Another Sunday evening has arrived, and I can bet what a lot of you are thinking about. It’s the dread that comes over us when we start obsessing that the weekend is almost over and tomorrow morning we’ve got to head back into our own personal Cubicle Farm hell.
It doesn’t have to be that way. I can say this because I spent YEARS feeling like that. I suffered through the Sunday Evening Blues time and time again, week after week. Every Sunday afternoon as the sun passed its high point in the sky and headed for the horizon, I could feel the gloom and doom settling on me.
This website is all about helping you survive the cube farm where you work. In the long run, there are numerous things you can do that will eliminate or greatly reduce the Sunday Blues for you. But if you’ve just found this website, I want you to have something you can use right now.
Some of these ideas will be more workable for you than the others. Just focus on the one or two or three that will make a difference for you! Please leave a comment at the bottom to let me know what you are feeling, or what you do about your Sunday Blues.
1: Take Someone For A Walk
Yes, it’s simple, but it can work! Take your wife or husband for a nice walk, or your child or parent or friend or neighbor. It can be around your neighborhood or at a nearby park or beach. It can be long or short. But just go. The movement will help, and focusing on the sights and sounds on your walk will get your head out of its funk.
Relax, be in the moment and notice what you see around you. See the gardens in your neighbor’s yards. Say hi to the people you see. Let yourself forget about the anxieties that come from anticipating tomorrow, and just be present.
And here’s a thought, it doesn’t have to be a person you walk with. Do you have a dog? Try going for a nice walk with your dog. No dog, no one else to walk with… Go alone! But don’t take your gloomy thoughts with you. Leave them at your front door when you close it behind you.
This doesn’t have to be a hardcore, sweat-dripping, lung-crushing workout. Just about any exercise will help you. Burning some of that energy will calm you down, and the focus on the effort will give your mind a break from obsessing about tomorrow.
If you don’t normally exercise, start small, start smart. See #1. If exercise is not new to you, pick an appropriate workout and give it a shot. Maybe it’s a nice run, or a bike ride. It can be thirty minutes of weight training, or perhaps an instructor led class at your local gym. What it is doesn’t matter nearly as much as that you do something.
3: Work At A Project On Your List For An Hour
Most of us have a list somewhere in the house, a list with a variety of projects or chores on it. So, go find that list and pick something to work on. It doesn’t have to be something you can finish in the hour, and you don’t have to limit yourself to one hour.
But if you start with even just that much of a commitment, and if you let yourself focus on that project, you will feel better when you stop. This is all about getting something done. It’s about feeling like you have a life and that you did something with it before the weekend ran out and you had to return to work. So do it!
4: Spend Some Time In Gratitude
Grab a pen and paper, find some quiet space, and start scribbling some notes about what you have to be thankful for. If you’ve never done this before, it can be difficult to get started. Think about being thankful for your spouse or girl/boy-friend. Or maybe your kids or your parents. How about your: health, home, friends, pets, and so on.
Some people will say a gratitude journal should not include material things, but I feel it’s still helpful to feel grateful to have a car, a bank account, a favorite suit or pair of jeans, a bicycle, and all that!
If you are still having trouble, maybe spend a few minutes thinking about all the people in the world, or your country, or even just your state or town, who don’t have many of the things you do have. Again, I don’t want to make it a habit to feel better because I have more than other people. It’s just a way to bring focus to how much we do have.
5: Make An Escape Plan Of Your Own
Again with the paper and pen. Find a quiet place, and do a little brain-storming with yourself about what you want out of life, and what you think it might take to get there.
If you have a significant other or life partner, maybe they’ll be willing to participate in order to help you work through your Sunday Evening Blues. Don’t worry about getting too detailed if it doesn’t come easily.
The idea is to let your mind run loose for a while and realize there are other possibilities for how you spend your life. As I get more postings here, we’ll come back to that escape plan. The escape plan doesn’t have to involve changing careers if you love what you do. It might be more about finding ways to deal with the parts of your job that make you unhappy.
It really doesn’t matter what. But many people find it very helpful to write out what is on their mind, so they can get it off their chest. Yeah, that sounds backwards, doesn’t it?
But really! Write in a journal, or write on your blog if you have one. But if you are at all inclined to write… then WRITE! It’s good for you, I promise!
