Feeling down this morning? It's probably because today is Blue Monday - the most depressing day of the year

 
Caitlin Morrison
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People are over-worked, stressed and not sleeping enough - making Blue Monday worse

If you're feeling a bit down in the mouth today, it might not be just the usual Monday blues - it's actually Blue Monday, supposedly the most depressing day of the year.

It's raining, it's cold, it's dark (and getting darker, with the Piccadilly Circus lights going out this morning), and you're probably avoiding checking your bank balance since overspending in the run up to Christmas.

Meanwhile, the pound is plumbing new depths and new research has revealed that more than a third of British workers are unhappy with their jobs.

"Darker days and cold winter weather are a fitting backdrop to the January blues," said Shaun Subel at VitalityHealth.

"Working lives can be extremely demanding, with long hours, lengthy commutes and tight deadlines providing employees with relentless stress. This can hit people especially hard in January following the Christmas break when they have most likely had time away from their workplace."

Sleep it off

Subel warned that returning to a world of constant connectivity to mobile devices is "tough and the lines between work and home are becoming increasingly blurred, meaning we are more stressed than ever", but added that one of the major ways of combatting the blues, in January or at any time of the year, is simply to get more sleep.

"Sleep is a big driver in preventing anxiety and recovering from exercise, and it helps you perform at your best every day," he said. "While it can be difficult, try to switch off your work phone at the end of the day and give yourself time to relax. Not only will you feel less stressed but you’ll beat the January blues.”

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