TikTok users are fascinated by “Bare Minimum Mondays,” a trend which encourages employees to exert as little effort as possible on the first day of the work week.
Marisa Jo Mayes, a TikTok creator based in Phoenix who resigned from her corporate job, coined the phrase “Bare Minimum Mondays,” which has now garnered more than two million views on the platform. Videos posted by Mayes, who now says she is self-employed, depict the 29-year-old completing various chores around her apartment and listening to podcasts before she starts her workday or schedules any meetings.
@itsmarisajo Bare Minimum Monday: Chores Edition ⏱️🧼🎧 #bareminimummonday #bareminimummondays #wfh #selfemployed #selfemployedlife #burnoutrecovery #productivitytips ♬ Theme From A Summer Place – Percy Faith
Mayes realizes that most people with a traditional office job do not have the luxury of delaying the start of their workday or otherwise presenting minimal effort to their employers. She advised her followers in the corporate world to “remove any wishful thinking tasks from your list” and save efforts to “overachieve” for Tuesday.
“One thing I know would have helped me when I was in corporate is to think to myself, Where might I be putting unnecessary pressure on myself?” she continued in the video. “What are you overly stressed about that you just don’t need to be stressed about?”
@itsmarisajo Replying to @alysialovesmakeup This shift would’ve saved me so much stress & overwhelm back in my corporate days 😵💫 #bareminimummonday #bareminimummondays #worklifewellbeing #burnoutrecovery #wfhtips ♬ Theme From A Summer Place – Percy Faith
Mayes said in an interview with The New York Post that the philosophy has “completely overhauled” her relationship with work and hopes there are effects throughout the economy. “It’s more of an opportunity for people to start untethering themselves from hustle culture, little by little, until corporate America catches up,” she commented. “The tide is turning, and I feel like employees are tired of trading their well-being to perform well at work.”
The “Bare Minimum Monday” trend drew immediate comparisons to “Quiet Quitting,” an approach to work in which employees refuse to exert more effort than the bare minimum required by their job descriptions or resign from their positions without a two-week notice. The phenomena occur as prominent technology companies and other white-collar employers downsize staff to increase profitability: more than 94,000 workers have been dismissed from prominent technology firms in the first two months of 2023, according to a report from Crunchbase, even after companies in the sector dismissed some 140,000 positions last year.
The layoffs come as young employees at leading firms shared viral day-in-the-life videos on TikTok which showed them enjoying free perks while completing minimal work. Nicole Tsai, who previously released a series of videos boasting about the amenities-packed offices at Google, completed her video series with news that she had been laid off, while Riley Rojas, a project manager at Meta, posted videos of the company’s generous perks before the company reduced their payrolls at the behest of worried investors.
Many employees in the technology sector are also incensed as executives roll back virtual work policies established during the lockdown-induced recession. Thousands of employees at Amazon, which is now requiring staff members to report to the office at least three times per week, have started an internal Slack channel meant to challenge the end of fully remote work, while Starbucks employees petitioned management in the wake of a similar announcement.
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Employees generally prefer virtual work arrangements because of reduced commuting time and more flexibility, but costs for employers are often significant: 85% of managers believe the shift to hybrid work during the lockdown-induced recession has eroded confidence that employees are remaining productive, according to a study from Microsoft.