Blue Monday is nearly upon us. The name and concept, originally coined by a UK Travel Company, was said to have come from an equation which found the third Monday of January to be the gloomiest, most depressing day of the year.
It’s later been dismissed by scientists as being completely unfounded.
But, whatever your thoughts on the whole notion of Blue Monday, January can feel like a long month – dark nights, cold weather, the excitement of Christmas behind us and trying to sustain those well-intentioned but unrealistic New Year’s Resolutions.
We say why not use it as an excuse to make time for some small joys at this time of year (or at any time of year, for that matter!).
In this article, we share some of our favourite ways to boost our mood…
Take a walk outside
When it’s freezing outside, we might feel like staying inside and hibernating. But getting outside in fresh air and daylight can work wonders for our mood – as well as getting those all-important daily steps in.
Working office hours can mean that it’s dark when you leave the house and dark when you get home- so make the most of your lunch break. Wrap up warm, take your favourite hot drink and get outside; even just 10 minutes can have a positive impact.
Have lunch with a colleague
January tends to be a quieter month for socialising – but don’t underestimate the power of good catch up with a friend or a colleague. If you’re feeling the January slump and are in need of a boost, chances are someone you know will be too. Afterall, a problem shared is a problem halved.
De-clutter your desk / inbox
As the saying goes a tidy desk is a tidy mind!
If all of those times you said ‘that sounds like a 2023 problem’ in December are eventually coming home to roost, then you might find it helpful to spend some time getting organised ready for the year ahead.
Don’t let it be counterproductive; set small, realistic goals each day – to tidy one drawer or sort one email folder so you don’t feel overwhelmed.
Do a random act of kindness
Aside from putting a smile on someone’s face, helping others is a proven way to make you feel better too.
And the best bit is that there is no limit on how often you can show kindness to others! From paying for someone’s morning coffee, volunteering at a local good cause, or offering to go shopping for an elderly neighbour, there are endless ways you can brighten up someone’s day, and your own, in turn.
Try something new
If you’ve ever had a burning desire to get into knitting, martial arts, beekeeping (or anything else that tickles your fancy!), why not use this quieter month to take the plunge! Research groups in your local area – it could be a great way to meet new like-minded people too.
Have a self-care evening
In January, we can often find ourselves feeling the pinch after the festive season, and a full-blown spa day might be out of the question. Why not bring the spa to you and set a whole evening aside to use up all those smellies you got for Christmas!