Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Be careful out there.

At the end of every roll call in the 1980s TV cop show 'Hill Street Blues', Sergeant Esterhaus would instruct his officers 'Let's be careful out there'.

This is advice we'd do well to heed on January 2nd, as Moodscope's statistics over the past couple of years suggests we're in for the unhappiest day in January, in average terms, and with so many long faces around, it's probably a good day to tread lightly.

Why should today be such a glum one? Well I think it's got a lot to do with the extended Christmas break being finally over, with many returning to work, and lots facing a quiet January after a few weeks of spending time around others. In the northern hemisphere it's not normally helped by nasty weather and pretty short days (even though they've been slowly lengthening since December 21st).

I think there are two quite different ways of handling the knowledge that the mood forecast isn't exactly set fair today. One (less helpful) is to head into the day with dread. Another, however, is to use the information as a useful fore-warning.

If you checked the weather bulletin before leaving home in the morning and learnt that rain was on the way, it would pay to take an umbrella and raincoat.

If you were told that it was cold and flu season, it would be sensible to take precautions such as regularly washing your hands and perhaps dosing yourself up with vitamin C.

In much the same way, maybe you'll head off into the day knowing that those around you may be inclined to a touch of the blues (they could be snappy or low-spirited) in which case it seems to make sense to cut them some slack. Do the same for yourself too - be kind to you today, in the comfort that after the month's moodiest day, the only way is up.