If you dread the start of your workweek, then you’re not alone. The stress, anxiety and the butterflies in your stomach that you get is a reality for over 75% of workers today. As we mentally end our weekend and prepare for Monday morning, the blues are so pervasive that it can also creep into how we feel on Sunday afternoon. The fact that Monday blues are common, even if you like your job, is not at all surprising —and here’s why.
We begin each Friday happy to prepare for our weekend. We don’t have to set the alarm, and we have control over how we spend our time and the enjoyment we receive. By the time Sunday evening comes, we’re back to thinking about the weekly grind, our lists, our workload for the following week, what we left unfinished from last week, our morning commute, and everything else we need to do to keep the “trains running in our life.” While dreading Monday morning is common, we don’t have to resign ourselves to living with it. Instead, here are a few ways to beat the Monday blues.
Take control of your time
There are three ways we should all take control of our time.
1. Start Monday with a clean slate
Monday mornings can be stressful enough when you think about what you must get done that week. You should not add to your stress by letting projects from the previous week carry over to the new week. Ideally, by the end of Friday, you should push yourself to finish the tasks that you did not get done throughout that week. Letting these items sit on your to-do list not only creates more stress and tension, but it makes it harder to focus on the week ahead until these old items get handled.
2. Plan for Success
To hit your stride early on Monday morning, Mark Murphy says that you need to develop a success plan to make sure you are starting each day as effectively as possible. He explains that instead of jumping into each morning by checking email and voicemail immediately, you should first have a plan in place, so you know what it takes to make sure the day is successful. What is critical about having your success plan is that you are taking control of how your Monday gets spent instead of being at the mercy of what everyone else has deemed important. You should develop this success plan each Friday or Sunday, so you can start Monday morning ready to dive into the day.
3. Start with you
Part of what makes Monday morning so stressful is that after taking the time we need to rejuvenate and recenter ourselves across the weekend, we often feel squeezed out of the planning for success that we need to do to prepare for Monday morning and the rest of the week. Instead of leaving you behind, get yourself physically and mentally ready for the week by taking control of your time in the morning. Try waking up a little early and choose how to best prepare yourself, like exercise, yoga, meditation, listening to your favorite tapes, or taking the time to enjoy breakfast.
You might be asking yourself what you should do next if you’ve effectively taken control of your time but you still have Sunday stress and Monday blues. If this is the case, it’s time to dig deeper to find the root cause because the problem may not be how to use your time; the problem might be that you are not engaged in what you’re doing.
Take control of your career
Instead of dismissing the discomfort you feel every Sunday and Monday as an annoyance that you need to ignore, it might instead be an important signal that there is a disconnect between where your career journey is taking you and where you want to go.
4. Reconnect with your goals
When we’re not happy in our current job, we become very good at knowing what we don’t want. We know, for example, what kind of tasks and projects don’t play to our strengths, what kind of bosses we don’t like, and what type of team members we want to avoid. We are not as good at knowing where we want our career to go, and what are the many ways we can get there. This is when you need to step back and clarify your goals. You might see that once you connect to your desired career path, then you might be able to create a better job fit right where you are by asking for new assignments that help you grow your skills in a way that also engages you.
5. Change your job
Once you have clarified your path, you might find that your current position is a stepping stone to where you want to go, but the restlessness and discomfort you feel each week is telling you it’s time to move on. If this is the case, it’s important to stay proactive. One mistake many of us make is that even when we know it’s time to move on, we talk ourselves out of it. We try to convince ourselves that maybe it’s not as bad as we think until the pain becomes unbearable and we’re now making decisions out of desperation. Use your Sunday evenings to map out your next steps, that way you can start each Monday knowing that you have a clear plan for not only the week ahead but also for your future.
Having trouble returning to work due to the Monday Blahs?
Feel like you never really left work? Enjoy your job, but hate getting out of bed on Monday morning? You may be struggling with the Monday blahs.
At the extreme, the Monday Blahs may contains elements of depression, tiredness, hopelessness, and a sense that our job is unpleasant and unavoidable.
However, for many of us, the feelings of lethargy, sluggishness, and lack of passion that we may be feeling on Monday morning may not necessarily be a reflection of our like or dislike for our job. Our Monday morning struggles may be due to difficulty dealing with the transition from one dimension of our life to another. A lack of balance, fun, and fulfillment can leave you feeling dreary when your alarm goes off at the start of a new week.
Beverly’s Hot Tips For Building Resiliency and Dealing With the Monday Blahs:
- Leave work at work whenever you can
- Plan your Monday tasks on Friday so that you can combat that swamped feeling.
- Plan something enjoyable for Monday.
