The only difference between a good day and a bad day is your attitude. ~
Dennis S. Brown
There’s a lot of thought and ideas as to why Mondays seem harder to face than the other days in the week. Some of this is backed by scientific research and the rest is speculation. Regardless of whether we’re facing a new week or something much more serious, how we view the challenge is a good predictor of how we manage said challenge.
From as far back as I can remember, Mondays meant the end of the weekend (freedom) and the beginning of the school/work week (captivity). As children, the weekends brought playtime with friends. When we weren’t cavorting about the neighborhood, we were watching cartoons, studio wrestling, and The Wonderful World of Disney.
As adults working outside the home, weekends continue to represent some level of freedom (unless your job requires hours on Saturdays & Sundays.) While we have a multitude of chores to complete before Sunday evening, we do have some flexibility as to how we structure our days (and nights!) Weekends are usually the time to socialize and enjoy leisure activities.
So, if you get the “Monday Blues” and think it’s all in your head, then check out the following 6 scientific reasons why Mondays are the worst. Trust me, it’ll make you feel better about feeling miserable!
Then you can discover 11 ways to beat the Monday blues.
But, this post is really about how attitude affects our lives in the face of serious issues and, more specifically, illness.
I have a friend who is dealing with her second round of cancer within the last ten years. Sue’s first bout was breast cancer, which she beat after surgery and several years of “maintenance” drugs.
She was in remission for close to five years when an annoying cough and congestion sent her back for tests. They discovered the cancer had returned to her lung.
She’s been receiving almost weekly cancer treatments since July and had to go through a second course when the first didn’t wipe out all the bad cells. Last week’s PET scan came out clear and she is in remission again.
That’s amazing and we’re all very grateful, but what really boggles my mind is her attitude. She has remained positive and upbeat through it all. Despite losing a lot of weight, hair, eyebrows, eyelashes, appetite, the ability to taste, enduring localized pain in her shoulder, mouth sores, cough, and feeling tired much of the time, she has kept up her normal schedule!
As a retired high school guidance counselor, Sue has kept busy at the local country club giving tennis and golf lessons, working in the fitness center, and donating time to various committees in the community. She also does consulting work online for college bound students who are preparing for the SATs.
She hasn’t stopped any of it or even slowed down. She owns a car, but prefers to bicycle or walk everywhere she can, weather permitting.
I’m sure that she has her dark moments; how could you not when you’re facing something as terrifying as cancer. Those moments are probably reserved for her siblings and oldest and dearest friends, as she has no spouse or children. But, overall, she refuses to allow the cancer to steal her appreciation of an average day; and for Sue, there’s nothing average about any day. They’re all pretty special!
This wonderful woman has a wealth of friends, all of whom have tried in various ways to offer support and encouragement. But, honestly, she is the one who has kept all of us in a positive mindset by her own example.
Many people in these situations talk about how life takes on a whole new meaning. How they’re able to appreciate the littlest things and truly prioritize what matters. How they understand, with great clarity, what it means to “live life to the fullest.”
It’s important to remember the value that endorphins have and the negative effects of cortisol on our bodies. Endorphins are those “feel good” hormones, released by the brain, that contribute to overall good health, while cortisol (the stress hormone) wreaks havoc on us, both physically and mentally.
Maintaining a positive attitude, whether you’re facing a busy week at work, or a more serious issue, will assist in keeping the body healthy during the ups and downs of life. When I forget or begin to doubt this I think about Sue and am reassured. Attitude really can make the difference between a good or bad day.