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Crushing the Monday Blues

In a previous blog, I discussed the why of the Sunday Scaries. Now let’s talk about the Monday Blues. What are the Monday blues? Does the start of your work week trigger overwhelming anxiety or stress? Do you lack passion and motivation on Monday morning and find it hard to get up and go? If you are nodding your head, then welcome to the clan.

How can we get ahead and sit in a better mental and physical position when Monday rolls around? Are we doomed to hate Mondays, or can we appreciate the opportunities? Creating sound routines and eliminating sinkholes will be the right ticket for a winning Sunday reset. Here are some ideas.

Detach and Detox

Believe it or not, “dumb” phones are on the rise. Why? Because people are starting to understand the mental health issues around being plugged in 24/7. People are not happy with the feeling that their job always expects them to be on call. Doom scrolling and doom surfing might seem harmless, but you can feel drained and disheartened by the constant influx of negative news. Indeed, this is not the best use of your time off or how you want to engage the coming week. So, silence all those notifications, emails, texts, and social media. Be intentional about where your precious attention is being spent and unhook from those screens to experience a full recharge of your batteries.

Plan Fun

Why not plan fun into our schedule? All work and no play is a recipe for burnout. Intentionally planning leisure and joy has many incredible benefits. It sure gives us something to look forward to in the upcoming week. But it also helps us stay connected with family and friends when we lock in a dinner with pals or call someone we have not talked to in a while. Like me, you have some hobbies sitting around unloved because there is never enough time. And how about all of the summer activities in your area just begging you to participate? Make time for things you will actually enjoy and look forward to. Since you are unplugged from your screens on Sunday, use that bonus time to schedule your week with more than just obligations and work.

Meal Planning and Prepping

Back in the day, trying to come up with a meal on the fly for my family was exhausting. No wonder Mondays felt like the kickoff of a stressful week. We often just threw something together with whatever happened to be in the pantry or grabbed some fast food. Then the mom’s guilt set in over not having a healthy diet. A little meal planning and prepping could have alleviated my mom’s guilt so I could enjoy my family at dinner time. Better options would have gone a long way towards eating better while not being tempted by the drive-thru fast food trap.

Clear the Decks

Just spending some quick time getting reset for the upcoming week can feel amazing. Tidy up your bedroom by quickly picking up the floor and putting up all those clothes you laid on that exercise machine. Change your bed sheets, and look forward to sliding into those clean sheets at bedtime. Pick up the living room and return stuff to their designated places. Wipe off the counters and put dishes on the drainer back in the cabinet. Clear off your desk and prepare it for the next day’s work. Sort through your mail and shred all that’s not important. All small quick things you can do without a lot of overthinking, but the benefits can be huge for peace of mind.

Imagine how satisfying it will be on Monday morning when you are not overwhelmed by the clutter or trying to find the things you need. Or turn on upbeat music to get you in the groove. Call it your Sunday sweep for a better Monday launch.

Prepare for Mondays on Fridays

Work piled up from the previous week can make a Monday extremely draining. Take care of the things you least like earlier in the week if possible, but certainly don’t leave them for late on Fridays when thoughts of the relaxing weekend are paramount. Since you will unlikely do the unpleasant jobs on a Friday, Monday will be a bummer. And clear the decks at work before you leave for home on Fridays. Tidy your desk by putting everything back in its home and clearing off the top. Spend a little time ensuring your calendar is current and get a good view of the coming week. Take some time to leave yourself breadcrumb notes on unfinished work to jump back in quickly. Ensure your to-do list is updated and ready when you show up on Monday. And when possible, keep your Monday work schedule light so you can easily roll into the week. Schedule meetings or complicated tasks for Tuesday or Wednesday and keep Mondays for routine stuff.

Get Enough Sleep

You will not feel optimistic about going anywhere if you’re sleep deprived, and going to bed late on Sunday can be the domino that crashes the whole week. What if you go to bed a little earlier on Sunday night and get up 15 – 30 minutes earlier on Monday morning? Imagine how nice it would be to take a leisurely stroll or enjoy that first cup of coffee on the patio before heading out to work. That would be a much nicer transition than hitting that snooze button multiple times and then being trapped in a time crunch of stress.

Be Mindful of Your Headspace

The Monday Blues are just as contagious as a rhinovirus, so stay far away from those infected and don’t catch their anxiety and negativity. Do your best to take an attitude of gratitude and focus on what’s right. Build boundaries to limit your time around the usual whiners and complainers.

How about kick starting the week with an uplifting thought or affirmation? Affirmations are short sentences you can repeat to boost your mental and emotional well-being. How do we reverse or replace negative thoughts? We shift our frame of mind. Phrases like “I choose to be happy this week” or “Each day is a new opportunity” can build our confidence. Write your affirmation in your planner and repeat it aloud or in your head at the start of each day. Write the affirmations on sticky notes and attach them to your bathroom mirror.

In summary, match your Sunday reset routine to what you know works best for you. Choose to be intentional and focus on self-care specific to your needs. Decide what is essential to slide into the upcoming week smoothly and then make a process like clockwork every Sunday. Live your entire week with more intention and put the Monday blues in your rearview mirror.

Katherine Jahnke

Katherine Jahnke

ADHD Coach and Life Coach, Executive Skills Coach, Owner/Founder