Beat "Blue Monday... the Most Depressing Day of the Year"

Submitted by edg on Sat, 19 Jan '08 11.00am

Mondays are hard enough, but this coming Monday, 21st January, is "the most depressing day of the year" according to charity group the Samaritans.

The christmas holidays are a receding memory, except for those credit card bill reminders, dropping through your letter-box at this time, detailing your festive splurges. Next month’s pay check is still a week away and for many a tax deadline looms at the end of this month. New Year's resolutions are broken. There's little relief from the cold, wintry weather, with all the daylight hours spent working.

But forewarned is forearmed, and the Samaritans hope to combat this confluence of negative influences with its annual Stress Down Day, designed "to encourage everyone to take better care of their emotional health" and raise awareness about the charity's work while kicking the winter blues.

Slip into something more comfortable

The Samaritans are asking us to "wear slippers to work on Friday February 1st, sell soothing smoothies in the office to boost flagging New Year detox attempts, sponsor colleagues to turn their emails off for a couple of peaceful hours and create a chill out zone at work for people to hire out throughout the day."

Stephen Fry, Trisha Goddard, Supernanny, rugby international Josh Lewsey and John Humphrys are among those taking part.

Trisha Goddard (pictured) said: "The thing that I have learnt to my cost is that if the balance between work and life is not right and you are putting yourself under too much pressure everything else falls in a heap. Support Samaritans Stress Down Day and help raise awareness of the need to speak out rather than bottling things up until they become unbearable."

Among companies supporting Stress Down Day are Royal Mail, Innocent, BUPA, Dorset Cereals, Motorola, Taylor’s of Harrogate, First Direct, Lloyd’s, Trader Media Group, RBC Dexia, Royal London, Allianz Insurance and WPA.

The chain Neal’s Yard Remedies are helping people to beat the January blues by selling a De-Stress Kit, Harmony Gift Box and life coaching guide, ’52 Ways To Change Your Life’ in their Hanover Street shop and donating 10% of profits, on these products, to Samaritans.

The Samaritans, whose service is provided by 16,800 trained
volunteers, encourage people to get involved in the campaign through