Time is running out and the Monday morning wakeup looms.
As the minutes of the weekend tick away, you feel anxiety, despondency, and straight up dread creeping into your being.
These are the Sunday scaries, and even if you quite like your job, these feelings can be a common occurence.
In fact, seven in 10 of us experience anxiety about the week ahead on a Sunday, according to research by Better Health.
They’ve teamed up with leading psychologist Kimberley Wilson to launch a new campaign to tackle this, called Every Mind Matters.
Ahead, Kimberley shares eight top tips for coping with Sunday night dread.
Writing it out is powerful.
‘Try keeping a diary of what you are doing and how you feel at different times to help identify what’s causing anxiety and what you need to do to help manage it,’ Kimberley suggests.
Make a to-do list
Kimberley advises: ‘Make a plan for managing upcoming stressful days or events – a to-do list, the journey you need to make and things you need to take – can really help.’
Have a break from your screen
Come on, you know all that doomscrolling and inbox-checking isn’t doing you any good.
Make the most of your Sunday by having a digital detox. Ditch the phone for the day and immerse yourself in something away from screens – read a book, go on a stroll in nature, bake something tasty, whatever you fancy.
If you can’t drift off, don’t force it
‘When you’re struggling to sleep, your mind can flood with thoughts and worries about the next day, which makes it even harder to unwind,’ Kimberley notes. ‘Instead, get out of bed and do something simple like writing a to do list or reading a book until you feel tired again.
‘Good-quality sleep makes a big difference to how we feel mentally and physically, so it’s important to get enough.’
Release muscle tension
Kimberley suggests: ‘Releasing muscle tension is a great way to ease your Sunday anxiety – all you need to do is take 30 seconds to repeatedly squeeze, hold, and release your fists, breathing slowly in and out.’
Catch up with loved ones
Why not schedule in a regular weekly call or IRL catchup with pals for Sundays?
They’re likely experiencing the Sunday scaries too, so if you can use social connection to tackle the negative feelings together, that’s a wonderful thing.
Move your body
‘Being active can help you to burn off nervous energy,’ says Kimberley. ‘It will not make your stress disappear, but it can make it less intense.’
Build your anxiety toolkit
Do some Googling for grounding exercises, breathing techniques, and CBT sheets that can help you feel more prepared for moments of anxiety.
‘Search Every Mind Matters for more free ways to be kind to your mind,’ Kimberley says. ‘Take the free, Mind Plan quiz to get a personalised mental health action plan with practical tips to help you deal with stress, anxiety, low mood and trouble sleeping.’
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