Everybody sometimes has a bad day. It may be a combination of minor things like being late for work or spilling your coffee on your favourite shirt. Or it may be something major like getting rear ended or performing poorly during a presentation at work. Regardless of the reason, there are simple things you can do to improve your mood and outlook when your day isn’t going well.
A full meditation session isn’t necessary. Just take 5 minutes to go somewhere quietly and breathe deeply while clearing your mind. This can slow the heart rate and lower blood pressure. It will also help you to focus on the present.
Stress and chaos often produce feelings of insecurity and helplessness. Take stock of what has happened and make an action plan how you will deal with it. Commit to being confident and proactive in responding to problems. Remember, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
Just grin and bear it. Physically smiling can actually influence our physical state by reducing the body’s stress response. By simply smiling and thinking happy thoughts, we can improve our mood. It also helps us to connect with others, which will improve our mood.
Being upset only gets worse if we isolate ourselves while mulling over our problems. One of the best tools for handling stress is your social network. Psychological research has shown that talking, even writing about problems reduces tension and stress.
Freud famously pointed out that humour is a healthy way of coping with life stress. Even doctors will point out that a good laugh stimulates the organs, soothes tension and relieves the stress response.
Avoid sitting around and obsessing with your problems. This will only worsen the situation. If you can, take a brisk walk or even better, get some vigorous exercise.
Get organised and be productive. Focus on the here and now and take care of easy, minor tasks. Doing so will give you a sense of accomplishment.
Avoid negative thoughts like “nothing ever goes right for me” or “this always happens.” Do not blame yourself. Instead, keep a positive attitude and accept what has happened.
Complaining can’t change anything. In fact, the only thing that will change is your mood and attitude will become more negative. Focus your pent up frustration on something positive like tackling a big project or cleaning your workspace.
Think of this as your personal Zen mantra. Put your temporary problems into perspective and realise that “this too shall pass.”
Helping others is an excellent way to feel better. By showing compassion you can improve your mood and bond with someone else.
In conclusion, there are many ways to make yourself feel better when your day isn’t going well. There are time tested social, physical and psychological techniques that will reduce stress and help you cope with stress.