A bad day is no measure of what is in your heart: your determination, your dreams, your will to succeed. Sometimes, a mixture of circumstances and interactions just leave us feeling a bit overwhelmed. Thats okay. Here are a few tips on how to deal with a bad day. I hope they will help to tide you over until you are feeling better:
Give yourself permission to have a bad day
I’m a classic optimist (most of the time). When I am feeling good, I can always look at the bright side. That doesn’t mean that I don’t experience pain or frustration. In those times, it helps to be compassionate and try to listen to myself. By understanding what is causing these feelings, I can do something to address them. Stepping away from work for a moment, controlling the amount of information that is flowing in to me, or taking time to talk to a supportive friend are the strategies that often help me. But sometimes, I just need some time to let the feelings ride.
Don’t overpersonalize what you are feeling
Chances are, you aren’t the only person who has dealt with the circumstances you are facing. There are likely thousands, if not millions, of people on the planet who are experiencing the same thing you are. I often will do an online search for whatever I am feeling, and am surprised by the amount of ‘how to’ guides and supportive articles that pop up. I am comforted when I remember that I am not the only one struggling to figure things out. You are not alone.
Give yourself a mental break
You don’t have to figure out all the problems in your world today. Don’t let a deadline, delay, disappointment, or denial terrify you (why do so many negative words start with a ‘d’?). You can try switching to another task, and doing something that will help you feel better about yourself. I like to find an easy ‘win’, something I am confident I can complete. This may help you realize what is (or isn’t) under your control. When you return to the task at hand, you can try approaching it from a different angle.
Sometimes you just need time to breathe. You may need to sit in your situation for a minute and get your bearings. Take care of yourself by practicing mindfulness. Listening to what is going on inside of you and respond compassionately. This will put you in the right frame of mind to decide (there! a powerful ‘d’ word!) what you are going to do next.
“Every person needs to take one day away. A day in which one consciously separates the past from the future. Jobs, family, employers, and friends can exist one day without any one of us, and if our egos permit us to confess, they could exist eternally in our absence. Each person deserves a day away in which no problems are confronted, no solutions searched for. Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares which will not withdraw from us.”
–Maya Angelou, Wouldn’t Take Nothing for my Journey Now
Image courtesy of Boaz Yiftach at freedigitalphotos.net
What do you do to take care of yourself when you are having a bad day?