The most depressing day of the year, which could adversely affect people’s performance at work, is just around the corner.
‘Blue Monday’ falls on Monday January 16th 2017 and is said to be the day when people feel the most depressed and may be in need of an extra motivational boost from their employers to lift their mood.
This theory was established in 2005 by Cliff Arnall, a life coach and happiness consultant working for Sky Travel, who put together a marketing campaign explaining the formula behind Blue Monday in order to encourage people to book holidays, after being tasked with finding the best day for trips to be booked.
He explained that by the third Monday of January, Christmas was almost a month ago, new year’s resolutions are likely to have been broken already and the winter weather is most probably miserable. A serious case of the January blues is also likely to set in due to high post-Christmas debt levels preventing people from being able to make plans that they can look forward to.
All of these factors combined means motivation is likely to be at an all-time low, meaning employers may need to organise something for their staff to look forward to on this day.
Mr Arnall’s intention was for people to channel their negative mood into booking a holiday, but businesses could encourage their workers to use Blue Monday to set motivational goals for the coming weeks and months, with a reward for their hard work if these targets are met, such as an evening out or a pay bonus.
What’s more, employers should also be aware that staff who struggle with mental health problems such as depression and anxiety may find Blue Monday particularly overwhelming, so they should make sure they are equipped to provide adequate support to workers who need extra help at this time of year.