The third Monday in January – dubbed Blue Monday as a publicity stunt – has become stuck with the title. It has stuck because it makes a great story and, for many living in the northern hemisphere, it is midwinter, cold, wet, dark and in the perception of many, miserable. It is also the time when the as-yet-unpaid December bills are likely to drop on the mat and both the frivolity of Christmas and the warmth of spring seem a long way off.
So, what to do about it?
1. Recognise it is all a myth!
It isn’t real. We don’t have to buy into the depressing hype. Misery is not obligatory!
2. Factor in the fun!
If you live in Shetland, you launch into the party of the year that is Up Helly Aa on the last Tuesday in January. This involves the burning of life-size replicas of Viking Long Boats and partying ‘til dawn. If you like skiing, it is the perfect time to head to the slopes. And if you enjoy films, those dark evenings are perfect for snuggling up and catching up on Netflix. If none of that floats your boat, the spirit of hygge can be brought alive with a romantic candlelit evening. Spoil yourself. It isn’t selfish. It is common sense. If you don’t look after yourself, you can’t look after others.
3. Explore your reality.
Unlike Blue Monday, Seasonal Effective Disorder (SAD) is not a myth, which means this time of year can be tough for many. What is the reality for you? Are you one of those for whom the arrival of winter also heralds the arrival of low mood, lethargy, and a desire to hibernate until it all goes away? If so, recognising this is the first step to being able to do something about it.
4. Take action.
If you are one of those who struggle with the winter season, don’t suffer in silence; seek help. It is available in many forms. Check out this link on Mind’s website to discover more.
5. Take back control. Let’s start a Blue Monday rebellion!
If you would like more information, get in touch. We are always happy to help and can direct you to more resources and useful information. Contact me at [email protected]
With thanks to Anne Burgess (Creative Commons).