The Perfect Sunday: How to Beat the Sunday Blues

If there’s one thing all humans can agree on, it’s that Mondays were sent to try us. The thought of returning to work after two glorious days of freedom can make it hard to even get out of bed – let alone face emails, conference calls and the perennially broken office photocopier. Of course, it’s not just our Monday mood that suffers – that icky feeling can often leach into Sunday too.

So, what can the average person do in the face of serious Sunday blues? The answer lies in a mixture of activity, good food and relaxation. But for more inspiration, check out this dreamy itinerary for things to do on a Sunday.

9am – A good book in bed

Sundays were made for sleeping in, but you’ll want to avoid snoozing until midday and messing up your sleep schedule. Set an alarm for an hour after you normally rise for work, grab a cup of tea or coffee, and settle back in bed with a good book.

To cultivate the ultimate Sunday atmosphere, opt for some serious comfort reading; we’re thinking young adult fantasy, Jane Austen or a good old murder mystery.

10.30am – A lazy brunch

The perfect brunch is all about getting the small details right and indulging in a good balance of sweet and savoury. Foods that will satisfy your morning tummy rumbles and keep you full until the afternoon include:

  • Wholemeal bagels with smoked salmon & cream cheese
  • Porridge with semi-skimmed milk, honey & banana
  • Wholemeal toast with scrambled eggs, grilled tomatoes & avocado

If you’re hosting brunch for family or friends, you can make the whole affair feel that bit more special with a tablecloth, napkins, and some fresh flowers.

Midday – A leisurely stroll

Post-brunch the temptation will be to collapse on the sofa and snooze the rest of your Sunday away. Instead, pull on some comfy shoes and head to your nearest park or garden. Getting out in nature is a proven stress-buster, and some light exercise will release endorphins and help you sleep better later on.

2pm – A spot of cleaning

Cleaning and tidying might not be high on your list of fun-time activities, but there are a few genuine benefits to be gained from rolling your sleeves up and tackling the chores.

First off, a messy home can have the effect of raising your stress levels – so cleaning can be a great way to defeat pre-Monday jitters. Secondly, there’s nothing more relaxing than coming home after a long, tiring day to a clean home. Monday You will be so grateful to Sunday You.

4pm – A classic movie

Now you’ve earned some sofa time, it’s time to do some serious indulging. This is also about the time that your brunch will be wearing off and your instinct to forage for snacks will be kicking in.

So: pick out a classic film that’s high in nostalgia value and comfort factor (a good ‘80s rom-com never goes amiss), rally a film-watching buddy and prep some movie snacks. We’d have to go for a cheeky hot chocolate and popcorn with freshly melted butter, for the full cinematic experience – but fresh fruit, nuts, or even a cheeseboard can work just as well.

7pm – A light dinner

After a quiet day mostly spent indoors, a light dinner can be a good idea – particularly if it’s following an indulgent Friday and Saturday. Ideas for a light, nutritious dinner include:

  • Asian-style baked salmon with brown rice, avocado & peas
  • Cold meats with green salad & potato salad
  • Vegetable soup with bread & cheese

Post-dinner, you can get any washing up out of the way and prep yourself a virtuous packed lunch for Monday.

8:30pm – A guilt-free snack

We know, it’s only human that people feel guilty about breaking their New Year’s resolutions – particularly when it comes to indulging their cravings after dinner.

But if it gets close to bedtime and you’re feeling peckish there’s no harm in indulging in a light snack. If you’re seeking something wholesome, go for a bowl of all-bran cereal with semi-skimmed milk or some fresh fruit and nuts. It’s also hard to go wrong with a good old cuppa and a 90-calorie Fibre One Salted Caramel Square.

9pm – A winding-down session

Relaxing at the end of the day is essential for getting a good night’s sleep. The problem is, many of us leave our winding-down until way too late in the day to benefit from it.

Instead of spending those last couple of hours of the week watching a movie, messaging friends online or playing a computer game, step away from the screens entirely and take some time to yourself.

Whether it’s soaking in a hot bubble bath, reading in your favourite armchair, giving yourself a manicure or doing some yoga exercises, you’ll find that putting down the electronics can make a real difference. Honestly, that game of Fruit Salad Frenzy can wait…

10.30pm – A sensible bedtime

If there’s one thing you need to prepare you for Monday, it’s a good night’s sleep. Aim to be in bed by 10.30pm and, even if it takes you a while to drift off, you should still get a solid eight hours – work hours allowing, of course.

Short of a free puppy and a massage from the hottie at work, that’s pretty much our perfect Sunday sorted. Let the relaxation commence!