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The ”Sunday Scaries” can be defined as a feeling of anxiety or depression that washes over you–typically in the later hours of the second half of the weekend.
The word ”Monday” may prompt feelings of doubt or frustration. The thought of dealing with a plate full of new responsibilities and, let’s face it, roadblocks, is sometimes our worst enemy because we view it as absolutely daunting.
I suffer from this myself. I have a lot of projects I’m working on during the week, which quite often lead into Saturday as well. How does one stop? When does this complexity end? For most of us, it doesn’t. But there are ways to change your perspective on the week ahead and avoid the Sunday scaries.
Stop viewing Monday as ”mourner’s day”
I think the media is primarily responsible for planting this ideology in our minds. It’s been noted in films. It’s been romanticized by writers. Businessmen dread it. Newscasters cry for it.
Monday, they say, is the day (most) of us slug around with half a cup of coffee or tea in our dominant hand all while our top halves make a comedic attempt at vocalizing our displeasure. ”Another day!” sighs a bakery owner with a half smirk. ”Let’s get ready to rock and roll,” jests a journalist. ”Monday is that person who will shove a boot up a person’s a** and have the audacity to encourage them to keep walking,” suggests a comedian.
Why do we do this?
As I would like to think, we view Mondays as displeasing because, let’s face it, who wants the weekend to end? Monday is like a cup of cold water splashing on the face, waking you up during the R.E.M. stage of your sleep cycle. Monday is the sound of an alarm, buzzing like a thousand buzzards perched a few feet above your head.
Although there isn’t an effective way to relieve such engrained philosophies, this can change if you train (not tell) yourself to believe that the challenges within a new week are ”NECESSARY for YOUR progression.”
Another set of positive affirmations might include ”I am not who I was LAST week,” ”Change requires grit,” or even ”Mondays are just Fridays wrapped in layers of gift wrap. In order to reach the (gift) inside I have to figure out the exterior.”
Treat hurdles as your best friend, not enemy
Think about it. How did someone like Carla Hall or the late Steve Jobs get to where they are today, being iconic figures of strength and influence? Better yet, how did they get to a point where their setbacks became the thing that pushed them forward?
The answer is that they did not jump directly over the hurdle (this meaning that they avoided failure all together) but chose to extract the lessons within their experience.
From there, you should practice applying this knowledge to future scenarios.
Accept the fact that success does not come without sacrifice, struggle, and self-doubt
Quite often we see these images of successful people or celebrities and miss out on the bigger picture. By this, I mean that we often see the result of hustling, long nights, breakdowns, and doubt because we are presented with the polished surface.
Although the media (and social media) as a whole has become more ”transparent” with the dark and gritty of our lives, revealing both the good and bad, this does not excuse the fact that the illusion of successful people always succeeding in their endeavors is still relevant and very real—despite mostly being imaginary.
That is why I am asking you to check in with yourself at least twice a week. This doesn’t have to be performed verbally or in front of other people. This can actually be done anywhere.
The shower, your bed . . . you name it. Once you are situated, take a few minutes to absorb the energy in your environment before diving in. From there, ask yourself these three questions: ”How am I doing?” ”What am I doing?” and ”What am I moving towards?”
Confused? These questions are meant to acknowledge your state of being, state of notion, and reason for acting.
Remember: the difference between notion and success is the act of actually working towards it. So if you’re able to answer honestly and confidently to these questions, you can feel assured that your goals are on their way to becoming a reality. If still in doubt, ask yourself a fourth question ”Who am I doing all this for?”
If your answer is someone other than yourself, you must consider re-evaluating your mission in life because, yes, we all have a purpose. And if you currently believe that your purpose is to satisfy the aspirations or expectations of someone else, how can you possibly wake up each week feeling truly accomplished?
Find activities to do throughout the week that releases you from the idea of work or school
It’s undeniable that when you have important meetings to attend throughout the week or have to meet financial deadlines, it can be hard to attend to yourself. Yes, paying your bills and making sure your manuscript is sent out to a publisher by first thing Tuesday morning is important, but when your life becomes your job you will eventually feel disconnected with humanity. I learned this the hard way!
…And that’s why I highly suggest finding an activity to do every other day after work. In my opinion, this should be an easy outdoor activity like walking, biking, or even drinking coffee at a local cafe. When you disconnect from your responsibilities and connect with yourself, you naturally feel less stressed, more aware and have something exciting to look forward to every week.
Learn to embrace change
This is self-explanatory. Change is naturally a scary thing because we can’t see the outcome, the end of the road. Where will we be? Will it be safe? Will I continue facing ”bad breaks” forever?
In short, no. In fact, rocky situations are only rocky if we choose to view them as a bother and not a learning opportunity. That’s why it’s important to approach complicated situations at work and home-life with the mindset of taking something away.
Remember, in the end, there is no perfect way to live life because life is not perfect itself. So go out there this Monday and conquer.
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Reclaim your Mondays, reclaim your week, reclaim your life!