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Blue Monday: What is it about?

Blue Monday: ¿De qué se trata?

You've heard of the Sunday blues, but what about Blue Monday?

What is it? When is? And what is its purpose?

 Well, you can stop wondering because we've rounded up everything you need to know about Blue Monday, right here.

What is Blue Monday?

Let's start by announcing that the concept of Blue Monday is a myth! So, take a deep breath and relax those frown muscles as we unravel why this "depressing day" came about and how you can turn it into something more positive.

In fact, this day was simply thought up in 2004 for a travel company. Cliff Arnal, a psychologist, came up with the concept when he created the January blues for Sky Travel, which then used the concept as a PR stunt to promote its winter offerings.

The formula was based on the main factors that were most likely to contribute to low mood.

These are the factors involved in the calculation:

W = Climate

D = Debt

d = Monthly salary

T = Time since Christmas

Q = Time elapsed since we failed our New Year's resolutions

M = Low motivational levels

Na = The feeling of need to act

Blue Monday FAQ

When is Blue Monday?

The bluest day of the year takes place on the third Monday in January. In 2023, Blue Monday falls on January 16.

Why is it called Blue Monday? It's called Blue Monday because it's the time of year when we supposedly feel our lowest and most "sad."

It is believed that we are susceptible to feeling depressed because it is cold, we are back at work, we have to make up all the money we spent on Christmas and we feel guilty for having broken our New Year's resolutions... Oh, joy.

Is it really blue?

Google "Blue Monday" and you'll be presented with a comprehensive list of articles telling you when it is and how it was calculated, thanks to Cliff Arnall's formula.

Scattered in between, you'll also find plenty of references to the phrase "pseudoscience," which basically means it's not scientifically true.

As it happens, Blue Monday has remained in people's minds and been used by companies for public relations purposes since the phrase was first coined and the formula was first unveiled in 2004.

Ways to feel more positive

While Blue Monday has not been scientifically proven, it can be difficult to feel nothing but blue on this day due to the widespread association with it.

Additionally, the factors that have been used in Cliff's Blue Monday calculation are real-life factors: the weather is often gloomy in January, people break their New Year's resolutions early on, motivation levels can be low and there may also be some Christmas debts to pay.

The Mental Health Foundation states that we must guard our mental health against commercial influences.

You can feel less sad if you remember:

  • It's a myth: there are no scientific studies that say Blue Monday is actually Blue Monday.
  • We all have good and bad days, everyone's situations are different and therefore it is impossible for us all to feel exactly the same way on any particular day.
  • In fact, it's a good opportunity to review our mental health... instead of automatically thinking that you feel sad on Blue Monday, reflect on your mental well-being and continue to do so throughout the year.
  • ...and talking to other people, this is really useful to protect our mental health; Sometimes a problem shared can be a problem halved.

4 ways to overcome sadness:

  • Focus on the good things that are happening in your life and try not to let yourself be dominated by things that may have gone wrong or are not going the way you want.
  • Be grateful for what has happened , this will help you focus on the positive things happening around you, no matter how small. For example, you can be grateful that you got a good night's sleep, that you completed your work on time, that your colleague helps you, or that your partner does the shopping for you.
  • Try to smile and laugh more , there's no point in forcing it, but studies have found that laughter can help relieve depression, stress and anxiety. A simple laugh or smile, at ourselves or at others, can instantly lift our spirits.
  • Use positive affirmations – Try starting each day with a positive thought, saying, memory or quote that sets you up for the best possible start. Don't forget to remember it throughout the day.



At the end of the day, Blue Monday is a public relations stunt based on generalizations.

But the "blue" factors in our lives are still real right now.

If you are having difficulty coping, it is essential that you seek help and support. Contact your GP to talk about how you are feeling and to explore the support options available in your area.



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