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4 reasons to skip the chores this weekend

(MoneyWatch) I was on Twitter, asking for weekend time management tips, when someone suggested a rather startling one: Don't do chores. The idea is that weekends are for relaxation and rejuvenation. There are no prizes for reaching Monday with the fridge stocked, the laundry done, and the house clean.

At first, I was mixed on the idea. In my household, for instance, with two working parents and three kids, weekends seem like a good time for getting caught up. But the more I think about it, the more benefits I see in a weekend chore strike:

1. Chores expand to fill the available space. On weekends you have lots of time for cleaning the house. So you spend more time cleaning the house than you would if you tried to squeeze it into weekday pockets of time. Unless you're living in squalor, excess cleaning isn't getting you any farther in life than a slavish devotion to emptying your inbox.

2. Too much shopping is expensive and wasteful. If you have lots of time to wander through stores, you'll buy more things. You may not really need a weekly grocery trip. By putting it off, I force myself to make meals using what's already in the pantry.

3. If you're already frenzied on weekdays, a little more won't hurt. Staying in must-do mode 15 minutes longer requires less mental work than shifting out of relaxation mode into work mode. Which brings us to the final point:

4. Weekends really are for rejuvenation. Playing with your kids is more important than cleaning the house. Volunteering at a homeless shelter is more important than laundry. If you're going to devote long stretches of time to something, make sure it's something that matters. The house will just get dirty again, but summer is soon ending and you may not get another perfect beach weekend.

Do you use weekends for chores?

Photo courtesy of Flickr user Kent Wang
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