The third Monday of January is officially the most depressing day of the year. Monday 15 January 2018 is Blue Monday – the day when we may feel flat and demotivated – but is it real and what can you do to improve your wellbeing?

“Blue Monday” was originally conceived by a British holiday company in 2005 but has now become an annual event in the national media calendar.

The Blue Monday formula states that variables such as cold weather conditions, how big our debt is, amount of time since Christmas, how long since we jacked in our New Year’s resolutions and low motivation contribute to a supposed mass depression on this day.

Mental health charity Mind is critical of the notion of Blue Monday, claiming the concept has no foundation in scientific research. A statement on their websites says: “Here at Mind, we think it’s dangerously misleading. Those of us who live with depression know that those feelings aren’t dictated by the date.”

However, branches of the Samaritans charity across the UK are aiming to turn this year’s Blue Monday into Brew Monday and will be offering a cup of tea and a chat at events across the country. The Samaritans helpline is free to call every day of the year if you feel your low mood is not just seasonal.

To beat simple January blues you can practice altruism. There’s a growing body of research that links altruistic behaviour with improved health and a greater sense of wellbeing.  Help us here at Noah’s Ark  to raise money for our new hospice building by taking on one of our challenge events and spreading the word to your friends, family and colleagues.

“Altruism promotes positive physiological changes in the brain associated with happiness.”
~ Mental Health Foundation

Take a look at just a few ways you can get involved – What are your New Year goals for 2018?