- Re-organize yourself the night before you return to work
- Set leisure goals for the weekend. Organize your weekend activities in order to get your chores done in a lesser amount of time. This allows you to plan for ‘fun’
- Eat, sleep and exercise to build up your energy stores for the upcoming week
- Smile – it is contagious
Your Monday morning struggle may be due to dealing with the transition from one dimension of your life to another. Beverly Beuermann-King Click to tweet
Examine The Reason For Your Monday Blahs:
By finding ways to take care of ourselves and balance our time away from work, we can turn the Monday blahs into feelings of being refreshed and energized.
One final note, if the Monday Blahs are related to negative feelings about your work or your colleagues, it is important to address these situations and find productive ways to solve them. It is important to clarify what is bothering you, so that you can be active in finding solutions.
If you have some strategies to share – comment on this posting!
Written By Beverly Beuermann-King
Building Resiliency Through Stress and Mental Health Strategies.
For over 20 years, Beverly has used her S-O-S Principle™ with teams who want to control their reactions to stress, build resiliency against life’s challenges and live full and flourishing lives. Beverly works with teams and leaders to shift from stressed out to resilient, enabling them to be more engaged, productive and healthy.
Stop letting Monday ruin your Sunday. With these expert-backed strategies, you’ll end your weekend feeling happy and stress-free.
Sunday night: it’s the wet blanket of the weekend—and if you’ve ever felt your TGIFs morph into OMGs as Sunday comes to a close, you’re not alone. According to a 2015 poll by Monster.com, 76% of Americans report “really bad” Sunday night blues.
One reason Sundays seem to end on such a low note: we might be unconsciously stuck in the emotions of childhood. “Many children experience a sort of separation anxiety when it comes to leaving their parents and home and getting back to school on Monday,” explains Gail Saltz MD, associate professor of psychiatry at the New York Presbyterian Weill Cornell School of Medicine and Health‘s contributing psychology editor. “That Sunday-night anxiety can become the mind’s habit, even if you’re years or decades out of school.”
The typical Monday-to-Friday workweek structure also plays a role. “Getting back to a regular schedule can trigger your mind to start creating all sorts of predictions and reflections,” explains Simon Rego, PsyD, director of psychology training at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City. “And that tends to go two ways: you start to feel some form of anxious or sad.”
Closing out the weekend with a slump doesn’t have to be the norm. The thoughts we have on Sunday night can be tamed, so we’re less anxious, less sad, and actually still savoring the last few hours of the weekend. Here’s how to overcome the sucky Sundays and stay in chill mode—at least until Monday morning.
THOUGHT: I’m totally screwed for work on Monday.
WHAT IT IS: Anxiety
Even if you love your job, Mondays are tough—especially when you have an overflowing inbox or a pile of unfinished assignments staring you down. To keep you from worrying on Sunday about what the workweek will bring, it’s important to try to take a step back and put your stress into perspective. “A lot of times with anxiety, we’re not always dealing with realistic thoughts,” explains Rego. “We can create worst-case scenarios in our head that we then believe are true, even though they are not.”
The solution is to stop the cycle of what-if. “Don’t give these anxious thoughts a free ride,” Rego continues. “Every time you catch yourself thinking them, stop yourself and think, ‘Is this something that would really happen or has ever really happened in the past?’ Remind yourself that it’s going to be ok and you’ve actually managed quite well in the past.”
If you have time, Rego encourages clients to take “productive action” where they can. Read your work email for 10 minutes (but only 10 minutes—set a timer!) or practice that presentation. “It can be helpful to do a little work and it can alleviate some of those worries about feeling underprepared if you can knock some tasks off,” says Rego.
THOUGHT: I never cleaned out my closet this weekend—again.
WHAT IT IS: Guilt
It’s easy to lose sight of all you accomplished on Saturday and Sunday when you remember the things you didn’t do: you forgot to call Grandma, your bathtub’s still dirty, you never dropped off the dry cleaning. Guilt sets in, putting a dark mark on your otherwise productive weekend.
“Guilt is an emotion that we experience when we think we have violated our own moral code or ethical rules for living,” explains Rego. “People who feel guilty often tend to have very high standards for themselves, sometimes ones that aren’t realistic.”
To shake it, first make amends with the fact that yes, you may have ditched your plans, but that’s not a reflection of who you are as person. “People sometimes forget that things like our relationships or our approach to exercise aren’t based off one big event that we do—they’re a sum of small, everyday behaviors,” says Rego.