If you can’t get started, just write whatever is in your head at that second. It might be:
“I’m only writing this because Wayne thinks it will help. Well…”
“I don’t know what to say. I’m sitting on the couch, and Pierre, my cat, is trying to…”
“It’s 7 o’clock on a Sunday and I dread going to work tomorrow because…”
You get the idea, just start writing words. Then write some more. And then… you got it, write some more. If it’s working for you at all, you will get going and you’ll be fine with it. If you’re not into writing at all, maybe it will work, maybe it won’t. But if it does, it will help. Oh, and yes, you will know when you are done for now.
7: Polish Your Resume
I’ve heard it said “action cures fear”, and I’ve lived it! It works. Sometimes, the action that best cures the fear or anxiety about Monday morning is working on your resume. No! This does not mean you are quitting tomorrow. It doesn’t even mean you are looking for a new job.
It simply reminds you that you do indeed have that option. And it also gives you a chance to review the experiences and skills that you have accumulated thus far in your career. Has it been a while since you reminded yourself that you are AWESOME?
Update your resume and you will feel better in two ways:
1 – You get a nice reminder that you are more than a number, that you’ve got skills!
2 – You took action and got something done, and have a resume ready to go!
8: Go Online And Learn Something New
There was a great joke on the internet recently. Something about having a device in our pockets that provides access to all the knowledge of mankind, and we use it look at cat videos. (So what’s wrong with that, anyway?)
Well, it’s Sunday and you’ve got the blues, so let’s forget about the cat vid’s for now, and learn something new. Think about those daydreams you sometimes have, about doing something different for a living, and start searching the ‘net for information about it.
If you need to get further away from the whole career thing, research how to do something totally off the wall and fun. Learn about spelunking, kayaking, sailing, rock collecting, pipe carving, basket weaving, cooking, bee keeping, or ANYTHING ELSE IN THE WORLD!!!
9: Own It!
Last but not least… and quite possibly requiring the most ‘internal work’, is simply owning the fact that it’s Sunday evening, and even though you go back to the Cubicle Farm tomorrow morning, you are going to relax and enjoy it!
You have to be at that point where you can stare the doom in the eye and shout back: “I don’t give a crap that tomorrow’s Monday. It’s still Sunday, and I’m loving life!”
You may not be ready for this last method. You might still be stuck deep in the Sunday Evening Blues, dreading your oncoming case of the “Mondays”. But if you stick with me on this journey, and keep checking back, or subscribe, we’ll get you there.
And What About Those Three Things To Avoid?
Whether or not the nine methods above work for you, there are some that are best avoided. Yes, sadly, I know this from experience…
It should come as no surprise that drinking is a bad idea when it comes to the Sunday Blues. Alcohol is widely used to feel good. And while you may feel good, or forgetful, for a little while, the after effects will be worse and last longer than the feel good part.
Yes, there are fine times for a nice drink. But when you are fighting the Sunday Evening Blues, alcohol is not your friend. Also, its effects on you may lead to B, or worse yet, C below.
B: Binge Eating
Yup, I’ve done this too. Still do on occasion. Nope, not proud, but it’s something I’m working on. So I can tell you that getting into the habit of eating to feel better about something emotional, like dreading work tomorrow will not work out in your favor.
Later, when you are not so stressed about getting a case of the “Mondays”, you will be struggling to lose the weight that resulted from eating to feel better.
C: Wallowing In A Foul Mood
Letting that terrible mood take over and consume your evening is just no good. It’s like letting rats get comfy in your attic. No good. Best to take a stand right up front and get rid of it pronto!
This is important for your well-being, and also for anyone you might be living with! I’ve been totally guilty of this over the years, and it’s one of the best things about learning to be a Cubicle Farm Survivor.
You Don’t Have To Be Miserable
So if you’re having one of those Sundays. Pick one of the items above and give it a shot. It can’t hurt, and it just might convert a miserable evening into one you can enjoy!
Thanks for reading all this. I hope it helps, because that’s why I’m writing this. I want to help you get past all the B.S. and all the dread and become a happy Cubicle Farm Survivor!
I’d love to hear what you think, and hear about anything you’ve found helpful. Please leave a comment below: