Sunday ‘scaries’: 6 ways to stop work ruining your weekend

Don’t hide under the covers on a Sunday – there are ways to stop work worries from taking over your weekend.

The Monday blues have extended to Sunday night, with more of us feeling anxious about the week ahead – before the weekend is even over.

Fretting about the demands of the coming week is becoming increasingly common – about 76 per cent of workers reported experiencing the Sunday blues in a survey.

Feeling anxiety, stress or sadness about the impending week is a phenomenon known as the “Sunday scaries” – and it has the potential to ruin half your weekend.

So instead of dreading the final day of the weekend, how can you turn it around to better use it and recharge yourself?

Here’s how to shut down the Sunday scaries for good.

Remain present

It’s easy to get caught up in thinking about the upcoming week on Sunday, but why waste a perfectly good day off?

Equilibrium Psychology founder Gemma Cribb suggests when you find yourself negatively anticipating the next day, remind yourself that Monday hasn’t happened yet and it’s something for future you to think about.

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If you’re going to worry, give yourself time to do it

If you find yourself unable to stop thinking about Monday, Gemma says to set aside some “worry time” in the afternoon to allow yourself to do just that.

Sit down and make a list of all the things you have to do and prioritise your tasks from most important to least important.

Give yourself permission to think about all the stress and all the worry.

“It has a really interesting effect where if you give yourself that time… you can be more successful at compartmentalising your thoughts,” Gemma says.

Keep occupied

Plan your Sunday so you’re busy and don’t have time to start worrying.

“Make Sundays a day where you catch up with people, where you do activity-based things that keep your mind off work,” Gemma says.

Plan something fun

Instead of Sunday being a day full of doing chores and running errands, Gemma suggests rearranging your weekend so that you have the chance to relax and do something you enjoy that isn’t work-related.

So whether it’s a lazy breakfast reading the papers or watching a movie with a friend, schedule something to look forward to so that when you wake up you’re upbeat about what’s ahead.

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Sweat it out

Gemma says make a point of going outside and doing some exercise on Sundays.

Not only does it get your endorphins flowing, it also tires you out so by the time you get to bed, you’re ready to sleep and thus avoid your mind racing about the week ahead.

Prioritise getting a good night’s rest so you’re ready to tackle Monday morning.

Make it a work-free zone

Generally work is one of the biggest causes of the Sunday scaries, so Gemma suggests avoiding doing any work or checking your email.

The same applies for talking about job issues – while it may feel cathartic at the time, can actually have a more detrimental effect.

“Keeping work at work is the best thing,” she says.

Written by Tania Gomez