As a programmer, I have adopted an extension of the “0 Inbox” idea. I call it “no fail Friday”. Basically, all week long I add tests – one at a time – to the current programming project and work on them till they pass. If all my test are working and have been rolled into the master branch on Friday morning, I make no changes to the master branch on Friday. If the last test added still is not working, I focus Friday on getting it to pass. Once that is done, I start nothing new in the development plan. Now, I might start a branch and work on some code optimization, or play with an idea, dig into a library or a myriad of other things that still have value. But, nothing that will plague my mind that the first thing I will walk into Monday is a problem. Nothing that my mind will want to churn on all weekend. Since adopting this strategy, I find that I go into the weekend with a clear mind and don’t think about work at all. No desire to go fix that last test, niggle out why that expression is failing.
For me, having problems carry over from one week into the next is demoralizing. When the problem persist over the weekend, it makes me feel like I am already behind on Monday. By not letting an issue or discrete task carry over from one week to the next, it means I get to start fresh on something new first thing Monday morning, and that is something to look forward to.
What things do you do to clear your plate by Friday afternoon? Or what things cause you to be consistently thinking “thinking about work” during your weekend? How could you change your Friday routine to clear your mind and enjoy your weekend?