How do you survive the bad days?
Some days are harder than others. Some days you land the perfect contract at work and come home to your boyfriend cooking you a delicious dinner. Other days you lose a freelance gig and have no time to eat anything but that fast food that you always promised yourself you wouldn’t eat.
Some days you go to the nail salon with your girls and end the day cuddled up on the couch watching your favorite chick flick. Other days you spend all day running tedious errands, only to find out you missed the most important one at the end of the day.
Life is difficult, and often times filled with incredible ups and downs. You can have the best of days, and then one person makes one small comment, and you find yourself questioning why you even got out of bed that morning.
The thing is, like all things, if we didn’t experience the bad or even just the mundane, then would we truly appreciate the good days for what they are? Probably not.
I think that everyone experiences ups and downs. One of my new favorite songs is by Hillsong Young & Free.
The lyrics go:
Should I dance on the heights
Or make my bed among the depths
Your mercy waits at every end
Like You planned it from the start
In Ecclesiastes, King Solomon wrote: “To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven: . . . a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance” (3:1-4).
David, who was King Solomon’s dad, was called “a man after [God’s] own heart” (1 Sam. 13:14; Acts 13:22), yet David’s life was the ultimate picture of up’s and downs.
He lost his son Absalom and went through a season of immense sadness (2 Sam. 18:33). He wrote great songs of praise (Ps. 126:1-3), and later danced for the Lord when the ark was brought to Jerusalem (2 Sam. 6:12-15).
The thing is we will experience the same sort of life that David did. We will hit highs, and succumb to lows, but what we do know and can cling to, is that God will carry us through it all.
Whenever I am experiencing a low in life, I first take it to God. I dive into the Word and focus on His truth!
Second, I keep my focus on when having a bad day or experiencing bad moods is the sole fact that there will be better days. Heck, there will be better moments of the day.
So you are probably saying, I get it! We all have off days, but how do we survive the bad days?
5 Things To Focus On When Experiencing A Bad Day:
1. Today is only a day. It is fleeting, it will pass, and you will probably forget it soon.
2. Focus on the good. There are things that are going right in your life too, you are just choosing to focus on the bad. List 5 positive things that are happening in your life right now.
3. Change your story. Instead of playing a victim card, take responsibility for what happened. After taking responsibility, make an action plan to turn things around. Nothing good comes from wallowing in sorrows.
4. Everyone has bad days. Comparison is usually not my go-to, but on bad days I have to remind myself that everyone’s lives are not as they look on Instagram. Even the Instagram model with 3 million followers has bad days.
5. It get’s better.
5 Ways To Turn A Bad Day Around:
1. Go for a walk. Nature is good for our health, trees reduce stress. Researchers in Japan encourage people to “forrest bath,” which is simply walking in the woods. They point out it lowers your stress significantly compared to taking a walk in a city. Pick yourself up, go outside, and enjoy a walk.
You don’t have to walk fast, nor do you need to get a workout out of it; just enjoy yourself. This is a good time to practice mindfulness, to be aware of the present, and the things around you. It will give you time to just be.
2. Meditate on the good. I love meditation. I have been a big believer in the practice for a couple years now. I struggled with anxiety throughout high school and it wasn’t until I was in college that I discovered the world of meditation. Meditation is a practice that falls under mindfulness, a reminder to be aware of yourself and your surrounding and being grounded in the present. It’s also a good way to focus on prayer.
3. Treat yourself. Do something you love, eat something you love, or see someone you love. Whatever you do, make sure it comes from a place of love. Nothing like a good old coffee date with your best friend to get your endorphins flowing.
4. Pray things through. Prayer is good for every situation in life. The good, the bad, the ugly, prayer is the best form of communication. Think about it, you’re talking to the one person who cares about you more than anyone else in the world. Pray through your triumphs, your struggles, your failures, your wins: it’s always a solution.
5. Make a list of 10 things you are grateful for. This can be as silly as “coffee” or as serious as “my relationship with my mom.” Just make a list that will remind you of the good that surrounds you. This is actually a good daily practice. Try adding it to the beginning of your day, and see how your attitude changes.
I know these lists are not perfect, and that there is so much more to discuss regarding the topic of bad days. I know sometimes it feels nearly impossible to fix your mood or look at things from a different perspective, but these are just some examples of how you can survive the bad days and the days that feel a bit too dreary to handle.
P.S. One of my favorite ways to survive the bad days is to practice self-care. You can find my post about self-care here: “8 Ways To Practice Self-Care That Won’t Break The Bank.”