Guest Post: Monday Morning Mindset – Overcoming Overwhelm & Anxiety

Screen Shot 2014-10-11 at 9.05.33 PM

The lovely Leanne from Loving Yourself to Health is back to share the Monday wisdom that changed her life. Read on – you can’t help but be inspired (even on a Monday). 

There is something about a Monday morning that can bring about a fresh burst of anxiety.  You open your eyes from sleep and remember that the weekend is very much over – and right ahead is a brand new week, full of tasks and actions and a much longer to-do list.

I shared my Monday morning anxiety patterns with some friends of mine, and was not surprised to find it was a really common feeling.   Diets often start on Mondays, new goals, new intentions, new focus.  Mondays seem to be the day that sets us up for the week and the pressure that arises can show up as overwhelm and anxiety.

Anxiety is formed from a focus on the future, it’s the unknown, mixed with the desire to get things done, the need to achieve, succeed (not fail) plus the pressure we put ourselves under. It can all swoop in and knock you off your feet before you’ve even had breakfast.

When I observed my workweek, I pretty much only felt content and ‘safe’ on Thursday and Friday. I also loved Saturdays and Sunday mornings, but from about 1pm on Sunday overwhelm for the coming week would creep in. Monday to Wednesday was often so busy my feet wouldn’t touch the ground. I would start mentally listing everything I needed to do for the new week, which always meant the rest of my Sunday evening disappeared and I had a complete ‘headspace-energy-zap’.

I realised that I was only grounded 3.5 days per week. I was losing half a week to anxiety, overwhelm and pressure, each week, over and over.  I roughly calculated that around 240 half weeks or 120 weeks of my working career were lost. 30 Months. 2.5 years. Spent stressed out.

Lose the Anxiety & Dream Your Ideal Day

I created my ‘Day Dreamer’ sheet to help me to dream up one day at a time (keeping me present). The idea is that you complete the sheet before bed and take the intention for tomorrow into your dreams.  There is science behind this, but explained simply, we take our intentions into our subconscious mind which is the part of our mind that ‘makes things happen’.  When we sleep it’s pretty much the only time that our conscious mind (our chattering, worrying, planning mind) is quiet, letting the subconscious get to work.

Have you ever gone to bed unable to make a decision and you wake up clearer? Or you dream about something and it somehow becomes real? That’s due to the magic of the subconscious mind.

So, I stopped trying to plan out a WHOLE week on a Monday and just allowed myself 20-30 minutes of creative design before I went to bed each night, one day at a time.

This Day Dreamer allows me to create what my ideal day looks liked. I include exercise and rituals that I would love to achieve, my top 3 focuses, foods I would like to remember to nourish my body with and a gratitude list. So that when I wake up in the morning, I don’t get lost in a sea of to-do-list… instead I have already laid out my top focus points. Obviously the natural flow of your day might change when new things arise, but trust me when I say having it all planned out helps keep overwhelm at bay. Chaos LOVES a system!

Another important way I eased my Monday anxiety was by making Mondays my least busy day in terms of ticking things off the list like a mad thing. Doing so made my headspace clearer, I felt more motivated, creative, inspired and it meant there was less dread at the start of my week. Most people that I coach on this, say ‘I couldn’t do less on Monday’s as there’s too much to do’.  I agree, but there will ALWAYS be jobs to do, always. But there won’t always be as many Mondays to cherish.

When I did less on a Monday – I would sleep in, take longer breaks, walk in nature, have a long soak in the bath, keep my diary clear – and the world didn’t end. I didn’t lose my job or my business. I just took a slower, more grounded climb into the week ahead. I think Mondays are now one of my favourite days.

My Day Dreamer is a free download – I really hope you love it and it helps you create your own amazing day.  If you aren’t doing a job you love and that is causing you a different kind of stress, please email me about what we can do to create a career that you love.

‘Happy every day of the week’. Make each day special.


Leanne x

P.S. if you can’t reduce the amount you have to do on a Monday, that’s understandable. But if you can’t slow down your tasks, you can still slow down your mind! Make an intention to slow down your thoughts, only think of today, breathe deeply and list all that you are grateful for. That works well too.

