Congrats! It’s the weekend! You made it through another week. Those magical two days make the most stress filled week worth it. Everyone lives for Saturday and Sunday. Or do they? What if you work in the service industry? Then you look at Friday night like office workers look on Monday morning. It sends a shiver down your spine, doesn’t it?

Fact is, according to experts, weekend happiness is only an illusion. The fact that you have time off from work isn’t, but the idea that you get to recharge and relax is. Most people actually do more on the weekend than they do during their workweek. Crazy, right? Sure, they might not have the dreaded buzz of the alarm clock to worry about, but they will probably wake at the same time they do for work and have a CVS receipt sized to-do list. While “getting together with friends” or “watching TV” might be on the list, there will also be things like “clean the garage”, “mow the law”, “do the shopping”, “wash the dog”, and “pine for the time when I was a child and all these ‘adult’ things were my parents’ problem”. That last one really hits home.

Another sad fact is that for most people who have time off, including those taking vacation time, this time off can actually be more stressful than work. “How so and why do you lie?” you might be asking.

Please don’t kill the messenger, but I speak the truth. It seems that many, and I’ve done this as well, can really only enjoy the first few fleeting moments of the time off. So, before you even get out, “It’s Friday, let’s party”, your brain is already doing calculations about how much “free” time you have before returning to work. How many vacations of yours have been partially ruined by the depressing thought that you have fewer free days in front of you than you have behind you. “Oh no, I only have six more days before I have to go back to work…bummer.”

The only piece of advice experts have is to “live in the moment”. Because that’s all, you can do. Or get super rich so that you don’t have to work, and every day is Friday at 5 PM. Chances are you’d find a way to worry about that too. See? We just did it again, and this time…we did it together.

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