Self - April 15, 2018

How to Get Rid of Sunday Night Anxiety

If you’ve never experienced Sunday night anxiety, or The Sunday Scaries as my friends and I call them, you’re lucky. This post probably isn’t for you. But for the rest of us, the struggle is real, right? Three p.m. sets in on a Sunday afternoon and all of a sudden, the relaxing vibes of the weekend disappear almost instantly. You start thinking about the week, all the things you have to do, maybe you look at your email, and at times, it’s actually really hard to fall asleep on Sunday nights. NOT FUN.

I actually can’t remember the first time I experienced The Sunday Scaries – maybe college? – but it’s something I deal with pretty regularly. I don’t want to pretend like I have it totally figured out (I don’t), though I do find that I’m experiencing it less and less lately. My girlfriends and I were discussing how we deal with The Scaries, and more importantly, how we avoid them recently, and I wanted to share the things that I thought were really useful. I was already doing some of the tips, but I’ve since incorporated the rest – and it’s been SO helpful. Obviously wanted to share them with y’all and the BTD community!

One of the most important parts of eliminating this anxiety (I’ve found), is first figuring out what type of weekends you thrive in best. Which Sundays feel better than others? Are you being productive? Seeing friends? Relaxing? Working out? As you go through the tips below, think about YOU personally and what you’d react well to vs. not.

Gratitude list & brain dump

Two lists that I make WHENEVER I have anxiety: one for gratitude and then a brain dump. These are two things that without a doubt make me feel better – even if nothing else will. Lots of times I come out of making these lists feeling better and more in control. I’m usually not as busy as my mind thinks. And something about breaking everything down gives me peace about everything that needs to get done and enables me to create a plan of action. Also, I can stop thinking about the things because now they’re on paper  – so my brain can stop trying so hard to remember everything. And when making my gratitude list, I also take it a step further and like to think about what worked last week and things that went well.

Plan something to look forward to

One of the main aspects of The Scaries is dread. The dread of a work week and being thrown back into the grind. I’ve found that planning something on either Monday or Tuesday really helps – as long as it’s something I’m TRULY excited about  – not something I end up dreading. A lot of times that’s a casual dinner with friends or even delivery from my favorite takeout place as a little treat to myself (yes, I’m motivated by food). Find something that you LOVE to do and that makes you happy, and schedule that for Monday or Tuesday. That way, you’ll go into Sunday night knowing something good is right around the corner.

Organize on Fridays

I notice that my anxiety is the worst on Sundays where I know I’m heading into 238492348 emails or unfinished tasks. By organizing life on Friday afternoons and dedicating some time to responding to or organizing emails, Sundays are a lot less stressful – as are Mondays. Dedicate an hour or two on Fridays to getting your life together and you’ll really notice a difference come Sunday night.

Limit alcohol

OK so this isn’t fun and it makes me feel #old, and this might be more personal for me, but hangovers spike my anxiety levels. Especially if I waste an entire Sunday feeling blah, my anxiety is at its worst. I wake up Monday feeling like a hot mess and it’s just not fun. If I’m planning a night out, I try my best to schedule it for Friday so that my Sundays are spent in good shape.

Get outside

Nature is a natural happiness booster, and this type of positive stimulation is great for nixing anxiety. Especially with the recent time change and spring on its way, it’s the perfect time to take an evening walk and soak up sunshine. If your brain is super full, think about leaving your phone at home and not listening to ANYTHING. It’s kinda magical, y’all. I’ve been doing it while driving, and it’s uncomfortable at first, but then it’s so amazing and surprisingly relaxing!

Self-care Sundays

One of my girlfriends said that shifting Sunday evenings into “self-care Sundays” has really helped her – and I LOVE this idea. Instead of binging in front of the TV or your phone Sunday nights, treat it as a longer form of self-love. To me, this would include taking a bath, reading a book, doing a face mask, and then doing the lists I mention below. It’s hard to have anxiety when you’re self-soothing yourself, right? Might even make you look forward to Sunday evenings!

Get Organized For The Week

Although it might sound or seem like just another thing to add to your list, planning time into my schedule to get organized for the week on Sunday afternoons or evenings has been the biggest game-changer for me. I now spend at least one hour every Sunday getting things in order for both my personal and professional life. This usually looks like going grocery shopping, tending to my schedule, making more lists, texting people and following up on things, and setting aside outfits if I have time. Also, I try and make sure I get to bed early on Sunday nights so I can have a well-rested Monday morning. I like to wake up earlier than usual on Monday mornings to have a long quiet time, ensuring I have time to do a little more reading and journaling. Something about starting my week off this way really empowers me!

What About You?

Have you found anything on or off this list to help?


PS: Here’s the comfy tee ($35) I’m wearing in these photos for those of you curious!