Over the past decade, hordes of innocent people have bought the idea that the third Monday of January is the most depressing day of the year – despite there being no scientific evidence to support it. While retailers, beauty salons, travel agents and many other commercial bodies have capitalised on the concept, originally conceived by a PR company, mental health professionals have despaired. That’s because, to many people, the Monday blues is a reality.
This may in part be due to the power of self-fulfilling prophecy. When we hold some expectations about an event, people, or ourselves, we start behaving in a way that matches our expectations. For example, thinking it is the most depressing day of the year, we might start paying more attention to the negative events around us – the boss who doesn’t listen to our good advice, or the partner who isn’t doing enough around the house.
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