We all know this feeling, when nothing seems to be going our way and when every effort is met with the most stubborn resistance. We all have banged our head on the proverbial wall (or maybe, the table or piano, like Don Music on Sesame Street).
Life is unfair and everybody has it better than oneself.
We all said (or at least thought) it before.
The thing is, how do you pick yourself up and keep going?
Here are some things that work for me:
1) Make time for yourself. Even if it is 15 minutes during your lunch break or after work. Do something that makes you feel good. Go for a walk. Read a book. Knit. Stitch. Crochet.
2) Take a bubble bath. I don’t know about you, but I am not a person who usually takes the time to take a hot bath (especially in the summer, ha!), but if you need some time to yourself, some time to relax, there is nothing better than that (especially now in the fall and winter). Light some candles. Read a good book and really dive into the story. Let your mind float. Close your eyes and try to concentrate on the moment.
3) Talk to a friend. Something that always, always pulls me out of a rut is talking to my sister or a close friend. There is nothing more therapeutic (and cathartic) than spilling your guts and frustration to someone who knows you and loves you. It really helps to gain some new perspective and fresh energy to keep going.
4) Write it all down in your journal. Be brutally honest with yourself. Sometimes seeing your issue in ink on paper makes your realize that hardly anything is really worth losing your head over.
5) Work out. I know you probably think that working out is the last thing you want to do when you’re feeling low, but working out actually does little wonders to you. (Remember, all those endorphins that are released during a workout? You’ll feel so much better afterward – not just in regards to what’s going on with you, but also because you kicked your own butt and went running! Double win!)
6) Treat yourself. We all know it, retail therapy works for the most of us (at least temporarily). The trick is to not mindlessly spend money on things that you don’t need or even want, but pick out one item – and it can – or even should – be something small – that will really brighten your day. For me, that can be a pretty mug at the thrift store (for $0.49), a couple of $1-stamps at Michaels or just an indulgent drink at Starbucks. (Do I hear, salted caramel topped latte, anyone?)
7) Watch mindless TV. I know, many of you do that anyway (just kidding!)… but I don’t watch much TV during the week, besides the news, and it’s a real treat for me to just settle into the chair and watch some silly shows for a couple of hours. It easily takes my mind of anything.
8) Consciously admit to yourself that you feel miserable and work through the feelings. I think the biggest mistake that people often make is to not acknowledge their feelings. Sure, life doesn’t stop just because you’re having a bad day and there are still commitments and duties that need to be taken care of, but that does not mean that you should simply ignore your emotions and carry on as if everything is fine. Obviously we sometimes have to grit our teeth and just keep going, but not to the point where everything has been bottled up inside you for so long that you don’t even remember where to start to fix it.
What are your coping strategies when you are having a bad day?
What keeps you going?
Remember: every day is a new day!