The Sunday blues. No, that’s not the title of a country song. It’s that palpable melancholy-mixed-with-anxiety that we sometimes experience as the sun sets on our weekend and we contemplate the coming workweek. (Freaky but true: As Christiane Northrup, MD, notes, more people die from heart attacks on Mondays than any other day of the week. Crap!)
Whenever Monday comes, can people find you crying all of the time? Don’t get all doom and gloom just because your weekend’s screeched to a halt. Start looking forward to the start of your workweek by taking these steps:
Keep Sleep And Nutrition In Check
Burning the midnight oil on the weekends (read: staying up late and sleeping in) can wreak havoc on your energy and mood by “disrupting your more regulated weekday patterns,” says Fort Lauderdale psychologist Jamie Long, Psy.D. “Many weekend warriors… also overindulge in food and drink. But in several studies, weekend benders are linked to more anxiety and a dysphoric [unhappy] mood.” So keep yourself in check over the weekend by getting 7 to 9 hours of Z’s each night — and sticking to your normal eating and drinking habits. That way, you’ll be better able to view Monday with rose-colored glasses.
Inject Fun Into Your Monday A.M. Routine
Monday mornings often greet us with a flurry of email demands, clamoring kids and a to-do list of all the tasks we failed to accomplish over the weekend. Long has two suggestions for switching up this scenario: 1) “Organize your things on Sunday night to avoid being rushed Monday morning.” 2) “Add something pleasurable to your Monday routine.”
She recommends starting Mondays off right by indulging in a special breakfast, having sex with your main squeeze or pumping yourself up with some energizing tunes. “Food, sex and music all release feel-good neurotransmitters in our brains, and can help make the morning actually pleasant,” she says.
Extend Your Weekends
Why should Saturday and Sunday have all the fun? You’ll feel less blue on Mondays if you balance your fun throughout the week. “Studies show that individuals who are stressed at work tend to be much happier people on the weekend,” says Long. “So don’t only look forward to Saturday and Sunday: Try to spread out the joy and plan something pleasurable during the week.”
Think up ways you can work weekend-worthy activities into the rest of your workweek. An afternoon walk in the park with a coworker? A standing drink date with a friend? An after-work massage? Brainstorm ways to work small joys into each day possible.
Yes, some bosses, jobs or commitments can make Mondays a major buzzkill. If that happens, know that “things are going to get better,” says Northrup. “Approach Mondays with gratitude, and remember that your paycheck or job is likely providing you with what you need to make many other important things possible.”