‘Mad Monday’ is a term you’ll hear or read about over the next few weeks in Australia if you follow the news. It refers to the end-of-season celebrations for professional players of various football codes in this country. It is often accompanied by stories of high profile players letting off steam by drinking heavily and dressing up in all manner of weird and wonderful costumes. After a long, physically gruelling season, it is the opportunity for the players to forget the strict regimes of training, careful dieting and skin-fold management. It is a time for boys to be boys and have some fun.
Yep, it can get out of control. There is no denying it. Every year we hear about a high profile player or group of players who step over the line of acceptable behaviour and embarrass themselves and damage their reputation and that of their club and code. Generally, it is harmless fun, but sometimes the actions of the participants are downright dangerous and stupid beyond measure.
Despite this, I reckon, Mad Monday is a good thing.
We All Need a Mad Monday
In fact, I think we all need a Mad Monday in our lives. I don’t mean we all need to get blind drunk, urinate on parked vehicles in the street and get arrested for unruly behaviour. But everyone of us needs to stop, take a breath and step out of our day-to-day routines once in a while for the sake of our mental health, our physical health and our relationships.
My definition of Mad Monday is an annual ‘boys trip’ to see the AFL finals. I love it. I go with a couple of close mates and we get away for a few days, eat too much, drink too much and watch several footy games. It is awesome! I laugh more in that long weekend than I often do for months. It refreshes my soul.
I come home feeling very tired, often a little seedy, and always thankful to be home. I then wake up the next day excited to be back in my familiar world and ready to get back to work.
I love work. Work provides a reason for studying and learning, a reason for getting out of bed every day, a regular paycheque and if you are a competitive person like me, it provides the opportunity to set goals and achieve them. It also provides the opportunity to engage with other people, often in a symbiotic relationship where each stakeholder benefits by working with the other.
Work is rewarding. Going home at the end of a long week knowing you’ve achieved much is tremendously satisfying. It gives you purpose.
But work can also be emotionally and physically draining. When each week merges into the next without much rest or any sense of a break, it can wear you down after a while. It is these times when a Mad Monday could be just the thing.
What’s Your Mad Monday?
Your ideal Mad Monday is probably very different to mine. It may take the form of a semi-regular catch up with old friends for lunch, a golf tour, a motorbike trip with your teenage sons, camping with extended family. Whatever it is, the underlying criteria is fun and releasing tension. We all need it from time to time.
If you haven’t given yourself a Mad Monday in a while use this blog as a call to action. Just do it. You’ll be amazed at how a short break combined with lighthearted fun, good companionship and a yummy chicken parmigiana can make you feel energised and stronger to face the challenges thrown your way. Just be ready to hit the gym when you’re back.
I’m already counting down the days until my Mad Monday 2017.
Ben Walsh – General Manager, Recruitment