The holidays are over and it’s back to work or school for most people. And, along with getting back to the routine comes “Blue Monday”—the most miserable day of the year, according to some British researchers.
Researchers analyzed over 2 million tweets over three years and found that the first Monday back to work in the New Year is the day when people post the most negative tweets. There are five times the number of tweets mentioning “guilt” over abandoning New Year’s resolutions. There are six times the usual number of tweets mentioning gloomy weather. And according to DivorceDepot.co.uk, there are more divorces initiated on Blue Monday than any other day of the year. DivorceDepot.co.uk indicates that over 1.8 million people had arguments with their significant other during the holidays with finances, excessive drinking, in-laws, and chores topping the list of argument topics.
British newspaper The Independent indicates that there is a 25% increase in extra-marital affairs after the holidays are over.
If you’re feeling blue, disheartened by the return to work, or overwhelmed by arguments during the holidays, here are 6 ways to turn today into a better day:
1. Before making any major life decisions you might want to take a few days to think things through. It’s rarely a good idea to make serious decisions on days you’re feeling most depressed. So, if the research is true that we’re more likely to be depressed today, wait a few days to see if you still feel the same way about aspects of your life that are bringing you down.
2. Skip the extra-marital affair. If you’re unhappy with your marriage show your partner (and yourself!) some respect by making an effort to work things through. If you’re already past that point, have the integrity to admit the relationship isn’t working and move on rather than cheat on your partner. No matter how unhappy you may be in your relationship, your partner doesn’t deserve the pain and betrayal of cheating… not to mention the possibility of sexually-transmitted disease.
3. If you’ve fallen off the wagon with your New Year’s resolutions, jump back on. Every day holds the opportunity for a fresh start in life. Make today the day that you recommit to your goals. And, if you’re finding them too difficult perhaps set goals that are more manageable.
4. Skip the sugar, alcohol, and high carb foods you may have indulged in over the holidays. They contribute to blood sugar fluctuations that can cause mood fluctuations and depression.
5. Go for a walk outdoors to get some mood-lifting oxygen-rich air and sunshine. If it’s just too cold for you, open a window a crack and take some deep breaths.
6. If you’re not getting much sunshine these days (few people are) supplement with vitamin D. Most experts recommend 1000 to 2000 IU daily of vitamin D to help boost the body’s production of serotonin—the “feel good” hormone. Never take higher amounts of vitamin D unless you’re under the guidance of a qualified health professional.
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