Rego adds that it’s helpful to approach the situation with compassion. “Think about what you would say to a friend if they told you they skipped the gym or didn’t take the kids to the zoo—you probably wouldn’t be so critical and would tell them that it’s no big deal. You deserve to speak to yourself the same way.”
THOUGHT: Everyone’s weekend was better than mine.
WHAT IT IS: Comparison
You were perfectly happy with your low-key weekend at home—until you spotted your friend’s amazing concert photos on Instagram. “Comparison is an instinctive way to gauge how we’re doing, but there’s rarely any benefit to it,” says Rego. “Often you just end up making yourself feel worse,” says Rego.
To dismantle the cycle of compare-and-despair, skip the Sunday evening social media trolling—nothing good comes out of it. Then, if you’re going to compare yourself to others, do it objectively. “We generally only compare up, meaning we hardly even consider what the people who have less accessibility than us or are less fortunate than us are doing,” says Rego. “Do you ever think about how the homeless spend their weekend?” (Probably not.) As cliché as it sounds, he suggests counting your blessings—you’ll quickly come to realize that you have much more in your life than your social media account lets on. If you’re truly disappointed with how your weekend went, make plans for the next one.
THOUGHT: I’m so bummed that the weekend is over.
WHAT IT IS: Sadness
It’s true: Monday morning spreadsheets are not nearly as fun as Sunday brunch, a backyard barbecue, or even binge-watching Stranger Things on Netflix. Still, spending Sunday evening moping about that won’t do you any good. This sadness often washes over people when they’re hanging out at home and not doing much, says Dr. Saltz. “If you tend to be more of the sad type on Sundays, it’s actually good to add some activities to the end of your day that can give you a sense of accomplishment,” she says. Invite friends or family over for dinner, head to the gym, or pick up a book you’ve been meaning to read. By staying occupied, you’ll end the weekend feeling happier and more relaxed.
Thanksgiving was Americans’ favorite day of 2013, according to a recent Gallup poll. Throughout the year, the Gallup polling company conducts more than 175,000 surveys to determine what days most Americans are happiest, and which they find most stressful. At the most basic level, the findings can be summarized as: Americans love getting time off from work.
Memorial Day took second prize in terms of favorite days, and was closely followed by Christmas and two random Saturdays — June 8 and September 28. Easter Sunday, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and the Saturday before Martin Luther King Day were also all in the top ten, rounded out with Sunday, June 9. (June 8-9 was just a good weekend, it seems.)
Some of the worst days, defined as when people felt most stressed and least happy, correlated with major news events. On June 3, the nation’s worst day, the WikiLeaks trial began, while on the third-worst day, February 28, the United States was approaching budget sequestration. Obama’s remarks on the war in Syria and the Washington Navy Yard shootings occurred on September 10 and September 16, respectively, the eighth and ninth worst days. Most notably, four of the worst days occurred on Mondays, and none occurred on a Friday or a weekend.
The Monday blues are nothing new — people are often stressed, tired and rushed heading into a busy work week. But there are steps you can take to “make your weekdays more like your weekends,” said happiness expert Gretchen Rubin, a happiness expert and author of The Happiness Project.
1. Get more sleep.
One major contributor to weekday stress is lack of sleep, Rubin said. According to another Gallup poll, 40 percent of Americans get far less than the recommended seven hours a night. People tend to sleep in on weekends, but don’t get to bed early enough to get enough zzz’s on weekdays, Rubin said. Fixing that will feel better.
2. Watch less television.
Watching television yields diminishing returns, Rubin said. If you have a favorite show that you look forward tuning into once a week, then by all means do it. But if you’re just spacing out on the couch flipping through channels, no wonder your weekday is falling flat. Rubin noted that people often say they watch TV because they’re too tired to do anything else — but then they’re on the couch until midnight, instead of asleep. “If you’re too tired to do anything but watch TV, then you should just go to sleep,” Rubin said.
3. Make more midweek plans.
Another common denominator of American’s favorite days of the year? Beyond being holidays, they were days that are spent connecting with people. Often, we get too bogged down with our responsibilities to make time to do this during the week, figuring we’ll save it for the weekend, Rubin said. Instead, spread out the love. Plan to meet a friend for lunch or dinner mid-week, or ask one to be your exercise buddy on morning walks during the week.
4. Stop hurrying.
Being in a rush will always feel stressful, and it could make your whole day feel worse. Rubin suggests giving yourself enough time to do what you need to do. Waking up just 20 minutes earlier to enjoy a cup of coffee and not have to run out the door could give your day the calm, focused start you need to get things going on the right track.
