I was sitting enjoying a Tuesday night glass of Sancerre with a friend and she brought up a brand new way to look at the Sunday night blues and its to add one more day of anxiety induced thoughts about the work week – she is starting the scaries on a Saturday! She’s not alone. I used to watch the clock for 5pm to hit and race off to the bar to complain with my coworkers and wake up on Saturday with a little regret for that 5th drink and alot for what I may have said and a ton of dread about making sure I used my weekend to properly prepare for my upcoming week. No need for coffee thanks, I was running on 100% pure American anxiety.
A new survey by LinkedIn found that 80% of workplace professionals experience stress and anxiety that builds up on Sunday nights before the return of the work week. 80%? WTF?! #wtf?! This means when you go to work or school tomorrow for every 10 people you see, 8 of them barely slept last night. 8 of them tossed and turned worried about their to-do list. 8 of them probably laid in bed most of the night before and this morning creating excuses to NOT come in today.
And instead of this madness starting happening only on Sunday, I think this is just happening all the time. We are constantly running thoughts through our head that never offer us the option to disconnect from work, reset and feel recharged for a work week of ‘never enough’. Let’s face it, are all getting squeezed to do more at work, often with less resources and less money and I don’t know about you but robots?!
And instead of this madness happening only on Sunday’s, I think it is starting to happen all the time. We are constantly running thoughts through our head that never offer us the option to disconnect from work. It can be difficult to reset and feel recharged for a work week of ‘never enough’. Let’s face it, we are all getting squeezed to do more at work, often with less resources and less money…and I don’t know about you but robots?!
All kidding aside, if you suffer from chronic Saturday/Sunday Scaries, does it mean you need to get a new job? Slow down…wait a minute…let’s investigate. Here are 4 things to consider when you’re suffering and if you still can’t get to the bottom of it…welp, yes maybe it’s time for a change of scenery.
- Do you have a plan? Are you controlling your weeks or are they controlling you? Yeah yeah…I know your boss controls you. Consider managing up. Are there meetings that keep you from getting what’s vital done? Is it possible to take a step back and offer solutions that might make everyone on the team happier and more productive? Take matters into your own hands no matter where you are on the totem pole. Your boss will thank you for it.
- Are you more than a weekend warrior? When it comes to rest and routine, did you throw the baby out with the bathwater? For you genzennials out there, what I mean is, are you hitting the bar on Tuesdays a little more than once in a while? Are you skipping a workout and eating pizza while switching between Netflix and Hulu and Prime and Sling rather than turning off your devices and winding down calmly and naturally? When we are hungry, angry, lonely, tired (H.A.L.T.) we often find blame in something easy, like our boss, rather than turning the spotlight on ourselves.
- Ever hear this one…compare and despair? Are you scrolling social media and seeing people younger or less experienced than you living some dream life where they are a digital nomad in Bali? Maybe your high school best friend has the husband and the kids you want and you’re feeling less than enough because of it. Falling down the rabbit hole of comparison will likely only get you one place fast, DESPAIR. Ask yourself instead, do they have something I want for myself? If the answer is yes, ask an empowering question like, how can I create that for myself?!
- Remind yourself why you are doing it in the first place. This is such an obvious one but we forget. Maybe we aren’t working our dream job but we know that it’s a natural stepping stone to get the experience we need to land our dream gig. Or maybe you want to buy a house in 2 years and this is the exact track to get you there. Do an investigation into why you are working there in the first place. Remind yourself of your ‘why’ – write it down on a post it and put it where you can see it. Everything is temporary. You don’t have to be there forever!
Meditate on these 4 concepts and see how you can find a new perspective from the dreaded upcoming work week. If a change in the way you control your day…or…the healthy routine you create for yourself…or…your thoughts about how the other half lives…or…your ‘why’ doesn’t get you relief, then I suggest designing a life you don’t want to escape. We are only here for a short time on this swirling planet and its not worth it to spend 52 weekends a year (or approximately 2500 hours if you don’t sleep) in an anxiety-induced fog. We deserve to live a life of joy so do some personal sleuthing on how you can create that for yourself! If you need some help with this, I’d check out this awesome little exercise I designed to unleash the vision for your dream life.