How To Reclaim Your Evenings

Lately, I’ve noticed that I’ve slipped into a routine of going to work, coming home, eating dinner, watching TV and going to bed. Now that might sound like a lovely cosy evening but when it happens every night it can be maddening. Routine can be great, it allows some people to thrive and it generally can’t be “go” all the time. However, I don’t just want to be in that trap where I do nothing during the week and just live for the weekend/days off. I think moving out has contributed to this a little bit as before, when we were living at my parents house, my bedroom was our everything (it was where we slept, ate, watched tv etc) and because of this, we used to go for walks, go to Elliot’s mums house, go to the cinema, go to our friends houses more. Now we have a whole flat, we don’t feel like we have to be out as much as we have a bigger space to hang out in, and while thats great and I love our flat, I feel like we’ve become stuck in this routine and aren’t making the most of every day.

I don’t just want to be the kind of person that stays in during the week and tries to fit everything into their days off. I want to make the most of my time. I’ve titled this post “How to make the most of your evenings”, as most people work every day during the day however this is something that I’m trying to do all the time, all hours of the day. I’m very fortunate to only work part-time at the moment and once Elliot would leave for work, I’d often go back to sleep, wake up later, do some cleaning, maybe watch some youtube, have some food and then go to work. Not very exciting, not making the most of my time and not making any time for tasks/hobbys that I love doing.

I’ve really tried to make an effort lately to fit more into my days, so I’ve stopped going back to sleep, which has made me more productive in the mornings and means our sleeping patterns match. I’ve also told myself that I don’t need to fully clean the house every day, instead I’ll focus on one area each day, breaking up the cleaning. So for instance I’ll clean the bathroom one day, focus on dusting everything another day and the washing and so on. Even these two small changes have really allowed me more time to enjoy my mornings and focus on doing something creative, such as blogging. 

I think reclaiming your evenings can be done slowly, over a period of time as often, everyone IS tired after work. I’m not saying you have to be out straight after work doing something every evenings five days a week as that would be exhausting. But just not being afraid of going out of an evening because it’s a Tuesday. 

Last Monday we had a very spontaneous BBQ, something I would never have done before as it was a Monday and I would be so scared of being tired. It’s just NOT something you do on a Monday. However, the weather was gorgeous and it was so lovely hanging out with family trying to cook on a BBQ, not get sand everywhere and I think we were in bed by ten thirty! it was such a lovely start to the week and really taught me that we shouldn’t be scared about these things. The worse that could happen is your slightly more tired the next day, thats it! I think a lot of it is all about balance, you don’t have to be out all the time but one evening out isn’t going to throw out your whole week. 

I’ve put together a little list of some things that I think are easy and enjoyable ways to mix up your weeknights:

Going to the cinema:

If your a student you get this cheaper, or through certain comparison sites they give discounts. You can go as a group or just with your other half. You can pick which time you go so you don’t have to be out the late and it gives you something to discuss at work the next day. There’s also so many good films out at the moment. We went to see The First Purge recently and it was SO good. It made me jump multiple times and gave a really good back story to why the purges happen and how it all started, you don’t have to have seen any of the other films either!

Popping in on friends and family:

There’s nothing better than having a natter with people you love and you won’t ever regret spending time with them. You can arrange to even just pop round for half an hour for a hot drink or something that we used to do was watch a TV programme, if both of you are watching it from separate houses you might as well make a thing out of it. Snacks and good company sounds good to me.

Running errands:

This might sound like an odd one but I’m actually someone that doesn’t mind running errands. Some people can find it boring and tiring but most places are open fairly late on a weeknight and wouldn’t you rather get those errands out the way instead of losing your weekends/days off to little odd jobs? You can play some good music or a podcast and I bet the time will go quick and it’ll make you feel oh so productive. 

Some other activities include: Having a big tidy up/sort out: you could focus on one area that you think needs a Spring clean, it’ll get you off the sofa and you’ll feel so organised after. Good music would make this task a breeze. 

Going for a walk: I was reluctant to include this, however this is something that my boyfriend and I will do as it’s summer, the evenings are lighter for longer and so nice. Often it’ll get so hot in our flat (we’re sandwiched between two flats so we get everyones heat, amazing in winter not so fun in summer) it’ll just be nice to get out. You don’t have to be out long but moving your body will feel so good and actually help you feel less tired the next day as you’ll sleep better.

Go to Ikea: Who doesn’t love ikea?! Evenings are one of the best times to go too as there’s hardly any people there and it makes shopping so easy, I love even just window shopping at Ikea. And if you’re like us, it takes about 45 minutes to get there but the drive is lovely. 

Get dinner out: Again, I wasn’t sure about including this one as it seems such an obvious thing to do, but you don’t have to go to a restaurant, you could make dinner at home and take it out with you as a sort of picnic, or even have a little BBQ somewhere. You’re still doing what you’d be doing at home but a change of scenery could really enegerise you. This is something you can only really do in summer as well so you might as well make the most of the season.

There’s so many little things you can do to break up your evening routine and make your weeknights more exciting and yours again. Let me know what you think of this post and if there’s anything you do during the week to reclaim your evenings, let me know!