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Blue Monday: An opportunity to reflect and recharge

15 January 2024

4 mins

Illustration of a hand holding a magnifying glass in blue woodland, through the magnifying glass is flowers lit up by a yellow spotlight.

January 15 marks Blue Monday – the name given to a day in January, that is supposedly the saddest day of the year due to a combination of post-festive bills, little sunlight, cold weather and the abandonment of New Year resolutions.

This time of year can bring a sense of melancholy, but let’s approach it not as a hurdle to overcome but as an opportunity to reflect and recharge.

Embrace self-care

On a day that might feel a bit heavier than usual, prioritise self-care. Take a break, indulge in activities that bring you joy, and recharge your mental and emotional batteries. Whether it’s a warm bath, a good book, or your favourite film, make time for something that makes you feel good.

You can find useful self-care tips in our Stress Awareness blog.

Connect with others

Share how you’re feeling with friends, family, or colleagues. You’d be surprised to find that others may be experiencing similar emotions. Connecting with others not only provides support but also creates a sense of community, reminding us that we’re not alone.

Find out more about the benefits of connecting with others in our blog ‘5 Ways to Wellbeing: Connect’.

Set realistic goals

Instead of overwhelming yourself with unrealistic expectations, set small, achievable goals for the day. Completing these tasks provides a sense of accomplishment and helps to counteract the Monday blues.

Take Blue Monday as a chance to reflect on the first few weeks of the year and how new resolutions have gone. Dr Ian Taylor, a psychologist at Loughborough University, explained how those who use Blue Monday as a time to reflect on resolutions are actually much more likely to stick to them.

Mindful moments

Incorporate mindfulness into your day. Take a few moments to breathe deeply, appreciate the present, and let go of any negativity. Mindfulness can be a powerful tool in navigating through challenging emotions, helping to cultivate a more positive outlook.

Have a go at these online LU Arts mindfulness workshops with Loughborough University Fine Art graduate Grace Stones.

You can also download a printable version of the LU Arts Mindfulness Colouring Book.

Looking ahead

Blue Monday is just one day on the calendar. Take a moment to reflect on the bigger picture and the opportunities that lie ahead. By focusing on the future and setting positive intentions, we can turn this day into a stepping stone toward a brighter and more optimistic week.


If you are struggling for any reason, there are services and resources we encourage staff to use if they need any wellbeing support:

  • Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) – a confidential, unlimited support service for any matter that might be of concern to you which is available to access 24/7 via web and telephone. Health Assured have widened their provision to include access to computerised CBT interventions, to access this please call Health Assured on 0800 028 0199.
  • Maximus – confidential external support through the Access to Work Mental Health Support Service.
  • My Healthy Advantage app – complementing the EAP, this app provides an enhanced set of wellbeing tools and engaging features to help the user’s mental and physical health. 
  • Togetherall – designed to help people get support to take control of their wellbeing and feel better. It provides 24/7 peer-to-peer and professional support (from experienced clinicians who are always online), plus a range of courses and tools to help people self-manage their wellbeing. 
  • The Yellow Book – an online resource with various tools and techniques to help combat stress in written and audio format. The e-book features poems, songs, readings and artwork to help with your mental wellbeing (please note that sign-in is required). 
  • The University Chaplaincy (Email:, Tel: 01509 223741) offers a space for quiet reflection. University Chaplains are here to listen, here to care and here to help all staff and students. No appointment is necessary.   
  • Mental Health First Aiders – these staff members are trained to listen, reassure and respond, even in a crisis – and can potentially avert a crisis from happening. They can do this by recognising warning signs, and they have the skills and confidence to approach and support someone experiencing poor mental health. 
Health and Wellbeing

Wellbeing means being in a positive physical, social and mental state. Wellbeing is important to us as happy, healthy people who achieve harmony in their work / life mix are more creative, productive and help to create a great place to work.

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