5. Give yourself a start-of-the-week treat.
If you know you hate Mondays, try to find something that you do like to do that day. (Or if Wednesday is the day that always drags you down, schedule it for then.) If there’s a tough meeting you have to have, don’t schedule it for a down day. If you know you always get stuck in traffic on a certain morning, leave a little earlier and stop to get breakfast on your way in instead.
6. Turn off the news.
What’s going on in national news does tend to have an effect on the national mood. If you’re the type of person who gets really absorbed by watching bad news unfold, tell yourself to turn it off, particularly when something dramatic like a shooting happens that might yield a lot of coverage. “I call it ‘potato chip news’ — it doesn’t have a lot of substance to it, but it gets people very worked up,” Rubin said. Read what you need to read to be informed in 20 minutes, and then turn it off, Rubin said. She’s right: A recent study showed that people who watched significant amounts of news about the Boston Marathon bombing felt even worse than people who had been there.
7. Take the time to evaluate.
What’s the real key to any of these changes? Rubin says you have to take the time to figure out what is making you happy, what isn’t, and how to act on it. “People tend to let things wash them,” Rubin said. Taking the time to make these minor adjustments will go far to help lower stress and increase happiness.
How To Beat The Monday Blues originally appeared on Everyday Health
What is your mantra to remain motivated on a well bloomed Monday morning? Is there any secret to overcome Monday Blues or you just let the day pass?
They say “Motivation doesn’t last quite longer, neither does bathing, and that is why we recommend it everyday.” That’s the thing about motivation, you need to have a powerful dose every single day to keep your body and mind aligned together to perform different tasks. For a majority of people Monday seems a tough day. You might also have a case of the Monday Blues if the beginning of a workweek seems stressful and anxiety keeps crawling inside your head all day long.
Having quite a long weekend it’s obvious that your body would ask for one more day off and your mind would support the same. But that’s not what we are here to talk about. Instead we will be finding together the ways that could keep the working professionals motivated enough on a Monday morning.
Let’s Dig Deep Together to Avoid Deadly Monday Blues
Identify the Problem
The first thing to do is to ask yourself what is wrong? In case you are feeling Monday Blues frequently, you must consider the issue. If you are having this kind of feeling regularly, it is because you are not happy with your work or you are worried about something regarding the job only. Try to figure out the issues to resolve your problem. It is empowering to take charge of your problem and try to improve your situation.
Try to Keep Work Load Off on Mondays
It is possible that you are feeling Monday Blues because there is heavy workload on Mondays. For some people even the slightest feeling of this burden may cause Monday Blues. So, to avoid the stress on Monday, plan much of your work on Fridays only. Your work might have piled up from previous days or even weeks and therefore it is the best idea to conclude as much work as possible on Fridays. This will keep the burden off your shoulders.
Add Excitement to Your Daily Work Schedule
Make a list of the tasks that bring excitement to you. It could be doing any particular task or checking the important documents to conclude any official task. Whatever it is just try to make a list of all the stuff you love doing. This will bring an element of excitement to your job and would let you enjoy your Mondays more. This practice would put you in a positive mood helping you keep the stress away from Monday routine.
Get Enough Sleep and Plan Out Your Day in Advance
Going a bit early to bed on Sunday evening would help you to get a good night sleep and wake up fresh in the morning. When you have some good hours of sleep, you are more likely to feel fresh and rejuvenated all day long. Moreover, sleeping early on Sunday evenings would help to get up early on Monday mornings and this will help to reach office a few hours before the general routine. This will boost your positivity and will keep anxiety at distance.
Remain Positive All Day Long
Feeling positivity is nothing but a state of mind. You could easily feel positive the entire day by getting motivation from an idol, by reading something, or just by doing your favorite task be it playing for some time or just listening to the music. Make attitude of gratitude a part of your personality and kick start your Monday by feeling thankful for it. Make room to place some motivational quote frames at your desk and keep it organized and clean enough.
The essence of the story is you must not struggle to get over the Monday but plan the day well enough to pass it thoughtfully. By making your Monday one of the special days of the week you will feel more delighted all week long. This will help to concentrate on your job with a sense of responsibility and positivity. This is all that you require to make an awesome Monday.
ERA Real Estate professionals were in for a real treat when inspirational speaker and author Zan Monroe took the stage during the ERA 2013 International Business Conference to deliver his new talk track, Marketing Mondays, for the first time. During the hour, the inaugural audience learned a very valuable lesson: work on your business in the morning and work in your business during the afternoon.
And the best day to do this? Monday. Zan explained that marketing done on a Monday is more effective because people are more susceptible to changing their behavior on a Monday. Case in point – think about the last time you started a diet. I bet it was on a Monday.
