You made it, it’s Friday! And you deserve to give yourself a little TLC. Saving money doesn’t have to be a hardship, it doesn’t have to mean that you live hard and constantly feel like you're doing without. Sure, there might be things you have to choose between (that pizza take out tonight, or the new car you wanted next year), but losing all the fun out of life isn’t one of them.
In honour of this philosophy, here are a few things you can do to make sure you have yourself a really fun Friday!
1. Decorate your desk.
Bear with us. A number of studies, reported here in the Guardian, state that, “offices with scenic views, as well as high-quality indoor environments, could help employees become more productive”. It’s science!
It’s not expensive, just get yourself a plant, name her Nora, and remember to water her once a week. Instant recipe for success! Not quite, obviously, but you get the gist. You spend a minimum of 40 hours a week in your work environment, make sure you make it as pleasant a space as possible in order to boost your productivity.
2. 'Riddle of the day' office board.
There is a scientific reason behind Google's games room and Facebook's board game collection. A happy employee is actually 12% more productive than one who is less happy. This makes this activity a win-win for both you and your colleagues, and your boss.
Trial a weekly office riddle or brainteaser by displaying it in a communal space. Every Friday you can come together to see what the solution was and see who of you managed to figure it out correctly.
Not only is it a fun way to round up the week, but its an opportunity to work collaboratively in a low-stakes environment and it can actually lead to a strengthening your working relationships, which in turn will lead to better productivity.
3. Make sure you write a little treat into your budget.
Willpower is a resource. When that resource is depleted, you will have a much harder time denying yourself things that you want. Saving is important, but in order to ensure you maintain a good level of savings and keep to your budget you need to make sure you 'treat' yourself from time to time.
By setting up a saving step you can make sure that each time you spend in a certain category you set aside a certain amount of money. This means that even when you're treating yourself you're making savings.
4. Eat well
A good breakfast helps set you up for the day, and actually finding time to sit down in the morning and start your day out in a calm and orderly fashion really helps set the tone of the rest of the day.
Furthermore, recent research by Tork USA found a strong correlation between taking a substantial lunch break and employee productiveness. Namely, that those who took a lunch break were more satisfied in their work and more productive.
Studies show that laughter in the workplace relieves stress and alleviates boredom. It also means that you engage with each other on more than just a professional level. Being able to relax enough with your colleagues to have a laugh together will improve both your professional and mental health.
Interestingly, cracking jokes can also make a person appear more competent at their job.
There is always a fine line, however, between laughter that alleviates stress and laughter that offends or disrupts. Always make sure you stay firmly within professional bounds whilst in the workplace.