How to Beat Blue Mondays
Was it harder than usual to get up today? Are you feeling a little lackluster at work? Don't worry. The whole world is in the same boat, according to Cardiff University's Cliff Arnall. The third Monday of January is always the year's most depressing day. He calls it "Blue Monday."
Arnall invented a formula taking into account six immediately identifiable factors: weather, debt, time since Christmas, time since failing new year's resolutions, low motivational levels, and the feeling of a need to take action. He found that all these things come to a head on the third Monday of the year. Websites have sprung up around the concept, including Bluemonday.org and Beatbluemonday.org.uk.
It's estimated that about 10 million Americans suffer from depression every year, Polly Rost, clinical director of Rost and Associates, a psychology clinic was quoted as saying in the York Daily Record. But that number could be even higher this year, due to the unemployment situation. And regardless of whether or not Blue Monday truly exists, this time of year, especially considering the weather in so many places, is particularly hard on people in the Northern Hemisphere.
Experts suggest the following ways to beat Blue Monday:
Get those endorphins flowing and that energy pumping
Try to focus on the positive:
Discipline yourself to look at the bright side, and when you start having negative thoughts, replace them with happier ones.
Get your feelings out to someone -- anyone. You don't have to talk about being depressed. Any kind of communication will help.
Listen to Music:
Music that reminds you of happier times and places can put you in a better mood.
Even if you're alone in your room, pump up the volume and get that blood flowing.
Set a schedule and stick to it. Eat at a certain time, go to bed at a designated hour -- don't permit yourself to waist time that could be devoted to sleeping.
Hello? Alcohol is a depressant. While you might think it makes you feel better, it actually brings you down.
Don't criticize yourself:
You're your own worst critic. Know that, and try to become your own best cheerleader.