Published on: 18 January 2018
As the Christmas and New Year memories fade, and we put the celebrations, family time, parties and overindulgence behind us, we are often left with post-holiday season blues.
These factors come together for a single day believed to be the most depressing of the year, which has been dubbed 'Blue Monday'.
What can you do about Blue Monday?
Exercise, starting an activity you've wanted to do for ages and enjoying time with friends and family all help to banish the winter blues. On the day itself you may want to do something to take your mind off it, even if it's something as simple as a phone call to a friend or you could take some inspiration from the 5 Ways to Wellbeing:
Connect – connect with the people around you: your family, friends, colleagues and neighbours. Spend time developing these relationships.
Be active – you don't have to go to the gym. Take a walk, go cycling or play a game of football. Find an activity that you enjoy and make it a part of your life.
Keep learning – learning new skills can give you a sense of achievement and a new confidence. So why not sign up for that cooking course, start learning to play a musical instrument, or figure out how to fix your bike?
Give to others – even the smallest act can count whether it's a smile, a thank you or a kind word. Larger acts, such as volunteering at your local community center, can improve your mental wellbeing and help you build new social networks.
Be mindful – be more aware of the present moment, including your thoughts and feelings, your body and the world around you. Some people call this awareness "mindfulness". It can positively change the way you feel about life and how you approach challenges.
However, if you are struggling with feelings of depression over a long period you should speak to your doctor, contact the NHS on 111, or talk to a trusted family member or friend.
You can also contact:
Samaritans on Freephone 116 123 or visit www.samaritans.org
HOPELineUK on 0800 068 4141 or visit www.papyrus-uk.org