Facing the Sunday Blues: How to Take Back Your Weekend

By Cole Purvis
Person sitting at computer looking stressed out with head in their hands

Have you ever had those feelings of stress and anxiety – A.K.A. the Sunday Blues – creep into your Sunday afternoon? That apprehension to face Monday: the harbinger of a stressful work week ahead? You would not be alone.

What are the Sunday Blues?

The Sunday Blues, also referred to as the Sunday Scaries, describe this feeling of impending stress as the weekend comes to an end. In fact, a study conducted by The Sleep Judge suggests that more than three quarters of Americans experienced elevated anxiety on Sunday in anticipation of Monday and the following week. Furthermore, as many as 63% of people coincidentally attributed Sunday as the day they experience the most restless nights.

A whopping 95% of respondents believed this periodic stress was a direct result of work-related anxiety. But what really is at the source of our Sunday Blues? The popular theory explaining this phenomenon is that our anxiety is triggered by a combination of our fixation on weekend FOMO (fear of missing out) and the approaching responsibilities of the workweek ahead. Suffice to say, the Sunday Blues are an unfortunate reality that most face at some point in their life. Therefore, engaging in pastimes that help alleviate this stress can be a worthwhile endeavor, and will only serve to refresh our body, mind and spirit.

Sweat it out

Exercise is always a great (and healthy) option for reducing stress. Research from the Anxiety and Depression Association of America has found that regular exercise, for as little as 5 minutes a day, can alleviate feelings of anxiety. Moreover, exercise has been linked to an elevated mood, increased self-esteem and an overall better night’s sleep. Try incorporating some form of exercise into your routine if you experience a regular case of the Sunday Blues.

Write it down

According to the Mayo Clinic, writing down our thoughts and feelings via a journal or other form of writing is a great way to release otherwise pent-up emotions. A specified structure isn’t necessary. As long as your thoughts flow onto a page (or screen), your mind will feel more at ease. This casual style of writing is also a great resource for personal growth and self-reflection.

Treat your body right

The Mayo Clinic also suggests that a healthy diet can go a long way to reducing stress, as it is beneficial to your physical health. Similarly, it is important to minimize the intake of unhealthy substances, like caffeine or alcohol. This is not to say that these things should be entirely discounted from your diet, but rather enjoyed at appropriate times in moderation.

Enjoy yourself!

Rumor has it, the weekend is meant to be enjoyed! It may sound simple, but one of the best ways to prepare for the work week ahead of you is to thoroughly appreciate the little time you have to yourself. So set down your laptop, stop checking emails and take back control of your weekend. You will thank yourself on Monday morning.

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