Sunday Scaries: Most People Get Stressed on Sunday Evenings
Mon, November 29, 2021

Sunday Scaries: Most People Get Stressed on Sunday Evenings

The survey shows that most people get stressed on Sunday evenings as they expect the coming week / Photo Credit: Shutterstock


Sunday is probably the second least liked day as it signals the end of the weekend and the start of another workweek. This thought leaves many people anxious and stressed about having to face another week of responsibilities—but this anxiety could be a sign of a greater problem.

More than three in four Americans said they experience elevated anxiety on Sunday evenings as they anticipate the start of the week, according to a recent survey. This anxiety is often triggered by hormones linked to job-related stress and dread, which was also found among people who say they love their work.

Sunday scaries

Although it isn't a scientific term, "Sunday scaries" is recognized as a phenomenon in which people grow anxious as Sunday evening rolls around. According to a survey by The Sleep Judge, a website on sleep health, 81 percent of people said they feel a heightened sense of anxiety as they anticipate the start of another week.

Some experience the dread on Sunday morning (15 percent) while others in the afternoon (29 percent). But the survey found that most people (57 percent) get the Sunday scaries at night.

The majority of those surveyed (62 percent) said they are most anxious about Monday rolling around, leaving them to get the worst night of sleep on Sunday (63 percent).



"Restless sleep could be a common symptom of job-related anxiety," the Sleep Judge said, adding that it was common for people who are dissatisfied with their job.

"Anxiety can manifest in long-term mental and physical health concerns," the website noted. "In addition to feeling nervous or tense, anxiety can trigger fatigue, restlessness, and difficulty concentrating."

Albeit being common among people who don't like their job (65 percent), the phenomenon was also found to manifest in people who are happy at work (57 percent).

Stress on the job

Work-related stress is believed to be the cause of Sunday scaries, as per 95 percent of the people surveyed. Curiously, people who have a good relationship with their boss reported having slightly higher anxiety than those who don't get along with their superiors (80 percent vs. 75 percent).

While getting along with their supervisor is a positive sign for their career, the study said this could also lead to burnout due to more work and greater expectations.

"Experts suggest the most common causes of workplace stress include the fear of being laid off, having to work overtime due to cutbacks, the pressure to perform, and a lack of control over how employees perform their duties," the Sleep Judge explained. "As a result, some people may bring work home over the weekend."



The survey also narrowed down the industries that had the highest likelihood of experiencing Sunday anxiety—with education, legal, and finance and insurance leading the ranks (86 percent) and manufacturing at the lowest (72 percent).

Even though most of the industries identified are in-office positions, remote employees may also have great stress due to interruptions, isolation, long hours, and uneven work-life balance.

"According to our survey, remote employees (84 percent) were the most likely to experience Sunday anxiety compared to those working in an office, classroom, or traveling role," the website noted.

Relieving Sunday anxiety

The weekend isn't always enough to recharge employees' batteries and get them ready for another week of grind. And with so many people experiencing work-related stress even on a weekend, it affects both their mental and physical health.

One way to reduce the anxious feeling is to exercise, CNN said, adding that a good workout can also boost mood and enhance sleep. In fact, five minutes of aerobic exercise can help lower anxiety as well as strengthen verbal memory and learning.

To boost the effect of exercising, the news agency suggested doing so in a natural setting. Multiple studies show that a simple walk in an urban park can reduce stress levels, move the brain in a state of meditation, and help people focus less on their negative thoughts.


A good workout can reduce the anxious feeling and can enhance sleep / Photo Credit: Shutterstock


The recent study found that people try to drown their Sunday misery by drinking through the weekend. However, this may not always work for them. CNN advised avoiding drinking as it shakes up sleeping patterns and, thus, reducing the quality of sleep.

Moreover, the news agency also suggested going offline on Sunday. It sounds impossible, especially for people whose work requires them to stay connected, but the sound of email and text notifications can discourage relaxation.

Does the idea make you even more nervous? Then try to check-in as early in the evening on Sunday as you can. The National Sleep Foundation suggests "at least 30 minutes of gadget-free transition time before hitting the hay."
Getting anxious about the responsibilities of the coming week is understandable, but employees should not always feel like this. Jobs can be stressful from time to time but they shouldn't reach the point where workers fail to get the relaxation they need. Stress management practices, lesser take-home jobs, and sound relationships in the workplace should be implemented to help reduce stress and anxiety among employees as well as to help them cope with Sunday scaries.