January often proves to be a challenging and slow month for many people. The return to work and the resumption of daily routines can make January feel quite depressing. These feelings are said to become the most prominent on the third Monday of the year, coining the term “Blue Monday”. Various factors contribute to this collective mood, including bad January weather, failed New Years resolutions, the challenges of returning to work and the joy of the festive period fading away. However, this year we have decided to overcome these negative thoughts and change “Blue Monday” to “Brew Monday”. Keep on reading to find out what this is and how to get involved!
Brew Monday is an initiative created by the Samaratins, a UK mental health charity, and has been around since 1953. The initiative is aimed at encouraging people to connect over a cup of tea or coffee on Blue Monday to combat feelings of loneliness and depression by promoting simple conversations and connections. The charity also state that this can be done on a Monday morning or a Saturday night because they believe “if you’re sharing a cuppa and listening, you’re doing it right”.
There are many ways to get involved this Brew Monday to help combat these feelings of loneliness. If you’re in work why not host a coffee morning with your colleagues by following these fun and easy steps:
- Invitations: Invite your Colleagues via Email
- Decorations: Create a cosy and inviting atmosphere using calming colours and incorporate different elements that promote relaxation
- Beverages and Snacks: Arrange for a variety of tea, coffee, and hot chocolate options to suit everyone’s needs. You could also include a variety of breakfast snacks such as fruit, pastries, and cookies.
- Conversation Starters: Why not place conversation starters on desks to promote different types of conversations between colleagues. You could include ones that relate to positive experiences, goals, and well-being to encourage meaningful discussions.
- Team Building Games: To further promote connections, you could also include mini teambuilding games for your colleagues to take part in. Try to include games that promote collaboration and positive communication.
If you’re at home this Brew Monday, there are also many ways that you can get involved.
- Set up a virtual zoom or facetime with a family member or friend and encourage them to bring their favourite brew with them and have a catch up.
- Recipe Exchange: Share your favourite hot beverage recipes between friends and encourage everyone to try each other’s before comparing notes!
- Online Games Night: Why not set up a virtual games’ night or morning with family or friends and encourage everyone to enjoy their favourite drink whilst participating in some friendly competition.
- Virtual Movie Day: Or you could select a movie between friends and watch together virtually before giving them a facetime or call and discussing the film. This could also work with a book, and you could create a mini book club!
Whether you’re at work or at home this Brew Monday there are many ways to participate. We’ve also listed below a tea and coffee recipe for you to try if you’re feeling adventurous!
Spiced Vanilla Caramel Latte Recipe:
1/2 cup of strong brewed coffee
1 cup of coconut milk
1-2 tablespoons of spiced caramel syrup (combine caramel syrup with a dash of nutmeg)
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
A dash of cinnamon powder
Whipped cream (optional, for topping)
Brew Coffee: Make a robust cup of coffee using your preferred coffee granules or make an espresso.
Heat Coconut Milk: In a saucepan, heat the coconut milk until it’s hot but not boiling. Stir in the spiced caramel syrup, vanilla extract, and a dash of cinnamon powder.
Combine Espresso and Spiced Coconut Milk: Pour the hot espresso or coffee into a mug. Slowly pour the spiced coconut milk over the coffee, allowing the flavours to mingle.
Optional Toppings: Add a generous dollop of whipped cream on top for a luscious texture.
Garnish with Adventure: To further enhance the adventurous spirit, you can experiment with a pinch of chili powder for a subtle kick.
Gently stir the latte to blend all the exotic flavours.
Citrus Mint Green Tea Recipe
2 green tea bags
1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves, torn
1/2 orange, thinly sliced
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced
4 cups hot water (not boiling)
2-3 tablespoons honey or agave syrup (optional, for sweetness)
Fresh mint sprigs for garnish (optional)
Prepare Green Tea: Place green tea bags and torn mint leaves in a mug
Add Citrus Slices: Thinly slice half of an orange and half of a lemon. Add the citrus slices to the mug
Infuse with boiling water: Pour the water over the tea bags, mint, and citrus slices.
Allow the tea to steep for 2-3 minutes to avoid bitterness.
Stir in honey or agave syrup if you prefer a sweetened tea. Adjust the sweetness to your liking.
However you choose to celebrate Brew Monday, remember there is also a chance to fund-raise money for the Samaritans and help someone else this January. For all information on how to do this you can visit the Samaritans website here.