We’ve all experienced it.  We get into our offices on Monday morning and we get a case of the blues.  We had a good weekend – maybe visited with family or friends.  Maybe hunkered down with a good book.  Perhaps we went to a much-awaited movie, worked in the garden – you get the idea.

So the Monday morning blues take over.  We get into the routine of the day or worse yet – we face the inevitable “crisis of the moment” that either materialized for real over the weekend or just in someone’s head!  We go through the day with no sense of having accomplished anything and the blues continue.

That’s a negative scenario, right?  BUT, what if the Monday Morning Blues evolve into the SUNDAY NIGHT DREAD??  Your negative emotions can’t even wait until Monday morning to rear their ugly head.

You know the feeling.  You are winding down your weekend, squeezing out those last hours and minutes for fun or just keeping up with all you had to do that weekend.  The feeling of dread comes over you like a veil, causing you to feel like you are in a fog and you can’t tell what is ahead of you.  Your experience tells you it will be more of the same tomorrow and you don’t want the weekend to end.  You can’t sleep or you become restless.  Reality sets in. Things get real.

It doesn’t have to be that way, trust me!

These feelings you have are trying to tell you something – but what?  Can you step back and tell what’s real and what only feels real?  What a novel question – what only feels real, but isn’t?

When we focus on what’s real, things are really happening around us.  Real things are deadlines, meeting profit projections, making a speech in front of a large audience, reporting out on the progress of a project.

The “real” deal issues can involve fires, car accidents, illness in our children or our parents……this is when things get really real.

When we focus on what simply “feels” real – that’s a different story.  We introduce thoughts that direct our behaviors and cause our feelings of stress, dread, and the blues.  This can happen at work or in our private life.

How does that happen?  Take this work scenario:

You have a deadline.  It’s tight.  Lots of things have to happen to meet it.  Many people are counting on you to make it happen. Then your thought process starts going wild:

“I’ll get fired if I don’t meet this deadline.”

“I’m dependent on a lot of people to make this happen and they are going to let me down.”

“There is no way we can get this information together in time.”

Wow!  Just writing that made me stressed out – I can only imagine how you feel if you’re in that position.

HOW OUR THOUGHTS CONTROL OUR BEHAVIORS

So, how do you overcome these feelings of stress and dread?  You have to work at breaking the pattern of your thoughts.  Not the pattern of the quick pace or the unrealistic expectations – those may never change.  Those will probably always exist.  The pattern you have to break is your perception of them and the methods you use to respond.  THIS IS THE ONLY THING YOU CAN CONTROL.

5 TIPS FOR CONTROLLING THE “DREAD”

  1. ACCEPT HIGH EXPECTATIONS – In this economy and the competitive nature of all business, there will always be high expectations for achievement.  Don’t spend your time thinking things will calm down. When they don’t, you will only be disappointed.
  2. CLARIFY PRIORITIES – Don’t be afraid to ask for or provide clarification regarding what is needed when.  When competing priorities exist, this can be very helpful in reducing stress.
  3. BREAK THINGS DOWN – Don’t lose sight of the big picture, but don’t let it overwhelm you.  Small, manageable steps are always effective in reaching the goal.
  4. DON’T BE A LONER – You may think the weight of the world is on your shoulders, but it often takes a village to get something accomplished. Don’t be shy about engaging others if they can help and let them know you will do the same.
  5. TAKE A BREAK – Whether it’s a walk to clear your head and get some coffee, or making sure you have some plans for an evening or for the weekend, we all need time to recharge.  If you don’t, the Sunday dread or Monday Morning Blues will seem all the more insurmountable for you.

Simple strategies work best.  When we try to diffuse complex situations with complex solutions, we become even more stressed. When the solution becomes almost as bad as the problem – we have created a bigger problem for ourselves!

Now it’s your turn!  I’d love you to think about these questions and comment below.  I’d love to hear how you deal with these issues…..

  • Do you experience the Sunday night dread or the Monday morning blues?  If so, how does this affect you?
  • Do you feel out of control in dealing with all you have to get done?
  • How would it feel if you could gain control of the one thing you can control – your thoughts – and how you can use them to react to your environment?

I’m a Life and Business Coach working with successful women who have reached a plateau and are ready to shift their lifestyle to something more meaningful.  I’m committed to this movement – and to help women break old patterns! I’d LOVE to stay connected with you so we can stay in touch and you can receive new editions when they are published.  And feel free to share if this resonated with you!