06 Feb How To Improve Your Well-Being On Blue Monday And Throughout 2020
If you have already scrolled through any social media platform or read the headlines this morning you will be fully aware today is Blue Monday, allegedly THE most depressing day of the year. It comes on the third Monday of January every year so you can mark it in your calendars for 2021 and beyond!
Blue Monday didn’t exist until 2005 when it was created as a marketing strategy by a holiday company that year. It is only through trending hashtags, advertisements using the day as a fear tactic, and negative online articles pushing the phenomenon for clicks that the idea really took off.
Research shows that at any given time 1 in 4 of us in the UK may be experiencing some kind of mental health problem such as depression, stress or anxiety. While Blue Monday is being highlighted, we can use the trigger to actively consider our behaviour to improve our own mental well-being and the mental well-being of our peers.
Take time to maintain your relationships – Research shows that strong social relationships are linked to increases in happiness, and positively correlate to lifespan. Lacking positive social relationships can have the same long term effect as smoking 15 cigarettes each day. Make sure you don’t just say “I’ll Facebook or WhatsApp you” but actually schedule time to meet up with friends and family who make you feel positive and at your best. In turn, this maintenance is also vital within working relationships for positive team building, networking, mentoring, and supporting your peers and yourself. You are more likely to feel more confident, happier, experience less stress, and be more productive in achieving your daily goals.
Check your assumptions –We all make assumptions about ever person we encounter, and it can be very sobering when we have the experience of making a vastly incorrect assumption. So, in 2020, make this the time to step back and check your own assumptions of individuals you have known for a long time. Remember, circumstances change, every individual is forming new beliefs, attitudes, and thoughts by their experiences. Ask questions, listen, notice body language and behaviour, and take a moment before making an assumption from experience.
Treat Others With Kindness – Being kind to your partner, family, work colleagues, the person at the checkout, your waiter, the receptionist at the GP’s or the person taking your complaint on the phone can change their mood, uplift them, and make their day more positive as well as boost our own well-being. Instead of being frustrated or getting angry, take a moment to take a deep breath and remember calmness and kindness will be far better for everyone’s health.
Value Yourself and Ask Others How They Value You – Consider your Life List, and your different roles, challenges and goals you juggle in your life. If you feel you are only valued in one area or generally undervalued, do a Life Values List and encourage the individuals you respect in your life to give their opinions on how they value you as a person and how they view themselves in the same area of life. Ask for suggestions of a Team Member of the month, or nominate someone who has far exceeded the expectations of their job, and celebrate it – small rewards or extra holiday are always greatly appreciated and this encourages more effective and more positive productivity.
Blue Monday is just a name, a trending hashtag and marketing strategy, but being aware of our own thoughts, attitudes, and behaviour is vital for our own mental and physical well-being as well as every individual we communicate with on any day of the year. Share your positivity, kindness, appreciation and open mind today and throughout 2020 for everyone’s mutual benefit.
You can access the Mind charity website if you need support, advice or information on your own mental health, the impact in the workplace, and how to help others..