If you struggle with getting up on Monday morning, or just feel un-motivated and lazy throughout the day then you probably have a case of the “Monday Blues.” Although it is pretty common place to have the Monday blues, sometimes they can affect our performance and productivity at work. When we are feeling blue we are more likely to become unmotivated, unproductive, pessimistic and less creative.
For the longest time, Mondays were not my thing. I absolutely dreaded Monday morning like the plague and was tempted to call in sick at work. Sometimes, I still hate Mondays. Despite all this I have found that I don’t struggle with Mondays now as much as I did before and a lot of the time it feels like another opportunity to achieve something. To beat the Monday blues, these are some of the things I have found to be helpful;
- Have a relaxing weekend. As much as possible unplug from your work. Try to draw distinctions between your work time and personal time. Do your best to resist the urge to look at emails and avoid bringing work home. The danger with bringing your work home is that by the end of the weekend you will feel tired and won’t feel like you had a weekend at all.
- Sleep early and rise early. Try to go to bed early on Sunday night and keep the partying and late nights for Saturday. If you are too tired in the morning, chances are you are not going to want to go anywhere anyway which will make getting up early very difficult. When you sleep early you are more likely to rise up early. The wonderful thing about waking up early is you will have more time for yourself before you have to go deal with the world and its problems. When you wake up early you can pray/meditate, exercise and eat a healthy breakfast instead of feeling rushed in the morning which will only make you feel cranky and disorganized.
- Have a fun morning routine. Find something that makes it easier and fun to get ready for your day like a killer playlist or a devotional, and make it part of your Monday morning routine. I find that the smallest pleasures can quickly lift your spirits and change your outlook and attitude for the day.
- Plan your Monday/weekly to-do list on Friday. It helps to go into the weekend knowing exactly what awaits you on Monday. Not only does this help you mentally prepare and strategize but it also prepares you psychologically to face the week. Try not to wait until Monday to plan your week. You might get overwhelmed and feel disorganized; overall not a great way to start your week.
- Do not over whelm yourself on Monday. Save the lighter tasks for Monday, for example, everyday routine things that can help you get into the swing of things without leaving you feeling depleted of energy at the beginning of the week. You could also consider scheduling meetings for Tuesdays and later into the week instead of Monday whenever possible. Also try to schedule your week in such a way that you start your week with tasks you enjoy doing or can do with minimal effort. Do not however schedule your week in such a way that you find yourself with too much free time because that will only make you lazy and have you feeling empty and unproductive.
- Start your week with a clear desk. As much as possible, do not keep piled up work from the previous week on your desk. It will be a lot harder to dive right back into work knowing you have a monster pile of tasks to get done. To help with that, do your best to leave as few difficult/ dreadful tasks as possible on Friday evening. By taking care of the unpleasant stuff at the end of the week, you give yourself a better chance of a great start to the next week. If you fail to get everything done by Friday, get it out of the way first thing on Monday morning. Procrastination will only leave you feeling worse. Once you clear up the pile of work that is waiting for you on Monday morning, you will feel a lot better, accomplished and your day will go a lot smoother than if you dilly-dally.
- Focus on positive things and not the negative ones. Make a list (mentally or physically write down) all the things you love about your job and the different things, work related and personal that you are looking forward to in the week. Listen to a podcast, read a devotional during your breaks or whatever it is you draw inspiration and motivation from. Avoid complaining and try not to dwell on the negatives. If you are negative, it will be hard to get through the day and be productive.
- Dress up. That bright scarf or dress in your closet might be just what you need to pull you out of your funk and give you a boost of confidence. Take some time to put on some makeup, smile and put your game face on. When you look good you feel good. Who knows, you might even get a few compliments from your colleagues which is a great confidence booster. Not a bad way to start the week, right?
- Plan fun things for Monday at work , for example you could schedule a lunch date with a friend or colleague from work, take a brief moment to chat with a colleague about the weekend which is great for building interoffice relationships or you could bring something to the office to share with your colleagues ( coffee anyone?)
- Plan a fun post work activity to look forward to and motivate you to get through the day, for example, drinks with friends, a date night with your partner, a glass of wine on your couch, or just catch up on your favorite TV show. Whatever it is, just make sure it’s something that will make you see Mondays in a less negative light, and perhaps have you look forward to them instead.
On a side note, if you are consistently suffering from the Monday blues, it might be worthwhile to consider if you feel satisfied at your job, if there is a particular task you hate doing? Do you feel under- appreciated at work? Is there a Monday morning meeting with your boss that you dread? Are you dealing with a co-worker from hell? Whatever it is, it’s important to sit down and try to understand for yourself what exactly is bothering you and making Mondays or work in general unpleasant for you. If you can figure out what the problem is, you can try to find solutions to the problem and that might just be the key to banishing those Monday blues for good.
I hope these tips become as useful to you as they are to me.
Enjoy your Monday and have a great week!