By Mike Zaremba
It was about a week ago when this term of "Blue Monday" entered my consciousness during a Float House owner meeting of the minds. We had all of the owners from the various Float House’s both in BC and Alberta come together to talk all things float biz related. We were exploring various marketing ideas when the owner from Float House Edmonton put forth a project relating to “BLUE MONDAY”. If I had heard of this day in the past it most likely had been many many years ago in the days when I actually regularly listened to mainstream radio or television. It’s possible I heard someone’s strange, artificial radio voice explain this phenomenon to his or her audience. Probably saying something like, “Hey folks, so are you feeling a little down and out this morning? Well that’s because it’s Blue Monday, that’s right this is the most depressing day of the year!”
Blue Monday was a term created by a travel company who was trying to create a formula to explain (or encourage) why people seemed to book more getaways during the mid-parts of January. Needing that break from the winter months and also theorizing that this was the time when all of the holiday season credit card bills came into people’s mailboxes. Seems like a plausible idea! From their take it was the most depressing time of year.
What a great marketing awareness campaign for us, Float House, a commercial float centre who’s primary service is renting out time in flotation tanks to people. A tool, an environment, a practice being highly touted and supported by compelling research for it’s mental health therapeutic applications.
INTERESTED IN TRYING YOUR FIRST FLOAT? USE THE PROMO CODE "RECOVERY" TO SAVE 20% OFF A SINGLE FLOAT!
Piggy-backing on this day known to be the most depressing day of the year, tying in the concept of people taking a proactive and personally responsible approach to maintaining optimal mental health seemed like an excellent idea!
So I thought...
A quick couple of google searches very surely debunked this entire concept of Blue Monday, “RATS!” Turns out this isn’t the most depressing time of year in the Northern Hemisphere, nor is it when the most suicides occur. The whole notion of Monday’s being the most depressing day of the week seemed to be in question as well from the BBC article I consulted.
Perhaps there is still promise in this now debunked day of depression. Perhaps I can still scour the bottom of the bowl to bring something worthwhile forth from any Blue Monday attention that this time period (post-holidays, mid-winter, back to the grind) represents.
I believe there is! This being that we are ultimately responsible in many ways for the choices we make. Perhaps it’s the choice to seek help, or to let help in, or to re-frame the story we are telling ourselves. And being responsible for one’s choices also connects us to taking care of ourselves, ideally in a proactive way. Knowing that Life has it’s challenges, it has it’s curve-balls and obstacles that we would never wish to experience and there is no way we could have prevented, BUT, there are also decisions we can make that we know are in our best interests towards our optimal mental health. Doing or avoiding activities that are going to serve our mental health (moods, emotions, motivations, perspectives, etc.) are our responsibilities.
So my proposal is that although this Blue Monday idea doesn’t carry a lot of supportive evidence with it, we can use it’s invention as a kind reminder that life has it’s challenges and we can make decisions to help ourselves versus hinder ourselves from a mental health perspective and (I bet you can see where I am going with this) the practice of floating, once or twice a month is empirically showing tremendous results to support optimal mental health especially in the realms of anxiety, depression, insomnia, and PTSD. It is a safe, non-contraindicating complimentary alternative medicine that has potent physiological and psychological impacts to our Beings.
There you have it, the day that doesn’t really mean anything having a purpose and why I think the “Blue Monday” is a worthwhile gimmick.