Monday morning blues hit all of us at some time or another. But with a little advance planning you can actually start looking forward to the beginning of the new week
Monday, the pimple on your nose, the bubble gum on your new high heels, the pigeon dropping on your starched linen shirt. When the Carpenters dolefully declared ‘Rainy days and Mondays always get me down,’ they were echoing what most of us feel as we drag ourselves off for another sparring week at work. There’s no escaping them unless you migrate to the Middle East where you’ll end up dreading Saturday mornings. The blues are bound to strike but you can halt them in their track if you plan ahead.
There’s actually a scientific explanation behind that heaviness in the pit of your stomach as Sunday evenings draw to a close. Our internal clocks naturally operate on a day that’s longer than 24 hours. By the time Monday rolls around each week, we’ve built up a sleep deficit of at least an hour. And all those late nights and weekend revelry doesn’t help either. But we can do some things to stop feeling like Rip Van Winkle as we stumble into the office in a daze while some hated bright eyed and bushy tailed co-workers throw us superior, pitying glances.
Even before the weekend begins, you start preparing for Monday. Put in a little extra time before you dash off to that Friday night out and finish everything that needs to get done. Resist the urge to put things off till Monday. Stave off the urge to slip into that glitzy new blouse you picked up for tonight or try on that new, glossy lipstick. You’ll probably feel like the new office martyr but it’ll make Mondays a little easier to deal with. Draw up a to-do list for the week ahead when things are still fresh in your head so you can enjoy the weekend without tossing and turning on Sunday night stressing about the things you’ve forgotten to do.
Unless increment or appraisal time’s looming, don’t work on weekends. But that doesn’t mean you should hare around town without a break. Weddings, lunches, haircuts, gossip sessions with the girls, visiting in-laws, attending your son’s school concert...phew! Don’t jam your weekend with activities. Allocate some down time too, learn to be selective about what you plan on doing, and sleep at a decent hour on Sunday night. Whether you like it or not, your body needs its forty winks.
Here are some easy tips on beating those Monday blues and getting a headstart on the week!
Try and sleep in a little longer on Monday mornings.
You can achieve the impossible by spending a little time ironing your clothes, preparing those lunch boxes and manicuring your nails the night before. Marion, a journalist who dreaded Monday mornings because they meant going back to face an unreasonable, short-tempered boss, devised an innovative stress-buster. She says, “Mondays aren’t a chore since I pasted a picture of her (the boss) on the wall and practiced my dart skills on it. Now I walk in with a cheery smile much to her amazement.”
Try and fit in some early morning exercise even if it means getting up half an hour earlier.
It’s definitely more effective than tossing and turning ineffectually worrying about the week ahead and the workout will release feel-good endorphins that’ll make you feel on top of the world. Besides, hopping out of bed as soon as you awake will stop the lingering agony of a weekend past.
Start the day with a hot shower with your favorite bath gel and end it with a jolt of cold water to shake off all lingering signs of grogginess.
Listen to some music as you slip into your clothes. Wear an outfit that makes you feel slim and confident and spritz yourself with your most expensive perfume. If nothing else, the compliments you’ll receive will have you running back to work!
Give yourself a pep talk, remind yourself of all the things that keep you going back, even if it’s only the pay check at the end of the month or the cute guy in marketing. Reminding yourself of the things you love about your job will keep negative emotions in check.
Forget about your diet for just one morning.
Eat a piece of chocolate or a slice of white bread thickly slathered with jam or butter. Drinka cup of black or green coffee, or some caffeinated beverage. Although it’s not healthy to drink caffeine to the point of addiction, it can give your Monday morning that much-needed oomph and alertness. Call a friend on the way to work to rave and rant about the Monday blues. You’re sure to find more than enough members for the “I hate Monday Mornings Club”.
Try and get in a little early to work. Start working on something you enjoy first thing on Monday till you get into the groove.
This way you’ll have established a rhythm before your colleagues trundle in looking weary and grumpy. You’ll also be able to set your own pace, catch up on e-mails and fix appointments without getting stressed out by the flurry of activity around you.
Make plans for the coming weekend. This’ll get you wanting to zip through the week.
Use your lunch break to plan ahead, and when you know that you have to finish your work by Friday evening, you’ll certainly work faster and more efficiently.
And if all else fails, remind yourself that the weekend’s just five days away!