I can almost hear the groans after people read the title of today’s blog post. The title isn’t mainly a lame attempt to be contrarian. It’s intended to cause a small paradigm shift in our thinking. As a society, we’re far too serious about the concept of Mondays. Why do we have to conform to that attitude?
My old guru famously repeated a small lesson about living a joyful life. He said there are two very important questions for working people to ask themselves. When you wake up on Monday mornings, do you feel the strong desire in your guts to go to work? Then, when the workday is finished Friday afternoon, do you feel the satisfying sense of accomplishment and can hardly wait to return home?
When we pause and objectively look at a Monday on a calendar page, we see that it is just another 24-hour delineation of time. Society has assigned strong emotional values to some of them. Weekend days, particularly Saturday is traditionally celebrated because it is not a regular work day. Friday is esteemed because it is the day before the day we don’t have to go to work. Monday is the traditional day of dread because we begin the cycle of the work week all over. Sunday is the polar opposite of Friday because people know the next day is Monday.
As we analyze the social meanings of the various days, it seems like we waste a whole lot of emotional energy on them. If work is so dreadful of a place to be, why must we put ourselves through it most of the year? Perhaps some of us have placed ourselves in circumstances that require responsibility for the well-being of a family or to repay mortgages on a home and vehicle. Since these are the results of choices we’ve made, it’s a good idea to derive the optimum benefit of such choices.
So, how might we best discover a way to live an optimum, happy lifestyle and yet fulfill our responsibilities? One time-tested way to cause this paradigm shift is to consciously create passion about some aspect of one’s work. There is probably at least one thing that a person really cares about their job that makes them feel honestly good about doing. With that in mind, people can remember that there is something to enjoy and anticipate regardless of whether the workday is Friday or Monday.
If there is absolutely nothing fulfilling about the job, then serious planning and searching for new work may be in order. Why should we spend the largest share of each day of our lives doing things we hate to do? The obvious choice is to spend each day, including Monday, doing satisfying work. We all have an idea about our own dream job. Why not take a chance on doing it?
If a job change seems too extreme, there is another bit of pithy wisdom we can take from the pages of self-help books and various wisdom traditions. An attitude of gratitude is one of the most recommended pieces of advice ever given by anybody. The idea of gratitude has been with humanity since prehistoric times. We can feel this beautiful emotional state about every day of the week. We can even allow gratitude to flow through ourselves on Mondays. There are few things as gratifying as being happy to be alive another day, even on Monday.
Thank goodness it’s Monday.
The Blue Jay of Happiness quotes Facebook’s CEO, Sheryl Sandberg. “I don’t believe we have a professional self Monday through Friday and a real self the rest of the time. It is all professional, and it is all personal.”