It’s 4pm on Sunday, you’ve still got hours of the weekend to enjoy and yet, your mind has sped ahead to tomorrow morning – and all the work you need to do.
“Sunday dread” – when the stress of Monday seeps into Sunday – is common. A recent survey of 2,000 adults found 88% regularly experience anxiety as the weekend comes to a close, with 3.58pm on Sunday being the most likely time for concerns to kick in.
In psychological terms, the tendency to think ahead too much is known as “future tripping”, explains psychotherapist Lucy Beresford.
“It’s a sign of anxiety, and of not being able to stay in the moment,” she tells HuffPost UK. “For most people, Sunday is very different in tone to Monday, so Sunday dread is when you pitch yourself into the future, focussing on the stimuli you expect to have to deal with the following day.”
As well as ruining your well-earned weekend, Sunday dread can have wider implications for your health if it’s not kept in check, adds Beresford. If we’re not relaxing in our downtime it can leave us feeling stressed, she says, which may affect our sleeping or eating patterns.
“We also over-stimulate our fight-or-flight responses by anticipating things to be dealt with, i.e that presentation we have to make, that awkward conversation with a client, or even just the rubbish commute on a drizzly day,” she says. “Our adrenaline levels are raised and we can start to feel overwhelmed.”
So, how do you keep Monday in its rightful place and ensure you’re enjoying every moment of the weekend?
The first step is to address the underlying problem, says therapist and Counselling...