Polling more than 20 top agents, including some from ERA Real Estate, Zan offered the simple things today’s best agents are doing to make a huge difference in their business. Starting your day at 7 a.m. and ending it around 5 p.m., here’s what a Marketing Monday could look like for you.
Working on Your Business
7-8 a.m.: There are three keys to success: mindset, skill set, and actions. Of these, mindset is most important. You must be in the right frame of mind to build your skill set and act effectively. Therefore, many top agents begin the day with a head-clearing workout, they plan their meals (6 small balanced meals a day), and give thanks for every day. In fact, one agent writes the same affirmation 25 times a morning, beginning at 7 a.m. And that is: he believes he has the right to be successful.
8-9 a.m.: Some people have a plan but they do not believe in it. Some people believe but they do not have a plan. Successful people have a plan, believe in it and follow it. One agent polled by Van suggests this tip: at 8 a.m., review your written business plan, review your monthly goals, create a plan for this coming week that addresses those goals and then prioritize activities each day based on your plan.
9-10 a.m.: Work on cleaning out your database so that it consists of only current and high potential clients, including friends and family referrals. With Zan’s help, one agent reduced her database of 18,000 names to 2,000 and ultimately 200 contacts. Here’s a tip to manage your database. Break it out into four buckets: A clients, which are your raving fans; B clients, people who could be raving fans if you put more effort into the relationship; C clients, current clients; and D clients, people you do not know or care to work with. Delete the D clients from the database.
This agent then focused on staying in touch with her buyers, sellers, and sphere of influence with birthday cards, phone calls, wine and cheese gatherings and client lunches. She also sends them relevant real estate information to position herself as an expert. Once she did that, her profits went through the roof. This agent’s motto is now: see the people, serve the people, save them from bad realtors.
One more tip on this. It is really important to get to know your clients from the very beginning. For starters on how to do that, check out Zan’s Buyer Interview document and Client Information Sheet.
Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox
If you wake up on Monday morning with a groan and struggle to get on with the workday, you may have a case of the Monday blues. There’s no wondering why we hate Mondays — it always seems to sneak up on us, just as we’re starting to relax and enjoy our weekend. While for most of us, Monday is the least productive day of the week, Carla Wood, business coach and founder of ALL Strategy, says it doesn’t have to be.
Follow these strategies and eliminate the Monday blues for good:
Start your Monday on Sunday night. Wood says the reason Mondays are so hard is because of the shift in attitude and lifestyle that happens over the weekend. “We move into personal mode on the weekend. Having to ramp up again can feel overwhelming as you anticipate the mountain and having to climb it again at the start of the week,” says Wood. While you may want to suck up every last bit of freedom on Sunday night, taking a couple of minutes to mentally prepare for the week ahead can help you overcome the Monday blues.
Start prioritizing. Make a list of tasks to do on Monday and schedule it into your calendar as the first appointment of the day. Rather than starting the workweek with a blank slate, reminding yourself of the priorities for the day can help you avoid getting stuck in the busy-ness that can at times be overwhelming on Monday morning. Scheduling a team meeting to go over the priorities for the week can help everyone get into work mode and fight off the Monday blues.
Start the day with something that gives you energy. Going for a run or hitting the gym first thing Monday morning gets your body moving and creates positive energy to begin your day. Having the Monday blues doesn’t mean you hate your job, nor does it mean you’re depressed. “It’s more about being stuck and not yet in the momentum of the work week,” says Wood. Doing an activity that ramps up your energy can help put you back in the right headspace to be productive.
Reconnect with colleagues. If you run into the office and hit your desk first thing Monday morning, consider doing a social call first. “Just having that water cooler conversation sometimes can be a motivator to get in and get started because you’re looking forward to the social time rather than sitting down at your desk and cracking down,” says Wood.
Get a mentor. If your Monday blues are chronic, it may be a symptom of a larger problem. Wood recommends entrepreneurs, especially those who work alone, find a mentor to speak with about business goals and issues. “It allows you to have another perspective and some accountability,” she says. A bad case of “the Mondays” could just be a symptom of feeling overwhelmed. Finding a mentor to help you work through those underlying issues could help get rid of the blues.
It’s Sunday night and that all-too-familiar feeling has started to set in: the Monday blues. As the sun sets, you slowly start to think about the work week ahead, and you don’t like it. But is there a way to beat the Monday blues without moving to “I don’t give AF anymore” island? The answer is yes. A lot of people don’t like Mondays because it means the beginning of a five-day work week. Instead of laying on the beach and sipping on margaritas, you’re most likely going to be looking at a computer screen while you do some paperwork. Yuck. However, your Mondays don’t have to be ruined just because you have a nine-to-five job. There are multiple ways to beat the Monday blues without having to quit your career.
