If you’re like us, you have more to-do’s than time. So, here is one to-do list you probably rarely think of but is vital to our sustained personal effectiveness. It’s simple: Play, Rest and Think.


It’s easy to disregard playing as trivial, especially when there are so many “serious” things we need to do: problems to solve, deadlines to meet, and tasks to finish.

But play actually helps us with all these things. It’s rejuvenating and stimulates our creativity. Researcher Stuart Brown says, “Nothing lights up the brain like play.” 


It takes emotional strength and personal courage to fight against a current culture that values productivity at the cost of basic human needs like sleep. People have been sleeping since the beginning of time (as far as we know), but we somehow try to negate this basic need.

We wouldn’t try this with food or water, but sleep is just as essential. So close the laptop and take a nap. Or go to bed early. Or get up late. Don’t set the alarm. Just rest.


Our youngest daughter used to have a special area in her room where she could chill and relax. She called it her “chillax zone.” Although your chillax zone might not have big pink pillows and a fluffy white carpet, we all need to make a time and place that offers us mental space.

Your space might be a reading or meditation corner in your house, your bathtub, your gym, or a nearby park where you walk – anywhere you can be alone with your thoughts.

The thinking, planning, and reflection you do in this space helps you get off the treadmill of demands at ground-zero and step into the eagle’s nest to gain a better perspective on yourself, your situation, and your dreams.

So, there’s your to-do list for the best weekend ever: Play, Rest and Think.