Blue Monday. We're just NOT having it
Posted by PR Neom
Apparently, January 20th is the most depressing day of the year but we’re not having any of it.
OK so the cold dark nights aren’t really anyone’s cup of tea and the bank account may be looking a bit feeble after the festivities but instead of reflecting on the doom and gloom, we’re looking ahead and congratulating ourselves on what we’ve already achieved in the past fortnight - so why not join us?
If you followed our advice not to make resolutions and you set some achievable intentions instead, you’re already winning as you won’t have any of that horrid guilt hanging around. Missed an exercise class? Can’t say no to the chocolate biscuits? Go you, life would be boring otherwise. And let’s face it, if any anxieties or depressing thoughts do creep up on you, they’re hardly going to save themselves up for ‘Blue Monday’, they’ll pop up at any given occasion – which is why we’re here to help boost your mood (oh and help you feel less stressed, get better sleep and give you more energy) all year round.
But, if you do want to keep some quick mood-boosting manoeuvres in your back pocket for today, tomorrow, next week, or next month, here's some tried-and-tested tips we rate...
- Suggest a team lunch break. If you’re struggling to take screen breaks now you’re back at work why not instil a new habit once a week of grabbing lunch with your colleagues. Getting out of the office will lift your spirits and some laughter and chit chat could pep you up no end.
- Take a walk or go for a swim. Whether it’s filling your lungs with fresh air or immersing yourself in water, both of these activities are proven ways to help you feel more grounded, and less anxious and is why forest bathing and water therapy will continue to be a talking point this year. Plus, cold temperatures are known to activate the sympathetic nervous system and increase the brain’s ‘happy’ chemicals so don’t let the temperature put you off!
- Check in with yourself and those around you. In his new book, ‘Feel Better in 5’, Dr Rangan Chatteree describes how he plays the gratitude game with his family every night. Each has to answer five questions – What have you done today to make someone else happy? What has someone else done today to make you happy? What have you learned today? What have you done today to make yourself happy? How did you feel when you made someone else happy? By focusing on the positive aspects of the day, it helps any negative vibes dissipate. It works just as well if you do it on your own too.
- Create some rituals. Whether it’s lighting a candle when you get in, having a hot chocolate or herbal tea with your other half before bed, running yourself a bath or dedicating five minutes to stretch, these little snippets of self-care will soon become second nature and help you on the feel-good straight and narrow. You won’t even remember what was bothering you after a while.
- Breathe deep. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed, some focused breathing can flip things round and shrink that mountain back down into a molehill. Breath in slowly counting for eight, hold for between five and eight and then exhale doing the same. Repeat the exercise as much as you need to.
And, while we’re on the subject of ‘blue’ Monday, it’s worth noting that Pantone chose ‘classic blue’ as its colour of the year for 2020. Why? Because it signifies calm, confidence and connection and is a restful, tranquil colour. It’s also said to improve resilience and realign our thoughts so really, blue Monday is something that should be celebrated as a day of clarity not calamity.