Beat Sund­ay-night blues

From Pure Matters

There's a biological reason we feel so down when the weekend begins slipping away, says Craig D. Marker, PhD, director of the Anxiety Research and Treatment Clinic at the University of Miami. "Research shows that just thinking about the stressful workweek ahead can send an influx of cortisol, your body's stress hormone, into your bloodstream and up to your brain." Instead of curling up in a ball on your couch, try the suggestions below to keep from getting bummed out.

Slow down.Anxiety is all about the future, but living in the present will bring you into a calmer mind-set. Elena Brower, co-owner of Virayoga in New York City, does this with a snail's-pace Sunday supper. "Eat slowly, focusing on the texture of the food," she says.

Start a tradition. Planning a low-key movie night with your mate or a few friends is a nice way to wind down the weekend, says stress expert Claire Wheeler, MD. Turn it into a regular event and you might even find yourself looking forward to Sundays.

Phone home. Scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Wisconsin National Primate Research Center found that when women hear their mother's voice it can reduce their stress hormones, producing an effect similar to a hug.

Flip through old photos. Researchers at the United Kingdom?s Open University examined how much people's moods rose after eating a chocolate snack, sipping an alcoholic drink, watching TV, listening to music, or looking at personal photos. The music and chocolate left most people's moods unchanged; alcohol and TV gave a slight lift (1 percent), but the winner by a long shot was viewing pictures, which made people feel 11 percent better. Splurge on a frame that flips through digital photos of your family and friends or favorite vacation.

Diffuse your stress. In an Austrian study, researchers wafted the smell of oranges before some participants and lavender before others. The two groups felt less anxious, more positive, and calmer when compared with participants who were exposed no fragrance at all. Add a few drops of either oil to a room diffuser.

Plan something for Monday. "Even if you use part of Sunday to do chores, you'll feel better knowing something great is happening the next day," says London-based life coach Fiona Harrold. Book a massage or arrange to dine with a friend. Whatever you plan, mark in big and bold on your calendar.

Source: Pure Matters


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