Having a rough day? I feel ya – it happens to the best of us. Sometimes it can feel like there’s no light at the end of the tunnel, so here’s 10 ways to brighten a bad day, and get you over that hump.
1. Hug a pet
This goes without saying. Squish that little ball of unjudging fluff, and take a moment to think of nothing but their weight in your arms and the texture of their coat. Breathe. Don’t have a pet? Send an SOS text to a friend to see if you can borrow theirs, or head to your local dog park to mooch off a stranger (remember to ask permission to pat first).
2. Sit somewhere green
But don’t just take my word for it. Recent studies have shown that taking yourself off to a nice little green spot can reduce stress, lower your blood pressure, and even make you a kinder person.
3. Listen to a favourite upbeat track from when you were a kid
There’s something about music that can work as an instant mood switch. I challenge you to get through Don’t Stop Me Now or Backstreet’s Back without feeling a little bit better. Bonus points if you get that heart-rate pumping with appropriate dance moves.
4. Do something nice for someone else
Sometimes paying it forward with a random act of kindness can be the little bump you need to help the sun come out from behind those sh*tty clouds. Scatter compliments like confetti or buy a coffee for the person behind you. Act like a person having the sort of day you wish you were having, and you might find out that you become them.
Frequently, having a bad day can just be a symptom of feeling stressed, tired, or over-committed. Your brain is like a sprinter trying to compete in a marathon, and it’s just….had….enough. Meditation can function like hitting restart on your computer, giving it the little boost it needs to clear out and start again. If you’re new to meditation, I use Headspace, but I’ve also heard great things about Calm and Insight Timer
6. Call a friend and ask them to tell you the worst joke they can think of
This is urgent, a life-or-death situation – the worst joke they can think of. Aaaand….go.
7. Sit with a hot drink and do nothing for three minutes
If you’re not the meditating type, or you don’t feel comfortable meditating wherever you are, take a moment to sit quietly with a hot drink. Pretend you’re on a spa day (or a forest retreat), and that nothing can touch you for those three minutes. Breathe. Relax. Reset. You deserve it.
8. Go for a run
I know, this one might not feel like it’s going to make anything better, but get that heart rate pumping and you can’t help but feel a little bit better. And even if you don’t, you just went for a run! So you’ve achieved something with your day, good for you.
9. Adopt a plant
Because this. I will lavish these glorious beauties with love and all will be well.
10. Take a moment to be grateful
No matter how bad things may seem today (and I just shattered my favourite mug and spilled sour yogurt all over my pants, so they seem pretty bad) – there’s still so many things that you probably have to be grateful for. It may be hard when the going is rough, but taking a moment to be grateful for all the things in your life that are going well might be just the boost you need to get through the day.