The Blue Monday Effect

POSTED ON 04/04/2023 IN Therapy Research & Funding

Snoozing your alarm on a Monday morning is common for most of the world. After a weekend of doing whatever you desire or the freedom of sleeping late knowing you have no work-related responsibilities. With the summer season approaching, who wants to spend the day in an office when you could be having a picnic under the sun… at least that’s my thought process. After doing some research I wanted to find out if Monday blues were a myth, is there scientific data to back this?

No matter what the work demand throughout the decades the effect is always talked about and present despite the advancement in technology and knowledge we have today. 


Case studies

In one study it was found that university students showed a large Monday blues effect in comparison to married men who were not students showing smaller Monday blues effects. Furthermore, there is a higher rate of death on Monday for suicides and work accident rates than on any other day of the week. 

Another study conducted wanted to analyse if individuals who went to sleep at their usual time Sunday night also had this effect on Monday. It was found that the shift in circadian rhythm caused by any small change in sleep time Friday-Saturday could delay the sleep onset resulting in a shorter sleep duration. This explains why we may particularly feel extra tired on Mondays however, this topic needs more research and larger samples for the evidence to be viewed as a fact. 


Why might you feel this way?

Who came up with the idea that Mondays are terrible? Is it just a social construct created, that everyone has heard so much that they believe it themselves? It is almost engrained in my brain, Mondays are terrible.  

Thinking in extremes and assuming the worst may cause you to put pressure on Mondays.

You may have a workload of tasks you are dreading, a submission you are not prepared for. Your environment can be the biggest factor in feeling this way. If you find out the root of the problem, it will make you enjoy your days more. It is easier said than done to say find a job you enjoy, but truly imagine waking up and being excited and happy for your Monday morning or journey. Life is so ridiculously short; our fast-ageing process is the only evidence we have of this. You are 20 one day and turning 50 the next. On the weekend you feel free and during the week you feel as though that freedom has been taken away, this emotional shift can be difficult. 

To conclude so far, the ‘Blue Monday effect’ is definitely a real emotion people feel on Mondays, predominantly for people in their teens and ’20s. Despite this, it is not a medical term nor a condition that has a diagnosis and treatment. Those who already deal with depression and anxiety may experience this  more strongly and there can be ways to reduce the feeling.

How can you reduce the Blue Monday effect?

Create a vision for the week with tasks you want to accomplish outside of work. Continue to make time for your hobbies or self-care despite a working day. 

Have something to look forward to. It is important to clear your vision with positive thinking and embrace gratitude.

Most of the blogs and research online all say the same thing however it truly all starts with mindfulness and changing your thinking pattern. To find the root of thoughts or a solution when you feel stuck in life. If that means you need support from a therapist, then that’s a start. 

Monday blues do not need to be a rainy stormy cloud with dulled-out blue in the sky, you can turn it into a sunny sky that is embracing your existence. 

Written by Maryam Fazalzadeha