Blue Monday

Today is Blue Monday, appaerently the most depressing day of the year for countries in the northern hemisphere. A quick google search tells me it was an expression coined by a travel company to try and work out statistically when people would be most likely to buy a holiday, and it’s been decided that today is Blue Monday because of a calculation based on time since Christmas, money, motivation from having failed at resolutions, the weather and the fact that it feels a long time til the next holiday.

Most people will feel a bit flat around this time of year. Social lives are a bit slow after the rush of Christmas, money has run out, the gym or diet isn’t a novelty anymore and it’s raining. Easy to see why it’s called Blue Monday, even if it is made up.

My Blue Monday feels the same as any other Monday. I didn’t leave the house, I’m unemployed so I have no money, my physio and diet have been constantly in place for the past however long so I was bored of that ages ago and it’s raining. So you could say I’m lucky to have been spared the dip that comes with Blue Monday.

Or you could look at it a different way: when you’re chronically ill, you feel that flat feeling of Blue Monday that most people are experiencing just for today or this week, but every day. It’s really hard to motivate yourself to get up, get dressed and find something to do in the hours of free time you have isolated by yourself. Some people might be making plans for later on in the year as a way to compensate for the empty feeling they have today, but it’s hard to make long term plans when you’re permanently ill. And have no money. I bet a lot of people are flicking through their diaries looking for social engagements to look forward to, to give them a bit of a boost. The only things I have in my calendar this year so far are medical appointments. It’s also incredibly difficult to make spontaneous plans when you’re ill, which means if it’s not planned in advance, it’s probably not happening. So Blue Monday might be a bit blue for normal people but it’s especially blue for people who are isolated because of illness. 

Last week’s achievements include watching 4 seasons on Netflix. I think that’s a record even for me! If you’re chronically ill and got up and got dressed today, even if you went back to bed later on in the day, well done and have a gold star. And hopefully non-chronically ill people will be able to empathise with the feeling of lacking motivation for life a bit easier 🙂 

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