What does the weekend mean for you? When Friday rolls around each week, what’s your reason for saying ‘Thank God It’s Friday’? (TGIF)

For many leaders TGIF means a well needed rest from the week we have just experienced. The chance to get away from everything behind us. But what if we chose to view our weekend as a well needed rest for the week we are about to experience? The opportunity to invest in ourselves for everything ahead of us? It’s a small but valuable reframe. Why?

Because we all approach preparation differently to how we approach recovery. 

When I ran the Marathon de Paris in 2013, the couple of days before I ran looked very different to couple of days after. After the race all I wanted was a wine and a croissant. But before the race I thought intentionally about how I trained and spent each day. I looked after myself to prevent injuries. I thought about the food I was eating and the mindsets I was allowing. I didn’t view the time spent on me as selfish – it was smart. I knew that if I wanted to give my best, I needed to be my best.  

There isn’t anything wrong with recovery. It’s actually important. But it’s not a helpful way to live life from week to week.

When weekends are used for preparation– our time is intentional, rest is no longer optional and taking the space to invest in yourself becomes critical. It becomes less about zoning out from the world and more about tuning in to what you most need. We don’t spend the weekend saying no to everything, we spend it saying yes to the right things. 

If you’re planning to run a marathon on Monday, it doesn’t make sense to spend your weekend running sprints. If you’re planning to thrive at work from Monday to Friday, it doesn’t make sense to spend your weekend working without resting.

Great leadership and communication on stage is underpinned by what takes place backstageYou cannot separate who you are from what you say and do, so it is worth taking the time to invest in who you want to be.

As you head into the weekend, what would look different if you approached it as preparation rather than recovery? A time of resting for rather than just resting from?