“Do something that makes you feel good about yourself with the way you start a Monday morning. Buy a coffee for a coworker or two, acknowledge anotherвЂ™s good work or offer to help a coworker with an assignment. Do things that allow others to say, ‘Thank you!’ and appreciate your contributions вЂ” no matter how small they may be. YouвЂ™ll soon realize you look forward to not only starting your week, but allowing someone elseвЂ™s to be just as grand,” says Wirkn’s co-founder and CMO Todd Dean in an interview with Bustle over email.
In addition to doing something nice for someone, it’s also important to have a positive mindset when it comes to Mondays. If not, you may continue to dread Mondays like the plague. Here are 11 ways to beat the Monday Blues ASAP.
1. Plan A Lunch Or Dinner Date With A Loved One
Instead of stressing about all the work you have to do on Monday, schedule some time to hang out with a loved one before the day is over. You may feel happier about your day if you surround yourself with people who make you happy. “Most people wait until the weekend for rewards. It is critical to reward yourself Monday the most as it is the time when you are least motivated and most down,” says licensed clinical psychologist Dr. Kim Chronister in an interview with Bustle over email.
2. Take A Class
Mondays can be hard because you’re no longer doing things you like. Extend the weekend by going to a fun class after work with a friend or SO. “Go to an activity class Monday night (creative writing, boxing, dance, martial arts etc.) Activity is one of the most important ingredients for happiness according to positive psychology research,” says Chronister.
3. Set Positive Intentions Monday Morning
“Use positive affirmations and set positive intentions Monday morning. Tell yourself ‘Today I intend to give and receive.’ ‘Today I will feel energized in everything I do,'” says Chronister. Setting positive intentions can make you see Mondays through rose-colored glasses. The only reason why you think Mondays are bad is because you believe they are.
4. Do Something Nice For A Coworker
One of the best ways to boost your mood is by doing something nice for a coworker. Offer to help a coworker with an assignment or pay for their lunch when you guys go out. “Studies show that giving to others spikes feel-good neurochemicals in the brain,” says Chronister.
5. Use Vacation Time
Hate Mondays? Avoid them entirely by using your vacation time. “Use vacation time (many US workers donвЂ™t) without feeling guilt,” says eating psychotherapist and author Karen R. Koenig in an interview with Bustle over email.
6. Think About The Positive Features About Your Job
Instead of focusing on what you hate about your job, concentrate on what you love about it to help fight those Monday Blues. “Remind yourself of things you enjoy about work: satisfaction, co-workers, challenges,” says Koenig.
7. Schedule Mid-Week Future Plans
It’s easier to overcome the Monday Blues if you know you have something to look forward to toward the middle of the week. “Build in pleasures during the work week that you can look forward to, especially mid-week to get you over hump day,” says Koenig.
8. Switch Your Thinking
In addition to setting positive intentions, positively talk to yourself about how awesome Mondays actually are. Instead of thinking that Mondays are the worst, focus on how grateful you are to have a job and why you like it. “Stop focusing and telling yourself how much you dread going to work on Mondays; instead, tell yourself how you want to feel when you head to work,” says Koenig.
9. Repair & Prepare During The Weekend
While you want to have fun during the weekend, beat the Monday blues by preparing and repairing the day before. “Take the weekend to repair and disconnect from work to mentally prepare for the following week. It can help to prepare sometime during the weekend by making a to-do list to get everything in order before Monday. Doing this will not only let you enjoy your weekend a lot more, but start the first day of the week breathing a little easier,” says Dean.
10. Get Dressed Up
You may feel better if you feel and look your best. The night before, pick out a chic outfit so you have something to look forward to Monday morning. “No saying is truer than, ‘If you look good, you feel good.’ If youвЂ™re feeling a little sluggish when Monday rolls around, dress to impress yourself. The confidence a woman [or man] gets in looking her [or him] best gives her [or him] a powerful attitude to conquer the work week,” says Dean.
11. Listen To Music
Listening to happy music can alter your mood for the better. Bring your headphones with you so you can listen to your tunes on the way to work to put you in the right frame of mind. “Music impacts your mood for your work, so choosing to listen to a song that you enjoy and can put a smile on your face helps put some energy behind the grunt work. Play some of your favorite feel-good songs to start the day off right and keep it going through that afternoon slump,” says Dean.
While some may consider Monday to be the worst day of the week, you, on the other hand, will learn to make the most of it. Take charge of your Mondays by getting dressed up, listening to music, and setting positive intentions for the day. Soon Mondays may even become your favorite day of the week. Maybe.
