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Last Updated on October 22, 2019

Had a Bad Day? 6 Simple Steps to Rebound from It

Had a Bad Day? 6 Simple Steps to Rebound from It

So you had a bad day? A really terrible, awful, horrible, no good kind of day?

Feels awful, doesn’t it? We all have them. One of those days when nothing goes right. The entire day spirals out of your control and there is nothing you can do to stop it. The anxiety is closing in on you, and all your stress management skills have flown out the window. All you can do is look forward to bedtime, when the horrid day will be over.

Okay, so you had one. What to do the next time one of these bad days comes around? How can we rebound? How can we learn from this?

Here are six simple steps to fix a really bad day. Try these and watch your day turnaround.

1. Breathe

The first thing to do is to get back to as calm a state as you possibly can. Spend a few minutes in meditation once you are ready.

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Concentrate on breath alone, feel the tension slowly melt from your body. Feel the weight lift off of you. Let the thoughts come and let them go.

Once we are not operating in the purely negative space, we can take some proactive steps to rebound. We can view the day’s events with more objectivity once we are not deep within the emotions it spurred within us.

2. Know in Your Heart It’s Just a Bad Day, Not a Bad Life

Just because you had one horrible day, it doesn’t mean your entire life is all wrong.

Ask yourself, how often am I having these types of days? When was the last one and what triggered that day? Am I starting to question major life choices such as my job or my relationship? Or was this quite simply, and most likely, just one very bad day?

Most of us can truly know in our hearts this is simply just one bad day. Our life is much more than just this one day. The joyful days will be intermixed with painful ones. We know this logically, but it feels different to live it out loud. Give yourself a break for going negative in response.

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3. Take Personal Responsibility

What role did you play in getting yourself to this point? Usually when we react with irritation, anger or bitterness, it’s because we’ve allowed ourselves to be pushed beyond our boundaries. We’ve given up on time for self-care and self-love. We’ve said “yes” when we really meant “no”.

This choice to cut ourselves short puts us on edge, and at a disadvantage for our ability to handle these types of days. Take a hard look at some choices you’ve made recently that made you more prone to react instead of accept. Take steps to protect and preserve your whole health and soul health to be in the best position possible to face what life will throw your way.

4. Communicate with Compassion

What could have been done differently by others to avoid this situation? Did someone dump on you at work with short notice on a deadline? Did your partner not follow through on a promise? Who in your life played a role in the bad day? Can something be done differently to reduce the negative impact on you?

We can’t control the choices of others, but we can and should set our own boundaries. If there was a trust or responsibility violated by the boundary, that needs to be communicated. Perhaps even re-communicated. Open and honest, yet compassionate communication, is needed. How can you let this person know you would prefer this situation to be handled differently in the future?

Have that difficult conversation. You are worth it. And guess what? So are they.

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You can’t expect difference in the future unless you do different now. No one else feels how you feel, and this person may not even be aware of the wake they just created in your life. Gently and with love give them the information to be able to choose better next time.

5. Pick out the Bright Spots

Even on the worst of days, there are some bright spots. Go back over the day. What brought you even the tiniest glimmer of joy? A call from a friend? A smile from a stranger?

I had one of these days recently, where everything went wrong. I was disappointed in others, and mostly in myself for how I let the events get to me. But at the end of that night, driving home late, my teenage son reached out to hold my hand in the car and smiled at me. Joy. Love. Heart melts. Bright spot.

You have them even on the worst of days. Look for them and embrace them with gratitude in your heart.

6. Let It Go

Leave yesterday in yesterday. You did the best you could in the moment, and so did others. It happened. Get up the next day with joy and gratitude in your heart that you get yet another chance at a joy-filled day. Yesterday does not need to affect today unless you allow it.

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Learn and adjust from the lessons you explored above. Apply the lessons and move on. And the next time you have another very bad day….which we all will….REPEAT the above!

Before you know it, you may even be able to stop the next one midstream from taking over an entire day of your life.

More to Brighten up Your Day

Featured photo credit: NeONBRAND via unsplash.com

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Dawn Hafner

Dawn is a Practical Life Coach who offers concrete tools to help people implement life changes.

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Last Updated on December 3, 2019

10 Life Lessons You’d Better Learn Early on in Life

10 Life Lessons You’d Better Learn Early on in Life

There are so many lessons I wish I had learned while I was young enough to appreciate and apply them. The thing with wisdom, and often with life lessons in general, is that they’re learned in retrospect, long after we needed them. The good news is that other people can benefit from our experiences and the lessons we’ve learned.

Here’re 10 important life lessons you should learn early on:

1. Money Will Never Solve Your Real Problems

Money is a tool; a commodity that buys you necessities and some nice “wants,” but it is not the panacea to your problems.

There are a great many people who are living on very little, yet have wonderfully full and happy lives… and there are sadly a great many people are living on quite a lot, yet have terribly miserable lives.

