Blue Monday-here's how to banish the January blues

Blue Monday-here's how to banish the January blues
Credit: Klaus Nielsen Pexels

Today is "Blue Monday," allegedly the most depressing day of the year.

While the term "Blue Monday" actually comes from a PR stunt, rather than real science, January is still a tough month for our mood. As such we have the following tips to get you through the dark days ahead.

1.Have the LOLs

Laughter really is good medicine. A study from the American Journal of Medical Science showed that laughter actually reduces levels of the stress hormone, cortisol. So call up your pal and have a belly laugh over the time they made a tit of themselves.


2. Have some "Netflix and Chill"

There's a reason more babies are conceived in the winter months. A great way to combat the dark cold days of January is to have some hot bedroom fun. Sex helps with your mood by releasing endorphins. A study has found that sex has a particular power to reduce stress, as it will prevent an increase in blood pressure during stressful events. So, if you've got a lot on your plate this month, squeeze in some sexy time to stop it from getting the better of you.

3. Say Thank You

It's been proven that expressing gratitude can make you happier. Try writing out one thing you're grateful for every day this month. By the end of the month, you should feel noticeably more optimistic.


4. Pay it forward

It's nice when someone shows us kindness, but did you know it's also helpful for us to show kindness to others? Acts of kindness actually increase levels of serotonin in the brain, and give us a "helper's high." Send someone a message telling them how much you love them. Make your colleague a cup of tea. Small acts of kindness like these can actually help you to cope with low mood.

5. Give us your best Britney

Have you ever felt on top of the world after belting it out in the shower? Singing has been shown to improve mood and well-being. It doesn't matter if you sound more like Phoebe Buffay than Phoebe Bridgers, singing, by yourself or with a group, will lift your spirits.


6. Move it Move it

Needless to say, exercise is a powerful mood booster. If you don't enjoy the gym, try to find a form of movement that you actually enjoy, like dancing, rollerskating, hula hooping, or trampolining. If you find you don't have time to exercise, you can try "vigorous intermittent lifestyle physical activity (VILPA). This basically means trying to incorporate a burst of rapid activity in your day-e.g. try to dress the bed in record time, race someone up the stairs, play chase with your children.

7. Go to the seaside.

In the South East, you're never too far from a beach. The iodine and magnesium in sea air can actually boost your immune system, and the closeness to nature can often help the mood. If the beach is too far, you can visit a lake, waterfall or stream too, as all sources of water have been found to have a psychologically restorative effect.


One of the most effective ways to combat stress in the body is through breathwork. Try breathing in for four seconds, hold for one second, and then breathe out for five seconds. Deep breathing engages the parasympathetic nervous system, bringing the body out of "fight of flight" mode and into a state of calm.