Grey skies, cold weather, holiday stress and other factors can all contribute to winter blues. It’s fairly common and can make for a long winter if you don’t take action to boost your mood. Some people turn to caffeine, alcohol, drugs, overworking or even denial when faced with winter blahs but those just make it worse. I have some healthy ways to help you beat the winter blues.
Beat the Winter Blues: 7 Healthy Ways to Battle the Blahs
1 – Self-Care and Reducing Stress
This can be one of the hardest things to do. Some of you would rather take a pill than try to find time for self-care and reducing stress. There is no pill to replace this. It is so important for your health and for your ability to be there for others. We have tips for finding ways to reduce stress. Find what works for you whether that’s reading a book, getting a massage or taking a float. It’s important and will help you battle the blahs.
2 – Give Up Inflammatory Foods
Your food affects your mood! Inflammatory foods can really mess up your gut which you probably already know. The majority of people have gut problems and need to pay attention to what their poop is telling them. What you might not realize is that the gut is where the majority of your neurotransmitters are made, and those neurotransmitters affect your mood. If you want to have a chance against winter blues, you have to give your gut a chance by giving up foods that cause inflammation. Avoid foods like dairy, gluten, sugar, and other foods that cause inflammation.
3 – Have Some Chocolate
Do you need a reason to have more chocolate? It helps boost your mood! Chocolate is full of nutrients and antioxidants that help your body function optimally. It also helps boost some of those mood regulating neurotransmitters that can help get us out of our winter funk. Chocolate can increase dopamine, phenylethylamine, oxytocin and serotonin. Chocolate is one of the best foods on the planet for serotonin.
Enjoy that chocolate but make sure it’s the real, dark chocolate not loaded with milk, sugars and chemicals.
4 – Make Regular Chiropractic Adjustments a Habit
Making regular chiropractic adjustments a habit will help keep your mood in alignment. Traumas, big and small, can cause subluxations, or misalignments in the vertebrae. These subluxations affect the nervous system and neurotransmitters like the ones that affect our moods.
When you think of a misalignment you might think of something big like a car accident, but it can be something small too. Yes, a fall on the ice can do it too but think smaller too. Think bad posture, sleep positions, carrying heavy bags, shoveling, or even a sneeze. That’s why regular chiropractic appointments are so important. Find a chiropractic clinic near you to keep your mood in alignment.
5 – Take Time to Exercise
There are so many benefits to exercise for a healthy body and a happy one! Exercise gets your blood moving, endorphins going and has even been shown to improve your gut health. Exercise has been shown to be more effective at reducing depression than prescription pills for some people. (1) Find ways to exercise that are sustainable for you and make it fun. If you hate running, don’t run. There are lots of exercise options. What do you like to do? Do that! Martial arts, Zumba, biking, ice skating, yoga, or even just walking regularly can boost your mood.
6 – Get Your Vitamin D
Most people don’t get enough Vitamin D in the winter (and unfortunately summer too). Vitamin D is an amazing hormone that you can get from foods and that your body makes when your skin is exposed to the sun. It is part of many biological processes and supports not only a healthy body but a happy one too! Vitamin D has been linked to depression and taking Vitamin D supplements has been shown to prevent depression. (2)
You can get Vitamin D from foods like tuna, salmon, mackerel, mushrooms and eggs. There are also great supplements to help boost your levels and your mood.
7 – Sweat in the Sauna
During a cold winter a sauna probably sounds pretty nice to warm you up. There’s also a lot of anecdotal evidence that suggests it can boost your mood. I know I feel great after time in a sauna, especially in the winter. There are also studies that have shown that a sauna session can reduce depression. One study showed a 50% reduction in depression for those with major depression who had a sauna treatment versus a similar treatment without the heat. (3) Sweat out those winter blues with a sauna session! You can often find them at a local gym.
Enjoy the Season by Beating Winter Blues
A healthy lifestyle can help you prevent and beat the winter blues. It’s also important to find time to enjoy the season. It’s a time for getting cozy with self-reflection but also a great time to enjoy winter activities with friends. Don’t let winter blahs take the joy out of the season. Like I say, it’s about enjoying the journey and the journey includes winter!
Every Monday morning our social media newsfeeds are filled with posts about how much everyone hates Mondays. Whether you’ve had a fun weekend or you were catching up on errands, it can be tough to transition back to the routine of the workweek. Mondays are tough for everyone, but you shouldn’t have to spend your Sundays feeling dread for the next day or be in a bad mood all day Monday. Did you know studies have found that most adults don’t smile until around 11:30am on Monday? What a sad study! You can make your Monday a lot better by figuring out ways to incorporate fun activities easing back into the workweek. Here’s how to beat the Monday blues.
