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Do we really need Blue Monday this year?

Do we really need a Blue Monday this year? 

Each year a rather complicated equation is used to confirm which day in January has been recognised as officially the most depressing of the year – everybody, meet Blue Monday! 

The equation takes account of the terrible January weather, our mounting debt levels, dwindling monthly salary, the time since Christmas, the time since failing in our New Year resolutions, and our low motivational levels. 

After a particularly challenging 10 months, you could be forgiven for thinking it would be too difficult to pick only one day! 

Nonetheless, the fateful day has been identified and this year the designated most depressing day is 18th January. How will you spend the day? Do you see it as free rein to wallow in misery for one day, or do you see it as a challenge and plan on making it the best day possible? 

It is, of course, a gift to marketers and advertisers who see it as a great opportunity to bombard us with cleverly targeted adverts – from gorgeous beaches bathed in sunshine tempting us to book our summer holidays to mouth-watering foodie treats and rejuvenating beauty treatments. 

But is spending our money really the best way to cheer ourselves up? Probably not! 

Furthermore, this year especially, people are experiencing genuine mental health difficulties and it seems inappropriate to make light of what for some, is a serious illness, with something that often feels like a PR stunt. 

Perhaps we can shift the focus a bit and see Blue Monday in the same way as Mental Health Day – a time to shine a light on mental health issues. A day to acknowledge that we all need to safeguard our mental health not just on one day of the year, but all-year-round. A day to be positive about the year ahead and share our experiences and our techniques for coping with stress, anxiety, and depression. 

If you’re a student here at MidKent College, you can access loads of really helpful information to support you if your Blue Monday goes beyond feeling a bit down in the dumps. Just log into your Moodle account and head to the Student Support tab where you will find resources covering specific mental health difficulties. The LRC section is also very useful – head there to explore their Mental Health and Wellbeing e-bookshelf.   

Should you need further support or wish to discuss anything further please remember that we are still here to help - contact your Progress & Performance Tutor, our Welfare Officers, or CBT & Counselling therapists. 

There are also several mental health charities where you can find further support: 

Young Minds 

Samaritans 

Mind

Some quick tips on how to help improve your mental health if you'e feeling low:

  • Exercise (within the rules of the current lockdown)
  • Eat healthily
  • Get more sleep
  • Take a break from social media
  • Talk - keep the communication channels open with family and friends.

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