Feeling anxious or sad on Sunday night or when returning from a vacation is very common. At the most basic level, it can help to remind yourself that transitions are hard for humans, no matter what age you are. Acknowledging that Sunday night is a moment of transition might help you invite a little self-compassion for the all-too-human experience of anxiety in the face of change.
Here are some specific tools that might help you with the Sunday blues:
Reframe the order of your week.
Rather than thinking of Saturday and Sunday as the weekEND, think of them as the beginning—the foundation upon which you can build the rest of your week. So start your week off on Saturday and Sunday getting grounded, connecting with yourself, and setting the tone for the rest of your week. Friday becomes a happy end of the week, and Saturday becomes a wonderfully relaxed way to start your new week.
Organize your Monday to-do list before you finish work on Friday.
Worry is the brain’s way of turning over a problem to solve it. So taking the time on Friday to be considerate to your Monday self has a twofold benefit: First, it may reduce your anxiety. Tying up all your loose ends on Friday means you know exactly what you need to do when you sit down at work on Monday. So your brain won’t feel the need to spend processing power on Sunday night trying to get organized. Second, this is an act of self-love and compassion. Yes, it takes a little discipline. But you will quickly see that it’s worth it.
Create a bedtime ritual that brings you peace.
If you make times of transition more predictable and enjoyable, it changes the tone of that transition and can shift your perspective. Don’t overthink it, and start simple. Pick something that brings you peace and commit to it every night before bed. If you miss a night or two, don’t worry, just re-commit until it becomes a practice. Some ideas: enjoy a cup of tea, do 5 minutes of meditation, journal about a few highs and lows of your day, take a bath, or give yourself a foot massage.
These three practices help dissolve back-to-work anxiety by reframing how you look at it, being kind to your future self, and grounding and appreciating the moment.
If you would like help with back-to-work anxiety, the therapists at Evolve Wellness Group are experienced in helping people with a wide variety of struggles, including grief, eating disorders, anxiety, relationship issues, body image, and more. Get in touch today for a complimentary 15-minute intake call.