Connect with Leanne:








Luk Beautifood


Birkenhead House, Hermanus


PURE Papaya Care


The Healthy Life


JSHealth Vegan Meal Plan


JSHealth Travel Plan




14 Day Slim Down Plan - 2 weeks to a leaner you!


The JSHealth Shopping List - Stock up on these foods for a healthier household


Nutrition 101 - A step by step nutrition guide to optimal health


Emotional Eating Guide - Learn how to rebuild your relationship with food and your body


The Clean Life - An Expert Guide To Health From The Inside Out


Restart Plan - Cleanse your system in 2 - 4 weeks & reveal a slimmer, healthier you


JSHealth Partners


Hi Jessica, I believe in synchronicity so when I was guided to you .on FB I was intrigued and inspired. I turned 46 last week and my husband bought me your book. I wanted to thank you for sharing your wisdom in such a beautifully presented way. My  copy is now filled with tabs and post it notes with actual notes throughout. I am dairy intolerant since having my gallbladder removed 15+ years ago, I don't eat meat, very minimal gluten and was told 12 months ago my gut was not digesting my food properly so I wasn't receiving sufficient nutrients and taking supplements would be a waste of time.  My weight fluctuates tending to gain rather than lose but now I believe I have a tool to help me bring my body back into balance that I need for my health and longevity of life - so again thank you. The first few steps to creating a stronger path forward for my health has found its foundation in your beautiful book, The Healthy Life.

With kindest regards Samantha

I'm writing this email because I wanted to tell you how much I love your blog and how you really helped me in my health journey. Thank you for sharing all your advices and experiences.

When I started my studies, I was drinking lots of coffee and I was eaten the wrong foods, and feel bad about it, I wasn't at my best. So I had done some research on the net but at first I didn't found advices that are for me, and then I found your blog. It was exactly what I was looking for, good advices and healthy recipes. Now I'm following your advices on rest more, and snacks between meals and prep the meals and take time for myself to reconnect with my body and let go my anxiety, etc, and I have a more balanced life and have a new relationship with food thanks to you.

I bought your book and it's honestly the best book I have ever bought. I suffer from IBS and anxiety. I have paid so much money seeing naturopaths however after reading your book and all of your tips I'm noticing so much of a difference, so simple and easy to follow. And symptoms have dramatically decreased. Also you have helped me to relax. Currently drinking the protein health smoothie! Thankyou your amazing.


Hey Jessica!
I haven’t yet brought ‘The Healthy Life’, but I do have the clean life and your slim down plan! I would like to thank you so much for the knowledge your share and the message you put across about health and wellness. I’m studying Nutritional Medicine in Melbourne and absolutely love the philosophy that you share with your JSHealth community. The work you’ve done to show people that leading a healthy lifestyle isn’t boring, tasteless, difficult or depriving is amazing and hope to share the message myself one day. You’ve inspired me to start my own blog , to share the message and have taught me so many things about my own health! You should be proud of your achievements! Thank you again

- Jacinta

I searched for help and tips through the Internet and found Jessica Sepel. This is seriously not exaggerated, but she was the reason why I have dared myself to eat again, to have snacks in between, to nourish my body. I could slowly improve my negative thoughts about my body image and my stupid anxiety of gaining weight. Besides, The Cleanest Gut was awesome too! A huge thank you! Especially from my mum. Seriously, without you I wouldn’t be where I am now!


Congratulations on your new book! It looks absolutely gorgeous. I’ve been following you on Instagram for a few years and you’ve inspired me to slowly but surely eat healthier without giving myself a hard time when I don’t. It made me so happy (and weirdly proud) to see the Daily Mail article on The Healthy Life. I remember trying out your recipes before you even had your eBook out! I can’t wait to get my hands on the book. Keep up the great work.

– Sophie

Cooking in this way truly brought out the foodie in me and has instilled a huge passion for health and wellness! Life throws you hard and frustrating things sometimes but I truly believe that this is where we learn more about ourselves and what our passions in life are! Thank you for inspiring me on my journey to health and wellness!


I am a yoga teacher in Johannesburg and am thrilled to have bought your book today. I love making healthy, nutritious food for my family, friends and fellow yogis! Thank you for this book and your inspiration (had to share a pic of my book on my recipe stand in the kitchen).

– Helene

I bought your beautiful book during the week and told my bestie to go out and buy it also! I love love love it. It is the book I would give to my younger self if I could (I am 41 years old). Everything is just so sensible and informative and is definitely a book all teenagers should have. This should be a text book for girls becoming teens. I will love going back and re-reading it many many times and can't wait to make more of the recipes. Thank you Jess - you are an incredibly inspiring woman and you should feel so proud

Michelle Curtis

My fiancé bought your book and we have cooked some of your meals. Amazing! I love your outlook on a healthy lifestyle and your hints and tips with preparing tasty meals are fantastic. Thanks for reviving us to live a healthier lifestyle and get our bodies wedding ready.