take a long stroll. If you'd rather use the Summer Friday time to stay indoors, curl up on the couch, wrap yourself in your favorite throw blanket, and do an activity that makes you happy. Read that novel that you keep saying you'll get to, or watch that show that you've been meaning to catch up on but haven't had time over the weekend. If you enjoy cooking during your staycation, try out some new recipes.
Whether your Summer Friday involves enjoying the outdoors or doing more of your favorite things, using this time more freely and planning in advance can release a lot of tension and be a motivator to put in your very best effort into the earlier part of the workweek.