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Last Updated on September 23, 2020

5 Ways to Turn Around a Bad Day at Work

5 Ways to Turn Around a Bad Day at Work

It’s estimated that the average person spends 90,000 hours of their life working.[1] A huge portion of our life is spent on the job. No matter how you slice it, that means we’re all bound to have a bad day at work every once in a while.

Between tight deadlines, challenging customers, and conflicting personalities at work, there’s no shortage of potential problems to dampen our day. But how we choose to navigate those inevitable bad days can define our productivity, success, and fulfillment at work.

In fact, according to Shawn Achor, author of The Happiness Advantage, “studies show that when you’re positive, you’re 31% more productive, you’re 40% more likely to receive a promotion, you have 23% fewer health-related effects from stress, and your creativity rates triple.”[2]

So, how do you turn a bad workday around and reap all of these amazing benefits? Try these five tips.

1. Stop What You’re Doing and Take a Walk

No matter how stressed or pressed for time you are, you won’t solve the bad day problem in your current mindset. So, take even five minutes to shake things up by changing your location and moving your body. This will help you overcome a bad day at work.

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When you remove yourself from the pressure of the moment and give yourself a new setting, it often creates just enough psychological space to gain a new perspective on the situation. Plus, exercise increases our brain’s production of the neurotransmitter dopamine, which helps us to feel motivated and happy and can shift your mood entirely.[3]

2. Figure Out What’s Really Bothering You

The trouble with bad days is it can feel like everything is going wrong and, therefore, be impossible to take specific action to improve it. So, rather than get caught up in your emotional spiral, get right to the root of the problem: What’s really bothering you?

Are you upset about something at home that’s transferring over to your work life? Are you annoyed with a colleague or client? Are you frustrated with your work? Are you anxious about a deadline?

Answering these questions allows you to turn around a bad day at work. When you can disentangle the emotional web and pinpoint exactly what the most pressing underlying problem is, you’re empowered to take clear, specific action on that problem.

It’s worth taking just a few minutes to pause and think critically or journal about what’s getting to you so that you can solve it once and for all.

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3. Put Things Into Perspective

Bad days come and go, but if you’re staying at a job, there must be a reason. To connect back in with the deeper why.

Do you love helping your clients and customers? Do you love your income to support your family? Can you identify any place where you’ve made someone’s life better through your work?

The truth is, no matter how much we love our jobs, there are just going to be some less glamorous aspects and—quite frankly—bad days. But it’s a lot easier to navigate those periodic hiccups when we can put them back into perspective and remember our bigger why for doing this work.

4. Talk It Out and Get Support

The only thing worse than a bad day is feeling like you’re all alone in the misery. To shift out of it, you’ve got to get some support.

If it’s appropriate, chat about your situation with colleagues. If not, step outside for a quick text or phone call with a friend or loved one to vent about your day. It’s helpful to speak your feelings out loud and get some outside perspective. The trick, though, is to make sure that you don’t fall down the rabbit hole of commiseration and making yourself more upset.[4]

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So, to keep it a healthy venting session, make sure to keep things focused on your feelings (as opposed to what others did to you) and what actionable steps you can take in the future. And that support doesn’t need to be limited to the bad day. If it’s a long-standing issue, it can be invaluable to get support from a mental health professional or, if appropriate, human resources at work to prevent further bad days.

5. Listen to Some Background Music

Music has a profound impact on our emotional state.[5] Upbeat music can make us happier, sad music can make us sadder—and everything in between. In fact, research finds that upbeat music can call back happy memories, which can take you out of this bad day and back to those moments.[6]

So, if you’re feeling a little down at work, put on some of your favorite music to quickly shift your mood and snap out of it.

There is a caveat, though. If you’re wanting to think critically, it’s best to stick to music you’re already familiar with or music without lyrics, so you aren’t getting too caught up in it. But if you’re doing repetitive work like data entry, any music can make you more efficient.[7]

So, the next time you’re feeling a bit down on work, take a moment to pump the jams.

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The Bottom Line

With all of the time we spend working, bad days are inevitable. Even the most prepared of us can’t prevent every challenge we’ll face. So, we need tools to pull us out of the misery and back into happiness, fulfillment, and productivity.

With a few bad day “first-aid tips” up our sleeves, we can take on anything the workday throws at us.

More Tips to Overcome a Bad Day at Work

Featured photo credit: Avel Chuklanov via unsplash.com

Reference

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Mike Iamele

Mike Iamele is a writer, life purpose expert, and brand strategist who helps people map their sensitivities to discover their purpose.

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Last Updated on November 3, 2020

How to Reinvent Yourself and Change Your Life for the Better

How to Reinvent Yourself and Change Your Life for the Better

There will always be times in your life when you feel stuck and may need to learn how to reinvent yourself. This could come when you experience a big change, such as leaving your job, ending a relationship, moving to a new home, or losing a loved one. If you are going through a major shift in your life, you may have to find new ways of thinking or doing things, or risk failing to reach your full potential.

