Today Is The Most Depressing Day Of The Year (But Here Is How You Make It Better) 6 years ago

Today Is The Most Depressing Day Of The Year (But Here Is How You Make It Better)

If you are feeling a little blah today, rest assure you are not alone.

The third Monday of January has been dubbed the most “depressing day of the year” and earned itself the somewhat somber moniker "Blue Monday".

I mean, I know January isn't exactly the funnest month, let's be honest, between the weather and the New Year's diet and the depressing state of our bank accounts after the festive splurge, but what is it about this day that makes it the absolute worst?

It seems the answer is that Blue Monday is nothing but a cold and calculated little PR stunt, thought up by travel agents Sky Travel to flog last minute holidays to the depressed and frozen masses.

According to mental health organisation Beat Blue Monday, there is some pseudoscience available to back up the idea of Blue Monday, as the date can,  in fact, be calculated using several factors like debt level, pay time since Christmas and the abandon of new year's resolution.  It is broken down as follows: W = weather, D = debt, d = monthly salary, M = low motivational levels, Na = the feeling of a need to take action. The formula is {[W + (D-d)] x T^Q} ÷ [M x N_a].

Riiight.

The thing is, though, guys, we are in fact in control of our own happiness, meaning you hold the power to make this Monday anything but blue if you want to. Our minds are funny like that, if you choose to believe that today will be grim and depressing, that is what you’ll look out for, so that’s what you’ll find. Alternatively, you can choose to believe it will be a nice day, in which case you’ll more likely to notice the high points.

So if you want to go out and grab this Monday with both hands (and you should), here are five tips guaranteed to up your happiness factor:

1. Get some light

Natural light helps stabilise serotonin and triggers endorphin, both mood-boosting hormones, so try to get outside for at least ten minutes today.

2. Work out

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Any steady movement you enjoy—walking, jogging, swimming, cycling—boosts endorphins, and will leave you feeling calmer and happier.

3. Put on your happy face

When you smile, you release a cascade of feel-good chemicals in your brain. Your body relaxes, and blood pressure may be lowered. Smiling is contagious, too, so if you smile at others you’ll help them feel better as well.

4. Be thankful

Make a list of things you’re grateful for, and people you’re grateful you know. Recent research has shown that when you take time to appreciate what you already have, you’ll feel more energetic and optimistic.

5. Practice altruism

There’s a growing body of research that links altruistic behaviour with improved health and a greater sense of wellbeing. Offer someone a genuine compliment, and/or make a contribution to a charity.

What do YOU think, guys? Anyone feeling particularly blue today? Join in the conversation with us on Twitter at @Herfamilydotie