This Is The Truth About 'The Most Depressing Day Of The Year': Blue Monday 2023

This Is The Truth About 'The Most Depressing Day Of The Year': Blue Monday 2023

Updated on August 24, 2023 11:12 AM by Evelyn Mia

This Is The Truth About 'The Most Depressing Day Of The Year': Blue Monday 2023

(This Is The Truth About 'The Most Depressing Day Of The Year': Blue Monday 2023 Image Credits: The Mirror)

The idea of Blue Monday was originally conceived by psychologist Dr. Cliff Arnall in 2004. He came up with a formula to determine the bleakest day with the first Blue Monday occurring on January 24th, 2005.

How did Dr. Arnall came up with this formula? 

The model : [W + (D-d)] x TQ
M x NA
The equation includes seven variables; weather (W) debt (D) salary (d) time since Christmas (T) time since a failed attempt at quitting something (Q) motivational levels (M) and the need for action (NA). This formula aims to take into account factors such as deteriorating weather in January, financial strain from holiday expenses, abandoned New Year's resolutions and a fading sense of joy from Christmas.

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So when exactly will Blue Monday fall in 2023?

Blue Monday, which falls on the Monday of January and will be on January 16th in 2023 is often referred to as the depressing day of the year. This belief has been fueled by factors such as its timing after Christmas, the delay in receiving the paycheck of the year and our struggles with keeping New Year's Resolutions.

We often wonder why we celebrate Blue Monday

We often wonder why we celebrate Blue Monday

(We often wonder why we celebrate Blue Monday Image Credits: The Mirror)

It's interesting to learn that the term actually originated from a travel company's desire to promote their winter holiday deals.

According to The Independent, Sky Travel enlisted the help of psychologist Cliff Arnall, in 2004 to create a formula for determining the day of the year. This way they could argue that it was the time to book a vacation.

In an interview with The Daily Telegraph in 2013 Arnall admitted that his formula wasn't particularly useful. He explained that he was initially asked to identify the day, for booking a summer holiday. However as he reflected on what he had learned from stress management and happiness workshops he discovered factors that pointed towards the Monday in January being particularly gloomy.

When you add the challenges posed by the Covid pandemic to this mix it's understandable why this day may seem gloomy. However it's important to note that Blue Monday being labeled as the day of the year is not scientifically grounded but rather a marketing tactic that has gained popularity over time.
A neuroscientist writing for The Guardian aptly describes it as unscientific and pseudoscientific. The equation used to determine this day is considered farcical because many of its components are measurements.

For instance, how can one accurately measure everyone's motivation? Combine "time since Christmas' ' with "weather" in a manner?

Despite its lack of validity Blue Monday continues to be discussed every year. This could be attributed to its ability to tap into our emotions and resonate with what we might be experiencing during this time.

Seasonal affective disorder, commonly known as SAD is believed to impact 2 million individuals, in the UK. It presents symptoms of depression, such as feeling down, lacking energy and losing interest in activities. Samaritans has initiated a counter campaign called Brew Monday. They label Blue Monday as a "myth". Encourage people to take out time for a chat over a cup of tea or coffee. The charity emphasizes that our moods can vary from day to day and shouldn't be dictated by a date on the calendar.

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