'Bare Minimum Monday' Is Taking Off – But Does It Really Help Relieve Work Stress?

The TikTok trend revolves around banishing those Sunday blues.
Young blonde man having a break from work at home. He is looking at the phone.
Maca and Naca via Getty Images
Young blonde man having a break from work at home. He is looking at the phone.

Monday gets a very bad rep for most employees. After a weekend which almost definitely went by too quickly, the beginning of the work week feels... pretty dreadful.

It’s why many people say they experience a spike in anxiety the day before, also known as the “Sunday blues” or the “Sunday scaries”, where they’re full of apprehension about the coming days.

A LinkedIn survey from 2018 said over 90% of millennials and Gen Z workers say they experience these feelings, along with 80% of professionals overall.

So you can understand why TikToker Marisa Jo’s new idea has taken off.

Her videos promoting ‘Bare Minimum Mondays’ have gone viral with nearly 470 million views – while the hashtag #bareminimummonday now has more than 140,000 views.

The concept depends on *not* over-achieving on Mondays. You just have to “condense your to do list as much as possible”, according to the TikToker, creating more realistic goals for yourself, removing unnecessary pressure to put on yourself.

In one video, she explained: “Where can you be a little bit nicer to yourself today, where can you cut yourself some slack?”

In another video, Marisa Jo explained that the concept was a “rejection of all the pressure I felt on Sunday and Monday”, and the idea that “productivity is more important than my wellbeing”.

“I had to tell myself to do the bare minimum in order to not make myself sick over how productive I was being.”

She claimed that when you introduce this change, the “pressure was gone, your work was easier, and you felt better”.

The mammoth tasks you tell yourself to do on Monday no longer looks so daunting. Think of it as easing yourself into your work week.

Referring to other workplace trends such as quiet quitting, Marisa Jo also told her TikTok audience: “I think we’re seeing a rejection of hustle culture manifest in lots of different ways and bare minimum Monday is one of them.”

But does it actually work?

Well, workplace solutions expert and CEO of Officeology, Adam Butler, said it just might.

In an email, he explained: “The ‘Sunday scaries’ can be something we all battle with, regardless of how passionate we are about our jobs. However, I think this new ‘hack’ to help cope with the first day of the working week does have its benefits.”

He said that by prioritising your essential tasks, “rather than focusing on everything else you have going on in the week, it helps to reduce feelings of overwhelm and makes your Monday to-do list more manageable”.

Butler added that this would result in a sense of accomplishment without overdoing it.

He also suggested setting time aside in your Monday lunch break to go for a walk or focus on a hobby for half an hour.

“By having an activity planned that you enjoy, it can ease the Sunday night fear and increase productivity.”

The expert suggested that employers can get in on this trend too, by introducing things like “no-meeting Mondays”, or encouraging workers “to block out focus time”.