Money can buy a nice home, a great car, fabulous shoes, even a bit of security and some creature comforts, but it cannot fix a broken relationship, or cure loneliness, and the “happiness” it brings is only fleeting and not the kind that really and truly matters. Happiness is not for sale. If you’re expecting the “stuff” you can buy to “make it better,” you will never be happy.

2. Pace Yourself

Often when we’re young, just beginning our adult journey we feel as though we have to do everything at once. We need to decide everything, plan out our lives, experience everything, get to the top, find true love, figure out our life’s purpose, and do it all at the same time.

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Slow down—don’t rush into things. Let your life unfold. Wait a bit to see where it takes you, and take time to weigh your options. Enjoy every bite of food, take time to look around you, let the other person finish their side of the conversation. Allow yourself time to think, to mull a bit.

Taking action is critical. Working towards your goals and making plans for the future is commendable and often very useful, but rushing full-speed ahead towards anything is a one-way ticket to burnout and a good way to miss your life as it passes you by.

3. You Can’t Please Everyone

“I don’t know the secret to success, but the secret to failure is trying to please everyone” – Bill Cosby.

You don’t need everyone to agree with you or even like you. It’s human nature to want to belong, to be liked, respected and valued, but not at the expense of your integrity and happiness. Other people cannot give you the validation you seek. That has to come from inside.

Speak up, stick to your guns, assert yourself when you need to, demand respect, stay true to your values.

4. Your Health Is Your Most Valuable Asset

Health is an invaluable treasure—always appreciate, nurture, and protect it. Good health is often wasted on the young before they have a chance to appreciate it for what it’s worth.

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We tend to take our good health for granted, because it’s just there. We don’t have to worry about it, so we don’t really pay attention to it… until we have to.

Heart disease, bone density, stroke, many cancers—the list of many largely preventable diseases is long, so take care of your health now, or you’ll regret it later on.

5. You Don’t Always Get What You Want

“Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.” – John Lennon

No matter how carefully you plan and how hard you work, sometimes things just don’t work out the way you want them to… and that’s okay.

We have all of these expectations; predetermined visions of what our “ideal” life will look like, but all too often, that’s not the reality of the life we end up with. Sometimes our dreams fail and sometimes we just change our minds mid-course. Sometimes we have to flop to find the right course and sometimes we just have to try a few things before we find the right direction.

6. It’s Not All About You

You are not the epicenter of the universe. It’s very difficult to view the world from a perspective outside of your own, since we are always so focused on what’s happening in our own lives. What do I have to do today? What will this mean for me, for my career, for my life? What do I want?

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It’s normal to be intensely aware of everything that’s going on in your own life, but you need to pay as much attention to what’s happening around you, and how things affect other people in the world as you do to your own life. It helps to keep things in perspective.

7. There’s No Shame in Not Knowing

No one has it all figured out. Nobody has all the answers. There’s no shame in saying “I don’t know.” Pretending to be perfect doesn’t make you perfect. It just makes you neurotic to keep up the pretense of manufactured perfection.

We have this idea that there is some kind of stigma or shame in admitting our limitations or uncertainly, but we can’t possibly know everything. We all make mistakes and mess up occasionally. We learn as we go, that’s life.

Besides—nobody likes a know-it-all. A little vulnerability makes you human and oh so much more relatable.

8. Love Is More Than a Feeling; It’s a Choice

That burst of initial exhilaration, pulse quickening love and passion does not last long. But that doesn’t mean long-lasting love is not possible.

Love is not just a feeling; it’s a choice that you make every day. We have to choose to let annoyances pass, to forgive, to be kind, to respect, to support, to be faithful.

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Relationships take work. Sometimes it’s easy and sometimes it’s incredibly hard. It is up to us to choose how we want to act, think and speak in a relationship.

9. Perspective Is a Beautiful Thing

Typically, when we’re worried or upset, it’s because we’ve lost perspective. Everything that is happening in our lives seems so big, so important, so do or die, but in the grand picture, this single hiccup often means next to nothing.

The fight we’re having, the job we didn’t get, the real or imagined slight, the unexpected need to shift course, the thing we wanted, but didn’t get. Most of it won’t matter 20, 30, 40 years from now. It’s hard to see long term when all you know is short term, but unless it’s life-threatening, let it go, and move on.

10. Don’t Take Anything for Granted

We often don’t appreciate what we have until it’s gone: that includes your health, your family and friends, your job, the money you have or think you will have tomorrow.

When you’re young, it seems that your parents will always be there, but they won’t. You think you have plenty of time to get back in touch with your old friends or spend time with new ones, but you don’t. You have the money to spend, or you think you’ll have it next month, but you might not.

Nothing in your life is not guaranteed to be there tomorrow, including those you love.

This is a hard life lesson to learn, but it may be the most important of all: Life can change in an instant. Make sure you appreciate what you have, while you still have it.

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Featured photo credit: Ben Eaton via unsplash.com

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