Do you suffer from the Sunday blues?

By Robert Half on 18 February 2019

We all know that feeling.

You're relaxing on the couch on Sunday evening, reminiscing over the great weekend you've just spent with friends and family - when suddenly the knowledge that you're back to work tomorrow creeps into your mind.

The Sunday blues is a real phenomenon. So how can you overcome them once and for all?

This blog explores what the Sunday blues really are, and shares some tips to help you nip them in the bud.

What are the Sunday blues?

According to Health Psychologist, Dr Marny Lishman, the Sunday blues can cause the feelings of “hopelessness, apathy and irritability, as well as depression and insomnia”. It is a feeling that can impact almost anyone, whether you're an intern or a CEO. It can be driven by several factors, from worries about job performance and the stress of increasing demands, to the struggle to disconnect, caused by the access of remote working. Even those who love their job can be filled with dread at the thought of Monday, but there are several things you can do to help beat those Sunday blues:

1. Get organised on Friday

Before you leave the office on Friday, try to tie up any loose ends. Declutter your desk and create a to-do list for Monday, so you know exactly what you need to do when you return to the office. Getting organised early can help you enjoy the weekend without worrying about the next week to come.

2. Enjoy some work downtime

Although it can sometimes be hard to switch off from work completely, it's important to be able to rest and recharge. Consider the work approach of the French, where employees have won the legal right to avoid checking emails out-of-hours to help prevent burnout.

3. Get your chores out of the way on Saturday

Do you leave all your boring chores to Sunday? Instead of getting stressed paying your bills, doing your washing or going food shopping right before you return to work, get them out of the way at the start of the weekend.

4. Make the most of Sundays

Instead of worrying about the week ahead, do something fun with your time. Meet up with friends, go shopping, go out for a meal or visit somewhere new. Exercise such as jogging or yoga is also a great way to release “feel-good” endorphins and reduce anxiety.

5. Take time to relax

As well as having fun, use Sunday evenings to wind down and clear your mind, to help you recharge and feel ready for the week ahead. Try listening to music, read a good book or enjoy a relaxing bath. If you set appropriate boundaries and enjoy you downtime, you're less like to stress about impending work.

6. Have something to look forward to

Who says your weekend is the only time you can have fun? Get your work-life balance in order so you can enjoy down-time during the week too. Arrange little things you can look forward to, such as an impromptu meal with a friend after work, or catching up with an old colleague during your lunch break.

7. Get enough sleep

Many people dread Mondays because it can leave you feeling drained and worn out. However, this could be because of all those lazy lie-ins over the weekend, which disturb your internal body clock according to Business Insider. Aim to wake up and go to bed at a consistent time each day and ensure you get enough sleep so you can start the week (and each day) feeling rested.

8. Practice some positive thinking

What good does feeling miserable about Monday really do? Monday is going to come and go, regardless of how you feel. Therefore, try to think positively. Look back over everything you've enjoyed from the weekend, what you've got planned for the following weekend and what you'll enjoy during your week at work.

9. Understand your Sunday blues

Whilst you can carry out the steps above, it's also important to understand the underlying cause of your feelings. If you're just worried about an unpleasant task you've got lined up, or a deadline you've got to meet, these are all things you can do something about.

10. Consider a change

If you're still struggling to shift your Sunday blues, have you considered how it may be your job that is the catalyst for these feelings? If this is the case, it may be time for a change.

As soon as you feel Monday looming, it's common to feel like you need “just one more day”. But hopefully, by taking steps such as making the most of your weekends, planning some exciting activities and finding a job you truly love, you'll start to look forward to the week ahead. After time, your Sunday blues won't feel quite so bad after all.

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