Tips to Boost Your Mood on Blue Monday

Today is Blue Monday, which is known as the gloomiest day of the year. The day was coined in 2005 by a travel company as a marketing tactic. Their goal was to inspire people to go on adventures and participate in new hobbies, despite the days being short and cold. While there may be a lot of pressure in the month of January to stick to New Year’s resolutions, head back to classes, and deal with financial pressures, there are ways that you can manage your stress. Keep reading to get ideas on how to boost your mood today, and throughout the winter semester!

Connect with others

Having good social support may help protect you against the harms of stress. It is also good to have different types of connections. Aside from connecting with family and friends, you could get involved with your community or on campus. For example, volunteer with SAMRU or find a group of pals who share similar interests by joining a SAMRU Club (be sure to attend the Winter 2023 Clubs Expo on January 18th and 19th – it’s from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm both days on Main Street)! 

There are also weekly programs at the SAMRU Centres and West Gate Social where you can connect with others, find support, and relax while listening to live music. Check out to see the full schedule!

Visit the Peer Support Centre (Z210)

If you need food or financial support, come by the Peer Support Centre (PSC) in room Z210 on the second floor of Wyckham House. At the PSC, you’ll find the main Food & Hygiene Cupboard, Free Breakfast on weekdays starting at 8:45 am, emergency financial support, referrals, and more!

You can also place an order for a Good Food Box, which are filled with fresh fruit and vegetables, and are delivered monthly to SAMRU Reception (Z222).

Make to-do lists

There are three types of lists that are beneficial when it comes to completing everything that you need to get done:

  1. A master list. This type of list lays out your long-term goals. 
  2. A weekly project list. This should contain everything you need to complete in the next seven days.
  3. A high-impact tasks list. This list shows you everything you need to prioritize.

Crossing items off your to-do lists is a great way to track your progress, not to mention it’s super satisfying to be done with a task! If you’re finding it difficult to make time for the things you enjoy, adding them as a priority on your to-do list might be helpful.

Move your body

When you move your body, it releases endorphins, which help your mood improve. Moving your body may also help take your mind off anything that’s causing you stress. Try taking a walk through campus, or head to the gym after class. Even if you only have a bit of time or energy, any movement helps!

Spend time in nature

Spending time in nature allows you to slow down and be in the present moment. There is plenty to see, hear, and feel, and as a bonus, sunlight helps boost your mood (just don’t forget your SPF, even in the winter)! Combining movement and nature may be especially helpful – if you feel like a change in your workout environment, moving your body outdoors could provide a new and relaxing experience.

Practice Meditation

Studies have shown that meditation relaxes both your body and mind. All you need is a quiet location, a comfortable position, and an open mind. So how does meditation help? Studies show that meditation:

  • Can help to relieve stressful feelings
  • Provides tools to cope with stress and uncertainty
  • Reduces negative emotions or attitudes
  • Nourishes creativity
  • Helps you develop patience
  • Allows you to focus on being present

Mindful provides this free guide on how to meditate.

Talk to a counsellor

If you’re finding that the above tips aren’t helping to improve your mood, or you’re feeling stuck, talking to a counsellor can allow you to work through your feelings and find solutions. You can visit MRU Wellness to access professional mental health care services.