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monday

Garfield became famous for his saying, "I hate Mondays", but I think we all feel the same. 

As Friday brings a sense of elation; Monday can do just about the opposite. 

Every Sunday night brings a new wave a stress, daunting and panic which pretty much ruins the rest of your time off.

With these simple steps to make you Monday blues go away, it'll be Friday again in no time. 

Don't live for the weekend

Find something you love to do and do it on a week night. If you only feel joy at the weekend, you may as well feel it during the week too. And it will make Monday go by a lot faster.

 

Relax

Don't overload your weekend with tiring activities. Take time to relax and recuperate from the past week so you will be as fresh as a daisy come Monday morning. 

 

Don't sleep in

The same sleep schedule all week will help you feel calm on a Monday morning. If you sleep in on the first day of the week, it will drive you crazy for the rest of the day. 

 

Plan ahead

Plan ahead on a Sunday night. Figure out what you will wear, pack your lunch and have everything organised so you won't be rushed on Monday. Start the week off on a good foot. 

 

Hit the hay early

If you are tired on Monday, it will only add to the stress of a hectic day. Nobody got time for that!

 

Pump some tunes

There's nothing better than listening to your favourite songs, so why not do exactly that on a Monday morning? It will not only get you in a good mood but it will also kick start your energy for the day. 

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Considering we need every ounce of energy to get though Monday, it's a cruel fact of life that our Sunday night sleep is often the most disturbed of the week.

Whether it's a case of tossing and turning all night or jolting awake at ungodly hours, the hours before the start of the working week is easily our least favourite.

However, if you think it comes down to little more than trepidation regarding the week ahead, you'd be wrong.

According to sleep experts, us humans are absolute martyrs to our Circadian Rhythm, so it's highly likely the reason you can't sleep on a Sunday night is because you threw your body clock out of whack over the weekend.

Sleep psychologist, Hope Bastine, elaborates on the point in ELLE, saying: "Over the weekend we have disrupted our usual, albeit unhealthy, sleep pattern. We've had a lovely lie in and repaid our workweek sleep debt and are now feeling well-revived"

"We're creatures of habit governed by our body clock, the Circadian Rhythm, and routine is the primary language of the brain. So when we change our usual habit, our brain feels out of sorts."

Hope says you can combat this by adhering to a more regular sleeping pattern over the weekend, and, most importantly, only go to a bed on a Sunday night when you are tired, and not because Monday morning has started looming.

Ditch the idea that you need an early night on Sunday, and instead listen to your body's needs in order to gt the best start to the week ahead.

'Enjoy those me-moments,' Hope suggests. 'Read that book you've been meaning to read, take a bath, or pamper yourself. Get your early night on Monday night instead!'

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If you love the 90s and big Hollywood dance numbers, then this video will totally get you motivated for Monday.

The clip is a mash-up of 92 – yep, 92 – different dances, all rocking along to Gonna Make You Sweat.

From hunky Zac Efron in Hairspray, to Joe Manganiello's Magic Mike XXL number, if this video doesn't get you moving, we don't know what will.

Now, sit back, relax and enjoy the numbers – unless of course, you want to get up and shake your booty off to what will be a great day.

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So once again it’s Monday – the ultimate day of good intentions and solid aspirations to change for the better.

But it you feel like you need a serious kick up the bum when it comes to your diet (especially if your weekend meals consisted of chipper, Eddies, pizza and noodles), there are a few simple steps that can make a real difference.

For one, it’s time to stock up on the following:

Fillet steak: Good quality beef – of which this country is awash – is great for giving you a dose of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a compound that studies have shown help to whittle your core. (PS for the more adventurous, kangaroo meat is also high in CLA).

Coconut flakes: So long as they’re unsweetened (check the label) they're loaded with medium-chain triglycerides that are burned as energy rather than stored like other fats. Hurrah!

Spinach: Studies have shown that a spinach-packed juice every morning can really help you shed weight. The reason? Thylakoids – which are found in abundance in leafy greens such as spinach. They help you to keep you full AND burn fat. Double-win.

Barley: Great for when you need a carb-hit but want to stay away from an entire loaf of Brennan’s batch bread. Barley just doesn’t get the praise it deserves, in fact. Stick it in a soup or casserole, or cook it on its own as an alternative to rice.

Cherries: We all know that staying up late is bad news for your waist-line – so get a really good night’s sleep by snacking on cherries. They’re a natural source of the sleep hormone melatonin – something which helps to regulate your hunger.

And if you're looking to lose weight fast, don’t forget about these gems either:

  1. Yogurt
  2. Tomato
  3. Balsamic vinegar
  4. Honey
  5. Almond butter
  6. Cinnamon
  7. Garlic
  8. Lime
  9. Coriander
  10. Dark chocolate

 

PLUS! Two easy-peasy sweet treats to try…

Crunchy energy bites
Mix together 3 tbsp honey, 175g uncooked barley, 50g chopped cherries, 4 tbsp almond butter, and 1/2 tsp of cinnamon.

Roll into eight circles (like a biscuit), and place on parchment paper.

Then refrigerate for at least 20 minutes, before serving. 

Keep in a lunch box until you want more.

Chocolate-covered cherries
Break 30g of good-quality dark chocolate into a heatproof bowl.

Microwave for 15seconds before removing and stirring. Pop back in for ten seconds if required, and repeat until the chocolate is melted and smooth.

Then dip four/six whole cherries in the chocolate to coat.

Place on a plate and sprinkle with one generous tsp of coconut flakes.

Eat immediately!

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Oh Mondays. They’re not a barrel of laughs, are they? From mid-afternoon on Sunday, the prospect of beginning a new work week hangs over us like a cloud, with the fear reaching its peak around the early evening.

Monday is the day of the week we dread facing, the one we daydream about missing somehow. Maybe a harmless but highly contagious illness? Or a blizzard that only affected transport routes to our office? Something, anything to avoid the grim Monday morning commute and that awful feeling that’s hard to shake for the whole day.

Rather than skip it though, we do our duty and listlessly go through the motions, willing the day to end before it has even begun. We console ourselves with the fact that tomorrow is Tuesday, which is practically Wednesday – it’ll be the weekend before we know it!

Maybe you’ve heard the saying, “you don’t hate Mondays – you just hate your job.” To be honest I find that statement a little harsh. Find me someone who loves their job on a Monday morning and I might reconsider, but I reckon we’d all rather a day off than a 7am start to battle through traffic to the office.

Aside from the early mornings though, Mondays aren’t all bad. It just depends on how you let yourself view them. Yes, they signal the end of the weekend and the end of our two days of total freedom. But they also pinpoint the beginning of a new week – a fresh start and another first go at things.

Whether you had a positive or negative week last time around, let Monday be the day you motivate yourself to do the best you can and to achieve something new. Today is not just a day in your weekly planner – it’s a new chance.

Even if you have a bad day ahead at work, why not make Mondays a little more appealing by doing something nice for yourself or for others? Grab a cheeky coffee – and one for your co-workers, too. Be polite. Smile. Do something small to make the day memorable. Make plans for after work or set yourself goals to achieve during the day. Give your Monday a sense of purpose rather than letting it be an endurance test.

Monday morning is never going to be the brightest part of your week – nobody likes being dragged from their cosy bed after two days of lie-ins. But starting the day with a little positivity and drive could be all you need to get going.

So next Monday, try to start the day with a spring in your step and a clear vision for the week ahead. It’s has to be a better strategy than wishing the whole day away.

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