Looking after your mental health on Brew Monday

Looking after your mental health on Brew Monday


Today is ‘Brew Monday’, which was coined by The Samaritans to replace ‘Blue Monday’ in order to encourage a more positive light on the day.

‘Blue Monday’ is the name originally given to the third Monday of January every year and is often considered to be the most depressing day of the year due to bad weather, short daylight days, the end of Christmas and New Year festivities, and being a long way from summer.

The Samaritans state:

We all have our good days and our bad days, and those aren’t for the calendar to decide.

“So, we say it’s time to stop this myth about Monday being ‘blue’ and instead start a conversation over a brew and reach out and connect with family, friends, colleagues and loved ones. Any day can be a ‘Brew Monday.’ It doesn’t matter if it’s a Monday morning or Saturday night, or if you’re drinking green tea, black coffee or orange juice. If you’re sharing a cuppa and listening, you’re doing it right.”

The Mental Health Foundation state there is no scientific evidence to back up ‘Blue Monday’ but there can be seasonal variations in our mental health such as experiencing Seasonal Affective Disorder, where symptoms of depression come and go in a seasonal pattern, and are usually more intense with lower daylight.

This ‘Brew Monday’ we’d like to highlight the importance of connecting with one another and we encourage you to get together and have a catch up with friends, colleagues and loved ones. Being there for someone makes all the difference.

Lucy Rogers, our Matron at King’s Norton Hospital in Birmingham, has five mental health tips for looking after yourself:

  1. Talking.

If you are struggling with feelings of depression and sadness, try to talk to someone close to you. If you have been experiencing prolonged periods of low mood, feeling helpless, or you are experiencing negative thoughts, please speak to a healthcare professional such as your GP.

  1. Sleep.

Sleep hygiene is really important in improving mental wellbeing. You can improve your sleep by reducing screen time before bed, or taking a shower or bath to help relax at the end of the day.

  1. Exercise. 

It’s hard to get motivated at this time of year but exercise and fitness is great for your mental wellbeing. Going out for a walk or trying an exercise class you enjoy can boost your endorphins and make you feel a lot better.

  1. Reduce alcohol intake.

Unhealthy coping mechanisms can make you temporarily feel better, but will have a negative effect on you in the long-term. Drinking water and eating well instead can help boost your mood.

  1. Self-help.

Low-level CBT techniques, meditation and mindfulness can all help to improve your mood. There are free apps you can download which will guide you on how to get started. For more information see here.

We hope you find ways to look after your mental health this ‘Brew Monday’. We have included a list of useful mental health sources below.