Ask just about any school-aged child, college student, or adult what their least favorite part of the week is and you’ll likely hear some grumblings about Sunday.
You worked so hard all week for a weekend of sleeping in, relaxation, fun, and basically having more control over your life. Sunday morning may be fun with sleeping in, brunch, and then maybe a few games to watch later in the day, but as the clock ticks on and the day begin to end, something creeps in.
Maybe you start feeling a little anxious come Sunday afternoon. Maybe you’re starting to procrastinate a bit as you think about it…Monday. Yes, back to early alarms, class, work, training, and practices. These my friend are the Sunday scaries.
The Sunday scaries is the transition from play mode to work mode.
“The Sunday scaries are feelings of intense anxiety and dread that routinely occur every Sunday. They often start in the late afternoon and continue into the evening. However, depending on a person’s level of anxiety, these feelings can start as soon as they get out of bed,” says Dr. Susan Albers, a psychologist at the Cleveland Clinic.
Many of us dread the end of the weekend. It means a return to the grind and following along with a grueling schedule. For some, the anticipation of the week ahead can become more intense. Anxiety over the start of the week can bring about an upset stomach, headaches, and even trouble getting a good night’s rest on Sunday evening.
Dr. Susan Albers with the Cleveland Clinic offers some tips and suggestions to help take the edge off of the Sunday Scaries and get you in a better frame of mind for class, practice, and games.
- Change your mindset. Don’t focus on the negative. We often spend a lot of time worrying about the worst that could happen, when likely that will never be the case. Instead of thinking “I hate having math first period,” think about the friend you may see in the morning during the class and how they may be able to help you with an assignment or trouble area.
- Create a Sunday night routine. Something is calming about having a routine. You want to be organized and focused as you wind down from the weekend and prepare your Monday game face. Have a set time to eat with the family. Pack your lunch and bag. Take a nice long shower. And maybe enjoy a movie every Sunday night with family before bed.
- Treat yourself on Monday morning. Maybe it’s stopping by your favorite coffee shop on the way to class. Pick up some donuts to share with friends or classmates. Set your intentions off with something good.
- Sleep. Chances are the weekends are anything but normal when it comes to sleeping. You’ll likely be out late on a Friday or Saturday night at a game, or adventuring with friends. And there’s a chance there’s no morning alarm clock. So on Sunday night, get to bed on time, or maybe a bit early.
- Have a Sunday plan ready to go. Create some routine of rest or activities you enjoy. Maybe that’s brunch with friends. Have a nice long workout. Listening to your favorite music or podcast while meal prepping for the week. Keep yourself busy and the mind engaged in doing something you enjoy.
- Exercise. Go for a walk or jog. Hit the weights. Take a Sunday morning fitness class with friends. Movement is a great way to keep anxiety at bay and is a natural antidepressant. Release those endorphins in your brain.
- Create a to-do list for Monday. Map out your plan of attack for Monday. Write down all of the tasks that need to be done (and don’t forget to include your morning treat). This can help organize your thoughts before bed on Sunday so your mind won’t wander as it tries to figure out everything that needs to be accomplished.
Another way to face your Sunday Scaries is to sit and think about it. Or talk it out with a friend over brunch or your Sunday workout. You may feel anxiety, but do you really know why? Try and figure out what is the trigger or two that brings you to dread come Monday. It is because you have to pass by the bully on your way to your locker? Does your day start with a difficult class? Sometimes by actually identifying your fear, it can help. And in doing so, you can figure out ways to address that fear.
The reality is Monday will always come. It means the start of a fresh week of school, and the fresh start of the workweek in the not too distant future. Monday is a part of our modern society, but if you can create a routine to enjoy your Sunday, prepare for the week ahead, and get some rest, Sundays may become, well not so scary.