Once Sunday evening rolls around, do you start feeling anxious and stressed about the upcoming week? That dreaded feeling is known as the Sunday Blues or the “Sunday Scaries,” and a LinkedIn survey from last year finds that 66% of the 3-thousand professionals polled report feeling them.
To avoid feeling down at the end of the weekend, people may put off thinking about work for as long as possible, but that’s not helping the problem. Productivity expert Chris Bailey explains, “Procrastination can just create more unnecessary stress.” While there’s no magic fix for the Sunday Scaries, he recommends these strategies to help deal with them.
- Set goals for the week - The first step to beating the Sunday Scaries is making a plan for the week ahead because Bailey says for most folks, dealing with ambiguity causes stress and anxiety. So he advises using the “rule of threes” technique to ease into the week. List three goals you want to accomplish in your work or personal life this week, then arrange your daily tasks around achieving those goals.
- Create a task list and an accomplishments list - The Sunday Scaries can snowball into self-doubt and negativity, but getting down on yourself isn’t helping anything. Bailey says the antidote for those feelings is focusing on your accomplishments and keeping a running list of all the things you’re proud of from the prior week can help. Update it every Sunday, along with your to-do list, so you take time to congratulate yourself on the progress you’ve made and that little confidence boost can help you start the week off on a positive note.
- Find a self-care ritual - “The path to productivity runs straight through calm, because if we can maintain our composure while the conditions of our work, or our life, are changing, we can still accomplish what we want,” Bailey says. Practicing self-care can help us cope and ease anxiety, so find what works for you, anything from spending time with loved ones, to meal-prepping healthy lunches for the week or relaxing with a book.