When most Mancunians think of Blue Monday, they think of a certain 1983 hit song by a certain band but many people believe that the term has another meaning.
But Blue Monday, according to some, occurs every year in the third week of January as everyone settles back into the monotonous world of work after engorging themselves over the Christmas period.
The term was first coined by Sky Travel as part of a 2005 advertising campaign, which claimed that people are more accustomed to booking trips away during the post-Christmas slump as they trudge back into work.
In a bid to keep our readers on top of this depressing phenomenon, MM has enlisted the help of Bez of Happy Mondays to give readers his top tips to beat the blues.
When asked if he had heard of the day, Bolton-born Bez told MM: “Blue Monday? Never heard of it before but I suffer every Monday, especially after the weekend’s activities.”
The maraca-shaker’s first bit of advice is to take on plenty of water throughout the day, especially if you’ve just come off a… ‘busy’ weekend.
Bez said: “It’s the first thing I do, especially after a few pints. As I’ve had a bit of a change in lifestyle recently, and it’s really helped me with the blues.
“If you’ve got enough water inside you it means your body is firing electrically and it cuts out all the hangover you might be suffering on a Blue Monday.”
In light of Blue Monday’s cheerless connotations, Bez’s next tip is to rise above the blues that the day may bring and keep smiling.
“Try not to be too down about shit,” he said.
“The best thing to do is to stock a smile on your face, a really big smile, even though you’re hurting inside.
“It’s about seizing that moment of happiness and knowing that if you give out that happeiness, then you know it’ll come back to you.”
Bez and his fellow Happy Mondays bandmates recently finished touring for the 25th anniversary of their third album, Pills ‘n’ Thrills and Bellyaches.
The tour saw the band play 18 dates across the UK, including two sold-out gigs at the Manchester Academy.
Life on the road can be a lonely affair, but time away from those closest to you, according to Bez, could also be the key to championing Blue Monday.
He said: “Time away from your missus helps as well. You get that little bit of time to yourself, to recover, you know what I mean?
“When you’re suffering the blues you tend to take it out on the people you love the most so try and get a break from each other so you don’t end up taking it out on one another.”
Somewhat inversely to the previous point, the 2005 Celebrity Big Brother winner also believes in spending time with loved ones and maintaining solid relationships.
“It’s all about the love,” said Bez.
“At Christmas these days it’s more about the present-giving. Back in our day all we used to get was fucking tangerines and a bag of sweets and that’s all we needed.
“All this madness, your Blue Mondays and Black Fridays – it’s a joke. We should be more mindful and not worry about the materialistic shit so much.”
Bez’s next tip will ring true for those brave souls who are taking on New Year’s resolutions or ‘dryathlons’, and that is a change in diet.
He said: “That’s my biggest tip. You need to cut down on the sugary shit as that stuff will definitely five you the blues.”
Bez’s final tip is delivered with a laugh that had punctuated all of his prior advice, and as such should not be taken too seriously.
“You could just take a load of Valium and sleep your way through it if you can’t deal with it in a positive manner!”
Image courtesy of BBC, via YouTube, with thanks.