By Jana Abelovska
Mondays can be difficult for sure, and if put to the vote, Mondays would most certainly come out to be the least favourable day of the week.
Whilst our weekends are usually filled with activities and tasks that we choose to do, whether it is getting a few extra hours of sleep, catching up on the latest Netflix show ordering in your favourite take away and taking a long walk in the park, bearing in mind these are some of the only activities we can pursuit during these times. When Monday arrives, we feel this sudden low having to get back into the 'new' fixed routine of homeschooling or working from home.
A Blue Monday
There is one Monday that is even more abhorred than any other, and the so-called 'Blue Monday' falls on the third Monday of every January. The theory goes that the majority of people are cold and financially strained during this time of the year. They are also angsty over their failure to follow through their new year resolutions, like adopting a new exercise regimen, drinking less, spending more time with family, etc.
If you find yourself tense and overwhelmed, the following actionable ways can assist you to stay a few steps ahead.
Cut Yourself Off from Work Over the Weekend
It would help if you created stricter boundaries between your work life and home life. With working from home being the new norm, for many people, it has been difficult to set boundaries. Repeatedly checking for emails, notifications, calls, messages, and work calendars for coming tasks will make it feel like you are continuously working and have no break. So by the time Monday comes, you don't feel energised. Learn to disconnect from work devices, free your mind and learn to enjoy your weekend, so you are fresh and ready to start your week on a positive.
The balance between sleep and exercise
Sleep is one of the most critical factors in feeling the Monday Blues. With many of us sleeping in late Saturday and Sundays, the Monday early start can have us feeling cranky. Whilst catching up on sleep over the weekend is always great, why not incorporate a Monday morning working routine to get the heart pumping and energy levels high.
Exercise first thing in the morning increases our alertness, focus and believe it or not; it also improves our mood.
So squat and smile!
Start the Monday With a Treat for Yourself
Coffee, Tea or Hot chocolate the choice is yours and something many of us enjoyed queuing up for at our local coffee shop first thing Monday morning. During these times why not order yourself a new mug to drink from or find out if your local coffee shop is offering takeaway and if it is difficult to get out on a Monday morning you can always login to a food delivery app and have your favourite morning beverage delivered to your door.
Identify the Problem Behind the Blues
Ever asked yourself why you are feeling the Monday Blues? Usually, we brush our emotions under the carpet and allow ourselves to continue feeling the way we do, blaming it on 'Its cos its Monday' Heard this phrase before?
Why not trying to put pen to paper and writing down the emotions you feel and try to identify the route cause. This way, you can keep track of your feelings and try to come up with a resolution.
According to a 2019 Employee Happiness survey by mind space, it was found that British workers are amongst the unhappiest in the World. If for any reason work is bringing you down, build the courage to speak to your line manager or HR as many companies are understanding the importance of mental well being and are supporting employees in resolving concerns.
Think, Write, Speak!
Make Preparation for the Monday on Friday
It's simple, learn to schedule before signing off on a Friday plan for the following week (especially your Monday). Learn to prioritise and plan a structure to your day and your week to help yourself keep on top of your tasks.
Planning can be an excellent way of managing stress, saving you time and help achieve your goals.
Give it a go!
Focus on Positivity
Make a list of things that you feel excited about. Many people look ahead to the Mondays with dread because they continuously focus on the difficult tasks they have to accomplish. The mental stress from being a constant worry-wart can leave you exhausted and cranky.
Turn it around and concentrate on the positives. Make a list of things that you are looking forward to work.
Positivity breeds optimism.
Work Hard, Have Fun, Make A Difference!
Work! Work! Work! If this is what your current life looks like, you need to bring a change.
With going out no longer being an option and depression on the increase, Monday Blues are even bluer than usual. Having fun is a simple way of making a difference in your mood. There are many ways of having fun or being social; Arrange a catchup on Zoom with friends and why not create a virtual quiz, or turn your lounge into a cinema and binge on your favourite junk.
We all have our own interpretation of fun so whatever it is you enjoy, plan your fun activities and put them in your diary giving you something to look forward to.
With over 4 million people in the UK having had the first covid jab, we are hoping it is not long before we can go back to some level of normality and turn these Monday Blues into a joyous occasion to return back to the office, queue up for our coffees and most importantly be able to meet our family and friends.