Wellbeing

5 tips to help brighten your mood this ‘Blue Monday’

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‘Blue Monday’ (also known as the second or third Monday in the month of January) is considered a time of year where we might feel more down than usual.

It’s important to Take Notice of how you’re feeling around winter as darker nights, the anti-climax after the festive/holiday period and unachieved New Year’s Resolutions can make it easy for the days to merge into one and to get caught up in a negative cycle. Add to this the pressure of upcoming exams and assessments and for many it can be a tough time of year.

To help brighten your mood this ‘Blue Monday’ week have a look at the following suggestions from the University’s Wellbeing team:

  1. Try not to put too much pressure on keeping new year’s resolutions: small steps are great and setbacks are normal when beginning to achieve your goals. If you can, frequently reward yourself as studies show this will make you more likely to achieve them. Read Malaika’s tips for creating SMART resolutions to help make your goals feel more manageable as part of your day-to-day routine.
  2. Plan some fun activities to look forward to this month with friends and family. Being with loved ones creates a powerful combination of oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin – all of which are feel good brain chemicals. This is even more crucial during the assessment period as taking care of your wellbeing should be just as much a priority as revision. Remember to take regular breaks and meet up with friends (to revise or socialise).
  3. Introduce more light to your daily routine by moving your desk to your window, or going for a walk on your lunch break. Daylight increases serotonin and produces Vitamin D, helping to boost your mood and maintain good physical health.
  4. Although the winter season is a period that can cause low moods, it might be comforting to know that the theory of ‘Blue January’ as a universal low mood month in itself is not yet based in factual evidence. If you can, try and treat the month like any other, but still remember to Take Notice of how you’re feeling.
  5. Please reach out for extra support if you feel you need it. The Student Support website is a good place to start.

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