by Denna Giddons | 16th January 2022
Aside from being the biggest selling 12-inch record ever in the UK by New Order, and a personal favourite, Blue Monday which falls on the third Monday of January has also been dubbed the saddest day of the year.
In contrast to Blue Monday, emotional support and suicide prevention charity Samaritans encourage us to celebrate Brew Monday on the same date. Samaritans say "there is no such thing as Blue Monday as we all have good days and bad days throughout the year". "Brew Monday emphasises the need for us to get together and have a chat, giving someone the opportunity to talk and us a chance to listen".
Blue Monday vs Brew Monday - January 17th 2022
Dr Cliff Arnall first conceived the idea of Blue Monday back in 2005 for UK travel company, Sky Travel. With a combination of cold weather, long evenings, failed resolutions and festive spending he calculated the third Monday in January to be the most depressing day of the year. According to several publications Blue Monday was conceived by Sky Travel in a bid to boost summer holiday bookings. In 2010 Dr Arnall revealed that he had simply picked a date when asked to work out the most depressing day of the year.
Brew Monday encourages us to dispel the myth of Monday being blue and instead start a conversation over a brew. Samaritans want to remind us to reach out for a cuppa and a catch-up with the people we care about. Those of us with pets understand the power of our furry friends to beat the blues on any day. We say, connect with your friends this Brew Monday, arrange a meet up and a cuppa in a local dog friendly café or simply cuddle up on the sofa and give someone who would love to hear from you a call, with a brew of course.
Pets and our mental health
Whilst they can't solve all our problems, pets, especially cats and dogs can be important when it comes to our mental health. Many of us isolating over the last 2 years have sighted our luck in having pets as companions. As a result we have seen a massive increase in pet ownership in the UK since the start of the pandemic.
Having a four legged best friend has been known to help with stress and anxiety. On days where you have nowhere to go, a dog walk can provide great exercise, both physically and mentally. Pets can be great for children too, research suggests those who grow up with pets are more likely to be secure and active in their adult lives.
What our pets mean to us at PAAW HQ
You'll be hard pushed to find a pet parent who doesn't appreciate the importance of their pets in their lives, and at PAAW House we are no exception.
Denna Says "Digby actually became part of my life as a conscious decision to improve my mental health. I had split from a long term boyfriend and really felt the emptiness of living alone. Not only did Digby provide invaluable companionship, he gave me a reason to get up and out on those cold, lonely Sunday Mornings. I've even made new friends because of Digby and without him, I wouldn't be working for PAAW House"
Phil Says "I had wanted a dog for a long time and setting up my own business finally gave me and my wife the opportunity to welcome Bibi into our family. As Bibi is a rescue, we certainly didn't have the most straightforward start, however suffering from a chronic illness Bibi has brought so much positivity to our lives from the cuddles, being our shadow to seeing her develop. I certainly feel very lucky and It's very hard to be "blue'" around her."
Gabby Says "Vinnie has been my rock since the first day I met him, never more so than during the pandemic. His unconditional love shines through in all that he does. He always knows when I am having a bad moment or a bad day and is there to cheer me up. Many of our decisions as a family are made around him as he is the centre of our world. The love I receive from my dog Vinnie is a powerfully positive part of my everyday life".
Warren Says "“After losing my Mum and Boston Terrier Purdy ‘the’ Monster over the mother’s day weekend more than three years ago now - I swear, it felt like a piece of my heart literally died and went black.
I was so sad and in pain that I literally partied 24/7 as a way of forgetting about it, fortunately, the support from my family and friends saw me through these dark times. After a year, I decided, I desperately needed something in my life to love and feel responsible for again …and along came Barry.
I will admit my research went out of the window, he is certainly a handful and challenge at times, and I’m not entirely sure my mum would have approved (I sometimes sit there thinking about what she is saying looking down on the crazy pair of us) but I know she would agree that without him by my side, my life would be very different right now, especially taking into consideration the events of the past couple of years.
He is a good friend who befriends everyone he meets and my reason for being where I am right now, and for that I feel very lucky and will be forever grateful for having him in my life".
We wish all our followers and friends happy days and positive mental health. If you are feeling low please reach out and talk to someone. The NHS has an urgent mental health care website in England.
You can also reach out to:
Samaritans. Call 116 123 (free from any phone) or their Welsh Language Line on 0808 164 0123 (7pm–11pm every day).
SANEline. Call 0300 304 7000 (4.30pm–10.30pm every day).
National Suicide Prevention Helpline UK. Call 0800 689 5652 (open 24/7).
Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM). Call 0800 58 58 58 (5pm–midnight every day).