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Beat the January Blues

We are half way though January and fast approaching Blue Monday.  The third Monday in January is sometimes referred to as ‘the most difficult day of the year’ but this is a myth. We know there’s no such thing as ‘Blue Monday’ – we all have our good days and our bad days, and those aren’t for the calendar to decide.

January can feel to some like the gloomiest month of the year with the partying and excesses of the festive season a distant memory and for many it’s back to work at the same old desk, add to that wind, rain and cold weather, Christmas debts and failed New Year’s resolutions and it’s no surprise some people can find themselves feeling low at this time of year.

Turns out there's a name for that very feeling: Janxiety. (January + Anxiety)

But the good news is you can beat this! firstly, you’re far from alone in your Janxiety, secondly, there are things you can do to help and thirdly…..its not long until February!

Blue Monday Myth

The third Monday of January has been awarded the gloomy title due to a combination of post-Christmas blues, cold dark nights and the arrival of unpaid credit card bills.
Supposedly the date was calculated by using many factors, including: weather conditions, debt level (the difference between debt accumulated and our ability to pay), time since Christmas, time since failing our new year’s resolutions, low motivational levels and feeling of a need to take action.

Failed new year resolutions

We tend to make resolutions because of guilt, and that’s not the best long term motivator.  We also make difficult and vague resolutions, such as “save money”, “be more organised” or “lose weight”.

So its not surprise 80 percent of new year’s resolutions have failed by February.

Next time, If you’re going to make a resolution, make sure it’s one you can manage and measure. Then do it and feel better! (Which will encourage you to do it again.)

Don’t be too hard on yourself, you can make changes anytime of the year.  

Be sociable - Samaritans Brew Monday

In the UK we love a cup of tea. Get together with your friends, family or workmates on Brew Monday, 15 January 2024, have a cuppa, raise vital funds for Samaritans and beat the January blues! ‘Blue Monday’  is known as one of the most difficult days of the year. 

For more information

A good strong cup of tea is important to TV and radio broadcaster Yasmin Evans. “I’m a Northerner and we drink a lot of tea. If you don’t have teabags in your kitchen, there’s something wrong with you.


“Having a cup of tea, and sitting across the table from someone, you just put all your walls down and get a little bit comfortable, you have a conversation and a chat,” says Yasmin. What is comforting is, you know that the conversation is going to last as long as that little mug, so there’s no pressure. You don’t have to stay longer than the brew.

Volunteer or do something new

Lots of us resolve to try new things at the start of a new year. Why not try volunteering? We know you’ll love it!

Volunteering is a great way to meet like-minded, welcoming people and make great new friends. You can dedicate as much or as little time to volunteering as you like. Even if you can only spare an hour a week, that can make a huge difference. There are so many different volunteering opportunities available you’re certain to find somewhere you can share your knowledge and expertise

For more information

Research has shown that people who volunteer are healthier, happier and feel more fulfilled than people who don’t. Knowing you’re doing something to help others can give you an enormous sense of personal achievement and wellbeing. 

Exercise Join RED January

R.E.D JANUARY is a movement helping to raise awareness and support for mental health, through the power of exercise. In partnership with the charity Mind it also encourages people to raise money for the charity as well as raising the awareness of mental health issues and promote the positive impact that exercise can have on wellbeing. 

The emphasis is on any exercise and to celebrate every achievement, no matter how large or small. RED January can provide you with a goal and a focus in a characteristically tough month, empowering you to start the year as you mean to go on. To find out more

Get some light

If the winter blues is about lack of daylight, it’s no surprise that treatment usually involves getting more light into your life.  If you feel low in winter, get outside as often as you can (walking or running would be great), especially on bright days. Sitting by a window can also help.
Light therapy is another idea. This involves sitting in front of or beneath a light box that produces a very bright light.


Don't forget you are not alone

Lots of your friends, relatives and colleagues will be going through the same or similar feelings as you in January. Find someone to talk to, a relative or team up with a friend to support each other. We’re all in this together and there are people out there who want to help you.

If you feel you need more support visit your GP or contact the Samaritans who will be able to help.