I know it’s Thursday. I’m posting about Monday on Thursday so maybe I’ll remember to think about this before Monday morning. Welcome to how my crazy brain works!
Connotation. One of my absolute favorite concepts to discuss with students! The definition of words that goes beyond the explicit or literal explanation. The feelings and emotions associated with our word choices. Someone who is money conscious would much prefer being described as “frugal” over “cheap”. “Vintage” is so much better than “old”. And when you look at my skin, I hope you think “porcelain” rather than “pale: oh my gracious when was the last time she was in the sun?!” (Getting off topic, but the answer to that question is EVERY DAY. I just lack the ability to change color much… No worries, I embrace the alabaster).
So, Monday. It literally means “the second day of the week”, or more specifically, “the day of the week between Sunday and Tuesday”. Rebecca Black didn’t educate us fully, I suppose.
So why is everyone always so upset with it? Poor, pitiful Monday. Say Monday, and people groan. Say Monday, and people get cranky. Say Monday, and it makes people sleepy now! There’s a negative association with the very word and concept of “Monday”. The “connotation” of Monday is automatically “the grossest day of the week, ugh why does this keep happening?”.
Where does all our negativity come from? Why is it easier to be negative? We talked about this Sunday with some of our students, and we came up with a quick list of things that make us negative: hunger, tiredness, stress, illness, conflict with others. And I wholeheartedly agree with all of these things. All of these things make us negative. But there is also just a general attitude of negativity that is constantly creeping around us. Negativity for no justified reason.
Monday is my favorite example. We talk about having a “case of the Mondays”. We’ve literally created a phrase to describe a common attitude that we just don’t wanna. We just Can’t Even! And everyone knows exactly what you’re talking about! We have all agreed that one entire day of our week is just kinda blah. We wink and nudge each other, “Mondays…amiright?” as we all attempt to just get through this wearisome drudgery of a day.
14% of our week is, in advance, decidedly negative. And why? Just because that’s when the week starts? Just because we have to go to work? Just because we have to go to school? And let’s be honest, Monday starts to bleed into Sunday as we THINK about how much we don’t like Monday and don’t want it to come. We’ve all felt it. Sunday Night Blues. How much we will miss the weekend (or how much we should have accomplished), and now we have to face another week.
And maybe we’re not even trying to be negative. We’re just commiserating in tiredness, right? Maybe the weekend was GREAT, and we’re just sad to be leaving it. But again, why do we have to be sad? Why are we dragging our feet? Are we really that upset? Or is that just the habit we’ve learned as we begin the week? Because even this seemingly innocent perspective can color the entire experience of the day.
Changing our culture of negativity has to be intentional. So I’m trying really hard to be nice to Monday! It’s the beginning of the work week, and let’s make that a refreshing thing. The beginning! A fresh start! As I thought about Monday, I remembered that it literally means “moon’s day”, and that has a random personal significance to our tiny people. They LOVE the moon. I have no explanation why. They love to search for it at night, they love when you can still see it in the morning sky, they love finding cartoon pictures of it in books. So we’re going to celebrate Monday.
Yes bad days happen. Bad moods happen. But I want to make this small attitude shift in myself, to not automatically be mad at Monday.
Monday is just a day. Just a name, an idea we invented in the first place. So we can change it. We can embrace it. Smile! And be nice to Monday.
*I just have to share that while originally writing this post ON a Monday, WordPress stopped saving changes, I lost the whole thing 1.5 times, my computer wouldn’t update, the media files were lost, and my potty-training son…well, stopped potty training. My phone then crashed for no reason and I lost all contacts and all pictures since January. Mondays? Amiright?