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Feeling down Blame it on Blue Monday: Today is the day we feel at our lowest ebbWoes include travel chaos, feeling poor after Christmas and lack of daylightMajor drop in motivation comes from continued winter darkness
00:55 GMT, 21 January 2013
10:04 GMT, 21 January 2013
How are you feeling today Chances are, not that great…
Because this morning you woke up on what has come to be known as ‘Blue Monday’ – the day of the year on which most of us feel at our lowest ebb.
There is indeed not much going for the third Monday of the year.
Feeling blue: The third Monday of the year is the day on which most of us feel at our lowest ebb
If you struggled with travel chaos this chilly morning, that will only have added to the woes that come from feeling poorer after an expensive Christmas and minimal hours of daylight.
Added to failed New Year’s resolutions, a general drop in motivation, and the summer far away in the future, you could be forgiven for not wanting to get out of bed at all.
On the plus side, we are likely to be in better form tomorrow.
But for the 24 hours of Blue Monday we will just have to grit our teeth and have an early night.
Miserable: People have got a lot to feel depressed about at this time of year
A report suggests that a major reason for a drop in motivation comes from the continued winter darkness after the brief highlights of Christmas and New year.
A survey by Anglian Home Improvements into the impact of reduced daylight over the winter months found that the vast majority of us feel it has a negative impact on our wellbeing.
Their report claims 79 per cent of us feel that limited hours of daylight has a negative effect on our mood.
A spokesman for the company which quizzed 2,000 respondents said: ‘The survey shows a clear link between natural daylight, mood and motivation.
‘It’s encouraging to learn that little changes, like making sure you sit near a window or somewhere with as much natural light as possible, can make a big difference to how we feel and cope with winter.’ It has been suggested that the concept of ‘Blue Monday’ was based on junk science drummed up by a travel company as a clever ploy to have us booking holidays to sunnier climes.
It is thought the date was picked out by psychologist Cliff Arnall after he came up with a scientific formula based on the length of time until next Christmas, holiday debt and the likelihood of giving up New Year’s resolutions.
Mr Arnall first wrote about ‘Blue Monday’ seven years ago – in a press release for Sky Travel, a now defunct British TV travel channel.
He based the theory on the ‘hibernation’ effect – a time of year when people feel tired, don’t exercise, stay indoors and eat comfort food.
He has said previously: ‘It is the combination of factors that make life right now particularly uncertain.
‘There is threat of job redundancy and the cost of food and fuel are going up.’ Since the idea of Blue Monday has become well known Mr Arnall, from Brecon, Wales, has admitted the idea of a single most depressing day was ‘not particularly helpful’ because it became ‘a self-fulfilling prophecy’ and that achieving happiness and being less materialistic was a year-round aim.