Sunday night blues. “Sunday scaries.” These are just different names for that feeling of dread that many people experience on Sunday afternoons as the prospect of the work week looms.
Although “Sunday scaries” is not a scientific phenomenon, many people experience anxiety that builds up over the course of Sunday afternoon and evening. In a Monster.com poll, 78% of respondents reported feeling Sunday night blues. Almost 60% of these respondents (from the US) said they experience it “really bad.”
“You wouldn’t have a problem with Mondays if you love what you do.” That might not be necessarily true. In theory, the 60 hours between 8 pm on Friday evening and 8 am on Monday morning are a blissful reprieve from the stress of the work week. But even if you manage to leave work at work, the reality is that Sundays are often dominated by anxiety that the work week is about to begin all over again.
Personally, I love my job and love going to work every day but when the realization kicks in that the weekend fun is coming to an end, my Sunday gets derailed.
How to Beat the Sunday Night Blues
Sunday night blues is a real thing for a lot of people. But instead of letting this ruin your “fun” weekend, here are strategies to practice throughout the week to fend off the blues.
Identify the Triggers
Maybe it’s your boss? Or you don’t like your job? Are you concerned about a certain problem at work? Is there an unresolved conflict? Are you overwhelmed by the workload? Do you just need some time off work? Putting pen to paper to identify the source of your Sunday blues is a first step in managing your anxiety. I’ve heard people say that they are anxious on Sundays, but “don’t know exactly why.” If “Sunday scaries” sets in on a weekly basis, carve out time to analyze the cause. It may be deeply rooted or it may be something as simple as needing change within your office setting.
Connect with a professional therapist online.
Set and Keep to Work Schedules/Deadlines
Writing to-do lists and assigning yourself deadlines will help make work more manageable. Try to stick to your schedule as closely as possible, but also make it flexible enough for changes. Start out with the important goals first; if there is something you did not accomplish this week, revise your to-do list and map out how you will get it done in the week to come.
Make Friday Afternoon Your New Monday Morning
Getting everything done on Friday makes the weekend more enjoyable. You can even spend Friday afternoon preparing for Monday morning. When you preemptively take care of those annoying work tasks for the week to come, you can enter the weekend without being weighed down by the stress of those tasks.
Talk to Someone
Sometimes the anxiety gets unbearable. If you are having a hard time coping with your daily life and schedule, it is a good idea to seek the help of a mental health professional.
Remember that Monday is not a bad day. It’s just been given a bad rep. You’ve got this!