“When something bad happens, you have three choices. You can let it define you, let it destroy you, or you can let it strengthen you.” -Dr. Seuss

Many people who dared to leave their old, unhappy lives enabled themselves to pursue their passions and find a renewed zest for living. You can also achieve the same if you take a leap of faith and make things happen for yourself.

To help you always be at your best wherever you may be in your personal life, here are some practical tips on how to reinvent yourself.

The Reinvention Checklist

Before embarking on a journey of self-reinvention, professionally and personally, you need to make sure that you have everything that you need to make the trip bump-proof. These things include:

Resilience

Problems and obstacles are guaranteed to happen. Some of them will be difficult and may knock you off course; the important thing, however, is that you learn from these difficulties, never lose focus, and always get back up. This requires building resilience to get through the tough times.

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Support

Humans are social beings. Although it is important that you learn to rely on yourself when facing any challenge, it is also important to have a support team that you can lean on to give you a boost when things get too tough and to correct you when you’re making mistakes.

The key is to find the right balance between independence and dependence. Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable and share the difficulties you’re facing. When you open up, you’ll find the people who are really going to be there for you.

Self-Care

During the process of learning how to reinvent yourself, you will have to pull yourself away from your old comfort zones, habits, roles, and self-perceptions. This can be difficult and cause you to question your self-worth, so it’s important to engage in self-care to maintain a positive outlook and keep your mind and body healthy. Self-care can include:

  • Participating in a hobby you enjoy
  • Spending time with your support system
  • Taking some time to walk in nature
  • Practicing loving-kindness meditation

Find what works for you and what helps you feel like your true self.

How to Reinvent Yourself

Once you’re sure that you’re equipped with all the tools in the self-reinvention checklist, you can begin your journey of learning how to reinvent yourself.

1. Discover Your Strengths

This step provides valuable information on how you deal with certain situations. If you have this information, you will be able to manage difficulties more efficiently.

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To find out what your strengths are, you can ask your friends and colleagues for feedback, engage in self-reflection, or try these 10 Ways to Find Your Own Personal Strengths.

2. Plan

This step requires you to look at your emotional, psychological, and financial status so that you can develop plans that are realistic and practical.

It’s okay to create a vision and have ambitious dreams, but your plans have to be realistic. Making use of SMART goals can help you plan your life better.

You can also consult your mentor or life coach for practical tips and advice.

Ultimately, you’ll want to create specific long-term and short-term goals that you can create milestones for. By doing this, you’ll lay out a specific roadmap to your reinvented self.

3. Try Things Out

Sometimes, we don’t know if solutions actually work until we try them out. This is why it’s important to experiment whenever possible, especially if you’re dealing with a career change. You may need to simply experiment in order to find the things you like.

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This can be the same with hobbies. If you’re not sure what you would like doing, accept invitations from friends to join them in their favorite sport or take a class, like pottery or photography.

By seeing what’s out there in any area of your life, you’ll have a better chance of finding the things you enjoy and the goals you want to create.

4. Manage Your Finances Well

Changes may require a bit of money. If you’re shifting to a new career, you may have to pay for training. If you’re going through a tough divorce or having a hard time dealing with the death of a loved one, you may have to pay for therapy. If you’re moving to a new home, you’ll definitely have extra expenses to pay.

All of these things are possible, but it will require a bit of money savviness as you learn how to reinvent yourself. If you have that cushion, you’ll feel more comfortable straying from your current path to try new things[1].

Ways to manage your money when you want to reinvent yourself

    If you feel like this is an area of weakness for you, check out this article for some tips to improve your money management skills.

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    5. Muster Your Courage

    Fears and self-doubt may arise when you encounter difficulties and setbacks. Sometimes, they may also come when you’re taking risks. You have to manage these negative emotions well and not allow them to discourage you. Tap into your courage and try doing at least one new thing each week to develop it.

    Learn how to deal with your self-doubts to move forward in this article: How Self Doubt Keeps You Stuck (And How to Overcome It)

    6. Use Your Support Group

    As stated above, you need to build a strong support group before you even start the process of reinventing yourself. Your group will keep you from taking wrong turns and encourage you when you get too weighed down by problems. Don’t be afraid to call friends or family, or even ask them out for coffee if you need to vent about the current difficulties you’re facing.

    7. Remind Yourself of Your Commitment Every Day

    Write your goals on different-sized cards and scatter them at home and at work in places where you can easily see them. This way, you will constantly be reminded of where you want to be. Remember, writing down your goals helps them stick[2].

    8. Accept Failure, Learn, and Resume Your Journey

    Failing is normal, especially when we’re trying out something new. When you fail, simply recognize it, learn from it, and move on.

    Failure, in the end, is the best way to learn what does and doesn’t work, and you simply won’t be able to learn how to reinvent yourself if you don’t accept the inevitable failures that await you.

    Final Thoughts

    If you truly want to learn how to reinvent yourself and live the life you desire, take the advice above and start taking action. It will take time, patience, and plenty of effort to make the change you want happen, but it will be all worth it.

    More Tips on How to Reinvent Yourself

    Featured photo credit: Gabrielle Henderson via unsplash.com

    Reference

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