Managing the Sunday Blues
I can honestly say that I look more forward to Mondays now than I do Fridays. I love what I do and I love where I do it, it's pretty simple. However, the path getting here was not nearly as simple! In fact it has taken me more than 15 years to get to where I am today. I have always loved my profession but not always the places where I would have to perform my given tasks. I am all too familiar with getting the Sunday blues and wishing that Monday would remain at bay.
The feeling of Sunday blues really refers to that anticipatory feelings we get as the weekend winds down and we have to start facing the reality of needing to "adult" again starting Monday. It is not unlike the feeling we had as a child when Summer break was coming to a close. However, now as adults we have to experience it weekly. It is a fairly normal response for those who either do not want to return to their current job or school in the upcoming week.
Having the sense of dread might not always come from being dissatisfied with your job or school but also from the anxiety surrounding upcoming tasks. This could take the form of having a lot of unfinished business or tasks to attend to upon returning to work. It could be knowing the you have finals fast approaching. As anxiety rises about those tasks the feeling of dread floods our bodies and minds.
So what can be done to help stave off the Sunday blues? As with most issues there are preemptive actions and reactive actions. If the dread is coming from the dissatisfaction you have with work or school then making a needed change in those areas might be your best bet!
1. Consider looking for new employment or a new position at your current job (let's be honest, sometimes it is our boss the we dread more than work!).
2. You might think about changing your major to something that is more suitable for your personality or reduce your credits in a given semester.
Some other ways to reduce Sunday dread on an ongoing basis is by reducing your anxiety in general.
1. Practicing regular mindfullness through relaxation breathing and meditation can be incredibly helpful! This will help you focus on the here and now in an attempt to reduce thinking ahead to the week which can lead to those feelings of dread.
2. While at work think ahead to ways you can prioritize tasks so you are leaving too many things undone on Friday. This will reduce that overwhelming feeling you might have when coming into work Monday. The same applies to school, do not procrastinate!
3. Accumulate positive feelings throughout the week and on the weekend. This accumulation with put some positiveness in the "bank" that you can draw upon come Monday. I recommend doing something positive for yourself each day in a mindfull way. It could be simple like getting your favorite coffee drink, going to the gym, watching a TV show, doing yoga or talking with a friend.
4. Plan ahead for happiness! Schedule some positive things for your week. This will give you something to look forward to so you are not dreading your week as much and it will also serve #3 above; accumulating positive feelings during the week.
Not unlike how physical aches and pains alert us to make physical changes...emotional aches and pains send us signals to change something that is affecting us emotionally. Listen to yourself and adjust accordingly! You have the power!