Blue Monday – the most depressing day of the year?


Category: Blog

Blue Monday and Mental Health

Blue Monday – the 3rd Monday of January is thought to be the most depressing day of the year.

The reasoning behind this is said to be due to the expense following Christmas as we are all a little light on the pennies, the weather is not great with dark mornings and nights and there always seems to be pressure and hype around New Year resolutions.

But whether you believe Blue Monday is real or not, (I personally don’t – am I allowed to say that?) we can be affected with mental health issues during the month of January. Depressing or sad days can happen at any-time of the month and feeling down differs for all of us and varies depending on our individual circumstances, something which we can all relate to from time to time.

As a Mental Health First Aider and someone who battles with depression myself, I find the following tips help for getting through these kind of days:


Playing music lifts the soul. It can help reduce anxiety, be calming and help with depression. So put on some golden oldies, happy upbeat tunes and sing along, whether you are working from home or just driving in the car. Or if you are in need of relaxation, play some calming music to relax the mind.

Phone a Friend

It really is good to talk. Ring that friend who you know will talk your ears off and put the world to rights and have a good old natter and a laugh. Or if you are in the office, engage in conversation – ask someone how they are, how their day is going and get talking. Even better arrange to meet that friend and take a walk in the park, which brings me nicely onto the below….

Get Moving

Get outside in the fresh air. Go for a brisk walk at lunchtime and get the heart pumping. It doesn’t have to be long, just 15/20 minutes, and it will make you feel energised. Meet a friend, grab a coffee and take the dog or just yourself for a walk in the park. Exercise is a powerful medicine and can have a really positive effect on our mental health.

Take on a Challenge

There are always some kind of charity events that we can get involved in such as Dry January – giving up alcohol after the excesses over Christmas or Move for Mind which is a 30-day challenge to exercise through dance, skipping, swimming, walking. Alternatively, if you are a St. Modwen employee, why not get involved in a Volunteering Day. We have 2 days we can use each year. Engaging in one of these events can help us feel positive and focused.

And think about Blue Monday as the middle of a working week. We are already halfway through the month of January so not long till payday!! A bit of reverse psychology always works a treat.

Debbie Bartlett, Mental Health First Aider

Blue Monday wellbeing top tips