Blue Monday is a myth.
Orginally, it was a publicity stunt to sell holidays. Based on things like:
- Post-Christmas debt
- Going back to work,
- Short dark days
- Poor weather
- Disappointment of not sticking to New Year’s resolutions.
- And just a general feeling of doom and gloom.
It has also become an opportunity to promote things that will improve your overall health and wellbeing, often with no research or evidence to back up these claims and people using it as an opportunity for financial gain.
With mental health comes 'good and bad' days and they will be individual to each of us. Each person’s circumstances are different also, so there is no point trying to identify what the most depressing day of the year is.
There can be seasonal variations in our mental health and how we are feeling. Some people may experience:
Symptoms of depression can be associated with this, which can come and go in a seasonal pattern. SAD is more common and intense during the winter months where we have less daylight. Changes in winter can impact our sleeping and eating habits, as well as affect our mood. This can be due to bodily changes which can also affect our hormones.
There are things we know we can do to improve our mental health, such as exercising, eating well, getting enough sleep, spending time outside or seeing family and friends, doing these things can feel more challenging and harder to do when the days are short, and the nights are longer.
Maybe the true meaning of Blue Monday is that we should be thinking about our mental health every day of the year to try and protect it.
Mental health problems generally last for more than a day and can affect people in many different ways on any day of the year.