Have you ever noticed how the way you start your day can have an impact on how you feel the rest of the day? Like sleeping poorly, waking up grumpy, and acting out to your friends or family over something small. Or you might have made a TO-DO list with all types of activities you wanted to do the next day, but at 03:00 p.m. you notice that you haven’t done any of them, and this might let you feel as if the day is slipping by.
‘Challenges are what makes life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful’
– Joshua J. Marine
Every now and then I have one of these experiences and it really makes me feel as if I am failing that day. The thing is, I’ve now come to the believe that a day can never go to waste. At least not if you change your view on it. If during a day everything goes according to plan we (or at least I) consider that to be a great day. If things don’t work out, we tend to think of that day as a bad day. However, if you change your mindset, there is always gold to be found in every situation. Even in the ‘bad’ ones.
I think it is completely normal to have days that you label as good or bad. I think that the days just occur and we label them as good or bad. You see, the experience will happen and the impact of the exeprience lies in the label. Two persons having the same experience might label it completely different. One person might feel relieved not being focused on all the activities he/she might need to get done that day, while the other might experience it as him/her being unproductive.
If you can agree with me that what you experience throughout the day is good or bad because you label it as such, you might want to get a better understanding of why it is that you label the day as good or bad. When I am having a bad day I know that there are challenges and when I encounter these challenges I see opportunities for myself to grow.
‘If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change’
– Wayne Dyer
I previously wrote an article on by changing how we look at things we are able to change the things we look at. A big factor is the questions we ask ourselves when things don’t go the way we want them to. It is as if the world is working against us and we tend to ask ourselves ‘why is this happening to me?’. Another type of question I believe is more efficient and proactive. One that sounds like: ‘what can I do to overcome this, and how can I grow from it?’
When I have become aware that I am having a ‘bad’ day or things aren’t going as I would have liked, I have a couple of things that I can do that work for me to have a fresh start. These methods help me to shift my perspective and take a step back. Instead of being dragged along by a negative feeling, I can pause myself for a moment and realize that things aren’t as bad as they seem.
Meditation: I like to meditate when I find myself being stressed or overwhelmed. There are many things that meditation can bring you. For me it brings me clarity and inner peace. There are many types of meditations that you can do. Even on websites such as Youtube, you can find a whole reportoire of different forms of meditation. You can start with guided meditations or just try it yourself and focus on your breathing for example.
Visualisation: this one is one of my favorites. I have a couple of visualisation exercises that I have created myself or found on the internet and literature. Visualisation is usually done via a meditation, but it is not necessary. I highly recommend to look this up if you aren’t familiar with it. Fun fact: it has potential health benefits, improves atheletic performance, and reduces depression and anxiety symptoms.
Reflection: This is something I recommend everybody to do if you want to learn from yourself and grow. The purpose of reflection is to get a better and deeper understanding of ourselves and our behaviour. So if you are experiencing a ‘bad’ day, you can get to know why that is and what you can do to make it a ‘good’ one.
Workout: To workout and do physical training is something I love to do. It has so many benefits, not just for your physical health, but also your mental health, emotional health and spiritual health. Sometimes I take a moment to do some exercise, which makes me feel good about myself and this then stimulates me to change my mindset and make the most of that day. It also makes me feel as if I have accomplished something that day.
I hope that these methods are helpful for you as well. If you have your own methods, please share them! In the end we can all learn from each other.