In recent years, Blue Monday has become the term by which the ‘most depressing day of the year’ takes place, falling on the 16th of January this year. A combination of factors is believed to cause an overall sense of glumness, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Smiling and laughing are known to lift spirits and change our mood around, so make sure you beat Blue Monday and laugh your way through it.

 

Why Blue Monday?

Following research carried out by UK psychologist Dr. Cliff Arnall, an equation was created to determine the most depressing day of the year, based on a number of factors. The post-Christmas slump, weight gain, empty bank account and poor weather were all taken into account, establishing which day Blue Monday would fall. Whilst the research lacks scientific evidence, it grows in popularity each year, with a number of media outlets highlighting the date.

 

Beating Blue Monday

Whilst Blue Monday will pass many people by without a second thought, if you, or people you know are feeling particularly down on this date, there are some great ideas for things you can do to cheer yourself and others up. Even if you’re not affected by Blue Monday, there’s no harm in adding a little cheer to your own and other’s days. Some suggestions for things you can do include:

Start your day with exercise

Exercise is a proven mood booster, and a short burst of exercise in the morning could help you to feel more energised and help take your mind off things. For those who are feeling down about the weight they have gained over the Christmas period, this could be an excellent kick-starter to your new weight loss regime. If you’re not a fan of exercise, why not try something fun? Try a new dance craze or do some sort of challenge with friends in a daft costume for charity.

Do something nice for others

Rather than dwelling on how you’re feeling, do something kind to make someone else’s day by making them laugh or smile. Doing something for others can help you feel good, boosting your own mood in the process. Volunteer or treat your colleagues, the gesture will be appreciated and you can take your mind off your mood by putting your efforts into planning something for others.

Indulge in comedy

Fill your day with comedy! Whether you like to watch funny YouTube videos, live comedy or a comedy film or TV show, there are plenty of options available to help you get a few laughs during the day. With dedicated comedy channels as well as on-demand services, there are many options available for helping you find content easily.

 

Blue Monday and mental health

Blue Monday is just one day a year, but mental health is an ongoing concern which needs to be addressed. Mental health charity Mind, released a statement on their website which said:

“Those of us who live with depression know that these feelings aren’t dictated by the date. Implying that they are perpetuates the myth that depression is just ‘feeling a bit down’, something that doesn’t need to be taken seriously.”

For many people, depression isn’t something which can be limited to one day and is something that needs to be highlighted and addressed. Whilst Blue Monday may not have much scientific backing, it could help those who have or know someone with ongoing feelings of depression recognise that they have an issue, and help them seek treatment.

It’s important that those suffering with mental health concerns get the support they need. If you or someone you know is struggling, there is help available. Booking an appointment with your GP is the first step towards getting treatment and care for your condition and will show that you aren’t alone in how you’re feeling. The NHS Choices site has a wealth of information on various mental health topics which can offer support and advice for those who need it.

Laugh your way through Blue Monday and make sure that the 16th of January doesn’t get you down.