Blue MondayLast Monday, January 6, was apparently the most depressing day of the year. I heard this on the radio as I was driving to work, trying to shake off the cobwebs from the holiday layoff.  It makes sense: I got used to the idea of kicking back, eating everything in sight, and spending some extra quality time with the family. Sure, I think many of us get used to the idea of living like a retiree. Unfortunately I’m about 20-30 years away from that… depending on how well the ole’ 401K decides to perform.

I began to think about why I would consider going back to work depressing. Is it because we don’t know exactly what we’ll be walking back into? For my fellow sales brethren, is it because we’re starting from scratch with a new quarter and New Year? Am I going to hit my numbers? Is my new 2014 comp plan even attainable?

To me, a big reason why last Monday was depressing for most of us, outside of the obvious fact that we have to get back to work reality, is that we’re worried about what this year has in store for us. The big unknown. But why not embrace it? It’s a much better option than being unproductive with wasted time spent dwelling on “potential” negatives.

All I know is if I’m putting my time in, and every day is an honest effort, I have nothing to hang my head about. I don’t need to worry. It’s a waste of time. Most of what I’ve found myself worrying about in the past rarely, if ever, materializes into the problem I feared.

I came across a great quote from Mark Twain that summed it nicely:

“I’m an old man and have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened.”

So why do we spend all your emotional energy on the unknown? If you’re fearful of the ’14 sales comp, rather than thinking about all the obstacles it poses, why not attack it the same way that you did in 2013?

I often hear that starting your day off with a positive thought can really set the tone for your day.  Multiply that for a week… or why not for the entire year? I bet you’ll be surprised by the impact this would have on your performance at work along with your life in general.

What is your positive thought going to be tomorrow morning?