Do you ever suffer from the Sunday Scaries?
The Sunday Scaries are feelings of dread and anxiety that occur on Sunday in anticipation of the upcoming work week. These feelings usually begin in the late afternoon or the evening. However, some people also experience them on Sunday mornings.
Why Do People Get the Sunday Scaries?
Many people start to feel anxious on Sundays. The demands and pressure that you face Monday through Friday are usually much greater than those that you face during the weekends. That can make the transition from Sunday to Monday feel intimidating.
There is also a strong connection between the way that you feel about your full-time job and the frequency and intensity with which you experience the Sunday Scaries. The less you like your job, the more likely you are to dread Mondays.
How to Overcome the Sunday Scaries (Without Changing Jobs)
Changing jobs is one way to try to overcome the Sunday Scaries. However, that is not a fast or simple fix. In addition, even if you land a job that you like, it is still possible to experience Sunday anxiety at certain points of life. Here are three ways to help you overcome these unwelcome feelings:
1. Plan the upcoming work week the Friday before.
You are more likely to suffer from the Sunday Scaries when you feel overwhelmed about your upcoming work week. Planning the upcoming week the Friday before gives you a sense of control. You can disconnect more easily during the weekend, and you can show up at work on Monday with a greater sense of calm. The upcoming work week feels much less intimidating when you have already set your schedule and identified your top priorities in advance.
2. Renew your energy during the weekend.
Many people stay up late on the weekends, but that just saps your energy and makes it even harder to transition back to work on Monday. The best weekends energize you for the upcoming week. There are countless ways to end your week strong. For example:
- Spend quality time with friends and family.
- Get in a good workout(s).
- Get great sleep.
- Go on a day trip or local adventure.
- Participate in meaningful community service.
- Attend a religious/spiritual ceremony that is important to you.
- Check out a new or favorite restaurant.
- Take a class on a topic of interest.
- Attend a comedy show, sporting event, or concert.
- Enjoy a hobby like writing, painting, or photography.
Don’t waste time during the weekend dreading the next week. Get busy and make the most of your weekend. That will make it easier to transition on Monday.
3. Schedule a fun activity for Monday nights.
For nearly ten years before the COVID-19 pandemic, I taught a group exercise class for over 50 people in my town on Monday nights. It was one of the highlights of my week. I never experienced the Sunday Scaries (even during some periods over those years when I disliked my full-time job) because of how much I loved teaching that class. I honestly looked forward to Mondays.
What do you love to do in your free time? Save some of those activities for Monday nights, and your Sunday mindset will change for the better.
Summary and Final Thoughts
Many people experience feelings of dread and anxiety on Sundays. Here are three ways to overcome these unwelcome feelings (without changing jobs):
- Plan the upcoming work week the Friday before.
- Renew your energy during the weekend.
- Schedule a fun activity for Monday nights.
Like the Sunday Scaries, many people also experience dread and anxiety when they are about to return from vacation. The three strategies above can also help you avoid negative feelings at the end of a trip. Plan for your return before you depart, renew your energy during your vacation, and schedule a fun activity for the day of/after your return. That will make your transition from vacation easier, too.
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About the author: Pete Leibman is the Creator of StrongerHabits.com. He is a best-selling author, keynote speaker, executive recruiter, athlete, and peak performance coach. His work has been featured on Fox News, CBS Radio, and CNNMoney.com, and over 500,000 people across the world have read his articles.