I am not sure since when, but of late I have started finding weekends more stressful than weekdays.
Weekdays have this routine, which makes it easy for one to run it on autopilot even if it is extremely mundane. Apart from the responsibilities of your day job or whatever you do to earn money, there isn’t much pressure to prove that you are having a good time. But the moment weekend sets in, there is this unsaid uneasiness in the air which demands of you to go out, live it all up, pursue a passion, indulge in a hobby, treat yourself with a beach getaway, or if nothing else at least check in to your neighborhood hotel and get breakfast in bed.
And by making weekends all about proving that you are living it all up in those two days, there’s a huge economy that ballooned up quietly around it.
From selling 1 day pottery classes to “sustainable — eco” treks (where you pay the organizer to take you on a trek to clean up the trail of empty bottles, wrappers, waste material etc), there’s no end to what you might stumble upon as a new manufactured passion, that you can buy off the shelf.
The weekend economy thrives on “ready to grab packaged passion” in a use and throw format. Come Thursday, and my social feeds are buzzing with things I should do this weekend, and how effectively this “passion economy” can manipulate me into believing that this weekend my heart’s calling is mountain climbing. Last week maybe it was movement therapy. And the coming week it might be wildlife photography.
I buy, subscribe, attend as much of these packaged passion products I can so that my weekend looks fruitful. So that I have Monday morning stories at work about my new found passion. Sometimes it becomes impossible for me to manage my day because I have stuffed myself up with too many things to do on the weekend, to the extent that I either miss my lunch at home or miss calling that friend whom I was supposed to call 2 months back.
My standard response is “Oh I am so busy these days. So much to do, so little time”
This is unfortunately because of the imbalanced wheel of our weekday — weekend cycle. We work like there’s no tomorrow from Monday to Friday and expect the humble two days weekend to fill us up with everything that we missed inside our glass prisons. We work even harder so that we can buy more and more of those manufactured passions to make our weekends fruitful. And hence the emergence of the weekend economy selling us smart passions, one-day goals, 2-day certifications, 3 hours of Instagram-worthy baking classes, half day photography course……..Keep filling it in till you have no time to even remember if it’s a Sunday or a Monday.
Well, there’s nothing wrong in a productive weekend by doing things that you enjoy or matters to you the most. What becomes a compulsive disorder is the urge to make the weekend look productively worthwhile. What’s wrong in spending the day lazing around, chatting with an old friend or simply hiking up that old trail (you can still clean all the trash on the way without having to buy that eco — trek, remember?)
Thanks to this covert weekend economy, our weekends might soon end up looking like weekdays, full of to-do lists, actionables, and targets.
Let’s just slow down and do nothing for a while. Can we?