Photo Credit: Toa Heftiba
1. Start prepping from Sunday
To help your Monday morning go smooth and relaxed verses stressed and hurried, start prepping for it from Sunday night.
- Get to bed early so you can get enough zzz’s and wake up feeling refreshed
- Plan your outfit the night before. Pick something that makes you feel good about yourself
- Pack anything you might need for the day and it set it in front of the door so that you don’t forget to take it with you
- Plan your schedule for the week. Schedule in workouts, fun activities, what you need to get done, etc
2. Start your morning with something fun
Get your morning off to a good start by doing something relaxing or fun. It’ll make your Monday feel a little more like a weekend and put you in a happier mood before you head off to work. You might have to wake up a little earlier to fit it in but it’ll make such a difference in your day that it might be worth it.
- Blast your favorite music and dance around while you’re getting ready
- Sit outside and savor a cup of coffee instead of gulping it down on your way out the door
- Get in a fun workout like a walk outside or a boxing class
3. Have a yummy breakfast waiting for you
Getting out of a warm and comfy bed on Monday morning is a little more bearable if you have a yummy breakfast waiting for you to the fridge. Set your coffee maker on a timer so you wake up the smell of yummy coffee and make your breakfast on Sunday night.
Photo Credit: Brooke Lark
Make ahead breakfast ideas:
- Greek yogurt, nut, and fruit parfait. Experiment with different combinations. Our current fave: Greek yogurt, pumpkin puree, cinnamon, walnuts, little bit of granola, banana, chia seeds, and a little bit of honey
- Sandwich made out of whole-wheat waffles with peanut butter and banana slices
- Green smoothie
- Protein packed pancakes or muffins
4. Reframe the way you think of Mondays
Attitude is everything. Put on a bright sunny face and pretend to like Mondays and you just might feel a little better. We feel like a lot of the dread that comes along with Mondays is just the negativity associated with Monday. It’s become our ritual to hate on Mondays and while it might be fun to bond with your co-workers over that hate, it also puts you in a downer mood. Try these tricks to brighten up your Monday attitude.
- On Sunday nights make a list of three things you’re excited about for the week
- Start thinking of Mondays as a fresh new start to the week
- When you get to work on Monday morning, make a list of goals you EXCITED to accomplish this week (Tip: even if you aren’t excited, pretend you are!)
- Smile at everyone you see! Especially your barista as you pick up your morning latte. She’s probably used to people screaming at her Monday morning (Sad, but true!)
- Do NOT give in to bashing Monday with your friends and co-workers. Turn the topic of conversation into something positive. It’ll be a lot better for everyone!
5. Start your work day with a clean slate
Photo credit: Brooke Lark
To go along with your positive attitude from the previous tip, start ACTING like Monday is a fresh start to the week by giving yourself a blank new slate to work with.
- Run a sanitizing wipe along your desk and keyboard when you get into work that morning
- Throw out all your old post-it notes and to-do lists from last week and write fresh new ones
- Clear out your drawers and clean the top of your desk before you leave for work on Friday
- Have a productive (but not stressful) day to set the tone for the rest of the week! We tend to purposefully schedule less meetings on Mondays
6. End the day with fun plans
Fun activities don’t have to be reserved just for the weekend. Try to think of something fun you can do after work so you have something to look forward to on Mondays.
- Replace your usual Sunday brunch with a Monday dinner and recap the weekend with your friends
- Check out a new happy hour spot with your co-workers
- Try a fun workout class
- Make Monday night your date night
7. Make your work day more fun
Take effort to incorporate things you like into your workday. It will help make Mondays less painful if you have fun activities sprinkled throughout the day.
- Take some time to catch up with your co-workers and talk about what you did over the weekend
- Plan one of your meetings to be over coffee or lunch
- Put your favorite project or client on schedule for that day
- Listen to music while you work (Here’s a good playlist)
- Bring in your favorite donuts to share with your co-workers
8. Is it more than a case of the Monday blues?
If you try all these suggestions and it doesn’t help make your Monday any better or if thinking about work fills you with dread and anxiety, take some time to think about why that is and try to come up with a solution. Do you hate the project you’re currently on? See if you can switch to another project. Is one your co-workers giving you a hard time? See if you can talk to that person and resolve the issue. Do you not feel passionate about the work you are doing? Figure out what is you do feel passionate about and if there is a way you can incorporate that into your work. If it’s truly more than a case of the Monday Blues, the solution just may be a new job.
What are some of your favorite ways to beat the Monday Blues? We’d love to hear your ideas!