It’s 2021’s coldest and darkest months, the Christmas and New Year holidays have ended, and your college or work place is demanding your attention again. And although the month of January is filled with well-intentioned chants of ‘new year, new me,’ its more unwelcome companion is the knowledge of how grim this month can really be.And as the seasonal depression and January’s blue Mondays become a part of the new normal in the beginning of 2021, the dreaded outsider that goes by the name of corona is not ready to leave yet. And it insists we spend more and more of our time alone, or with the roomis we’re growing tired of seeing everyday.

To top it all, you can’t stop eating the festive leftovers, and you continuously have to face the guilt of making resolutions you’ll never follow through with.

So the question boggling us all is – ‘2021, are you going to suck as much as 2020?’

Well, NO!

That’s what you need to tell yourself to start the fight with seasonal depression, the post holiday blues and the new normal, no matter how many blue Mondays life throws at you.

And because we all have been feeling the same way, here are some ways we are pushing ourselves through this. We hope some of these tips work for you, too.

1. Accept that after every high, comes an inevitable low

Whether or not you celebrated your way into 2021 with a bang, the slow holidays with its fair share of sleeping in, watching movies with the roomis, or meeting friends and family might have been a peaking high for us during the pandemic. And we all know recovering from that high comes with its inevitable lows.

Simply accepting that and giving in can help you feel better even when a blue Monday looms on top of our heads every week in the month of January.

Our only way to deal with these lows is to embrace them, instead of fighting them. So if you’re not being fully productive or have been feeling like you’ve fallen into a slump, don’t be too hard on yourself. Talk to your friends and family for support, and eat and sleep well to bid the blue Mondays away.

2. Push yourself towards the pre Christmas lifestyle you had

Irrespective of the resolutions you’ve made to become a better you, slowly pushing yourself back to the pre Christmas lifestyle you had can help you start over in 2021. No matter how little you were achieving, you might recall that you were at a better place mentally than you are now.

So a good way to start becoming a better you is to pick up right where you left off.

3. Make changes slowly, but gradually

After a long 2020 of little to no excitement, the holidays changed our perspectives and our way of living, filling our days with some much needed fun and frolic. And with that, came a lot of mouth watering goodies, and the lucky ones among us could catch up on their sleep too!

Now that it’s all over and done with, we’re forced to go back to mundane tasks, be it a much needed decluttering and cleaning of the house, or catching up with work and school in 2021. And that contributes most to the dreaded blue Mondays.

To deal with that, the one mistake we all might be making is pressuring ourselves to transform in an instant, and that pressure could be contributing more to the seasonal depression too!

As Dr. Pragya Agarwal, founder of mental health social enterprise The Art Tiffin, tells the Metro ‘I’m focusing on January to revive, relax and refresh. I’m also focusing on celebrating achievements from the past year, and being authentic and true everyday rather than make huge resolutions.’

So we hope you take this advice and relax, focusing on making changes slowly. The more aggressive you are towards your habits, the longer they’ll stick around. So don’t feel guilty each time you shove festive goodies in your mouth, and you don’t have to follow the resolution of sleeping and rising early in 2021, either. Be mindful of your habits and trust that the changes you want will happen slowly, but gradually.

4. Find a new activity to fall in love with to combat seasonal depression

While you’re trying to combat seasonal depression and blue Mondays to get back to normal life, don’t let your wishes and dreams take a backseat. If you can’t take something up right away, plan your weekends with activities that you’ve been wanting to take part in.

Whether it’s virtual activities around the city or cooking delicious meals, kickstart a new hobby or take up one you had started (or had planned to start) before the holidays intervened.

5. Make time to watch a good movie or a good book (preferably one that matches your emotions)

Just because the holidays are done with, it doesn’t mean you can’t indulge in a good watch or a good read. Nothing beats seasonal depression and blue Mondays like a good movie or a book you can lose yourself in.

Our way of dealing with our emotions is to dive deep into them instead of shying away. So if you’re feeling incurably blue, pick a movie or a book that could make you cry and get it all out. And if you miss traveling, immerse yourself in travel books or nature documentaries to rejuvenate.

6. Don’t let your new year resolutions contribute to post holiday blues

Last but not least, the month of January – along with its seasonal depression and blue Mondays – can become even more overwhelming because of the burden of our own New Year resolutions. So don’t make a big deal out of it if you can’t work on your resolutions right away.

Take some time off thinking about them actively, prepare your home environment for achieving your goals and make realistic goals for when you can start.

Let’s make 2021 a good year!