The ‘Blue Monday’ Myth
The infamous ‘Blue Monday’ falls annually on the third Monday of January marking the breaking point of New Year’s Resolutions, the beginning of a large amount of debt due to holiday spending, low motivations, cold and gloomy weather—all factors that can leave someone feeling not-so cheery.
Although the idea of Blue Monday was orchestrated by a travel company to motivate solemn people into escaping their reality by getting on a plane and vacationing, it has caused a phenomenon that puts a detrimental perspective on actually feeling depressed despite what day it is.
The Faults of Blue Monday
Especially during a global pandemic that seems never-ending, Blue Monday is just a ploy to allow people to feel depressed for one day, and as a result, motivate themselves to be better the next, and throughout the whole year.
While that is extremely unrealistic, it’s also damaging to the perception of mental illness and how it should be “dealt with” on a particular day and the rest of the year will be rewarding and you won’t be as “depressed” or consumed with your mental illness.
Mental illness should never be designated to be felt, or “dealt with” on a single day, or labelled as “one size fits all”.
Continuing To Live With COVID-19
At some point or another, we all hoped that COVID-19 would have been a distant memory, but unfortunately we’re still living through a pandemic that has truly affected the mental health and wellness of each and every person.
Even with support available, most people are feeling the effects of navigating their lives with physical illness and social restraints causing unrepairable circumstances to some families who spent the holiday season without their loved ones.
If anything, COVID-19 has exemplified how vital it is to respect those around us, even if we’re not feeling 100 percent. While we can’t run or hide from it, it’s okay to not be okay about what’s going on in our world. Sometimes it’s easier just to let it out and name how you feel. This can in turn decrease emotions of stress and anxiety.
CMHA Calgary Support Programs
At your own pace, there are people who will talk and help you if you’re struggling. Below are a few supports from CMHA Calgary.
Our Peer Support program provides the opportunity to connect with a Peer Support Worker who has lived experience with mental health issues and/or addiction.
Connecting with a Peer Support Worker can help you feel a sense of belonging–without judgement–and help you learn how to develop resiliency skills.
Peer Support program services can still be accessed over the phone at 403-297-1402 or through email at email@example.com. The emails and phone calls will be responded to in a timely manner based on the volume received between the hours of 11 am – 3 pm on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, and 1 pm – 7 pm on Tuesdays.
Suicide Bereavement Drop-In
This group, facilitated by a CMHA Calgary counsellor, provides a confidential and safe space for those who have experienced a loss by suicide to share, network and meet others who can understand and provide support. Individuals are supported through their loss in an environment where they can create connections with others.
If you are aware of someone who is thinking of suicide and you don’t know how to approach the situation, please watch this video on how to talk to someone in this headspace from our community partner, Centre for Suicide Prevention.
If you are having suicidal thoughts and need help, call the 24/7 toll-free Canada Suicide Prevention Service at 1-833-456-4566 or text 45645 (text available 2:00 pm – 10:00 pm MT)
If you are in an emergency and do not have a trusted person to help you, please call 911.
Our Peer Support program services can be accessed over the phone at 403-297-1402 or through email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We have teamed up with other Calgary agencies to help Calgarians quickly and easily access various counselling and social supports. Visit www.communityconnectyyc.ca, where you can book online for our Suicide Bereavement and Family Support Counselling, and other supports. If you prefer to still book through us, please phone (403-297-1708), or email (email@example.com)