Our top tips to beat ‘Blue Monday’ and the January blues

It’s Blue Monday, which is, statistically, the saddest day of the year. It’s cold, it’s dark for most of the day, and the magic of Christmas has started to fizzle. That being said, there are lots of ways to keep yourself positive and motivated throughout this time, and to beat those Blue Monday, and lockdown, blues! We’ve put together a few of our top tips below:

 

Tip 1 – Try and keep structure and a routine by planning ahead.

Although there are very few things we are allowed to do at the moment, finding what you can do, and planning out in advance, really helps you to have something to look forward to, whether it be a date night at home or a virtual quiz with your friends.

 

Tip 2 – Drink more water.

It’s advice we hear time and time again, but something that most of us, hand on heart, can say we probably don’t follow enough. Dehydration is known to have a significant negative impact on energy levels and our overall mood. According to NHS guidance, we should all be drinking at least six to eight glasses of water a day, which equates to around 1.4 litres. Set yourself a goal and try to drink the recommend amount for a week to see how much it improves your mood and makes you feel so much better.

 

Tip 3 – Remind yourself what you are thankful for.

Sometimes it can be very easy to focus on the negative things that are out of our control right now. So it’s always a good idea to sit down and make a note, whether that be physically or just in your mind, of all the things you are thankful for and to take time to focus on a little positivity. Doing this will boost your mood and, hopefully, banish the negative thoughts from your mind, even if just for a while.

 

Tip 4 – Get outdoors*.

Fresh air and a bit of winter sun work wonders, not just for our physical health, but our mental health too. If you have a garden, take full advantage of it; you could use it as an area for an outdoor workout in the day, then create a cosy space with blankets, festoons and a log burner for toasting marshmallows on these cold winter nights. Make sure to refer back to tip no.1 and make plans that involve your daily exercise and getting outdoors, so you have something to plan and look forward to; whether it be a socially distanced walk in the park with a friend, or a gym session in your garden with members of your household.

*Local area lockdown restrictions permitting. At the date of posting, 18/01/2021, we are currently in a nationwide lockdown in the UK and the rules state: You are limited to leaving your home once per day for exercise in a public outdoor place, with one other person from another household, or with your support bubble (if you are legally entitled to form one). This includes, but is not limited to, running, cycling, walking, and swimming. Personal training can continue one-on-one.

 

Tip 5 – Take one step at a time.

Finally, it’s really important to take each day/week/month as it comes. We can all agree that 2020 was a very strange and difficult year. There will definitely be many of you who have achieved great things in 2020, accomplished your dreams and been able to celebrate 2020, but for a lot of people, just getting through 2020 was a huge achievement. It’s important not to be too hard on ourselves and to tackle each and every day, and the unprecedented challenges that the lockdown brings, one step at a time.