Rx For The Sunday Blues

I don't know about you, but I still sometimes get them--those Sunday night blues. They started in junior high, got worse in high school, and progressed until I could hardly stand it in college. That anxious feeling of anticipating the week ahead somehow never left.

I find we make efforts to distract ourselves on Sunday night -- the end of the end of our 48 hour leave -- having late dinners or parties, going to the movies, watching all the great Sunday night television --anything to avoid the feeling of facing Monday morning. Maybe that's the problem - seeing it as the end of a mini-vacation. Two days off from five days of work: A bad bargain from anybody's point of view.

OK, maybe that's it. Monday means waking up knowing that you are forced back into what you left off on Friday. Same old routine. Only in fairytales did those little elves finish up what was left undone.

The antidotes?

Reframe it: Take it head-on and be in the moment, rather than dwelling on the week to come. Allow yourself to enjoy those parties and movies. Be mindful.

Use it: Own your Sunday night blues party. Invite your friends over to complain for 10 minutes apiece about the days to come. By the fourth 10 minutes, you'll start laughing. Seeing absurdity face-to-face may cure the ill.

Diagnose it: Focus on the complaint. Address the source of your Sunday dread and do the work that healing requires. There are two kinds of medicine: One is for immediate symptom relief; the other is strategy-making to remedy the bad situation. It's like the pill vs. the regimen for both short and long-term approaches.

Some strategies: If the problem is a bad boss, what else can you add or do that would make it better? Then ask yourself what other boss or job you'd really prefer to start moving toward that goal. If you want to advance within your company, see if you can help solve the existing dilemmas within your organization-- even voluntarily if not asked-- which might just catapult you up

Or, beat the blues by having something to look forward to during the week-- even if it's something small, like setting up a weekly lunch friends, or visit an art gallery on Wednesday or take an improv class on Thursday night. Don't reserve all of your opportunities for excitement or relaxation for the weekend.

If we improve the quality of our five days, we might just celebrate Sunday night.

Make your luck happen!