Simple and Surefire Ways to Turn Your Awful Day Around Quickly
Wild guess, you’re probably here because you’re having a bad day, right?
(Did I win? What prize do I get?!)
There is no doubt about it; every single person deals with bad days from time to time. How you got here, well, there are a million reasons (locked yourself out of your car, overslept your alarm, your waterproof mascara wasn’t really waterproof) that may have kickstarted a gloriously lousy day.
But now you are sick of feeling crappy and you want to get out of your funk? Well, I have listed a ton of different tips to improve your bad day. Whether you have a bad day at home, work, or school, hopefully, you can find a few helpful ideas to get you through your funk.
95 Easy Ways To Deal with a Bad Day
Starting to improve a bad day often involve one of these methods:
-Distractions: Your bad day is a result of a mindset you are stuck in and you need something to help jolt you out of your toxic mindset.
-Removals: Something in your environment causes you to develop a toxic mindset or negative thoughts about yourself, which needs to be removed.
-Reminders: You use mindfulness techniques and strategies to help you feel better about yourself.
You’ll find over 90 different ideas that use one (or possibly, more!) of these strategies to help you get through your tough day.
Try one. Try five. Do two at once (I personally love listening to audiobooks while taking long walks!). Remember what works for the future and don’t pressure yourself if something you try fails.
Get outside the house
If you are at home and your bad mood started at home, generally staying at home isn’t the best place to start fixing your mood. Here are some useful ideas to improve your mood that involve getting out of the house.
- Go for a long drive
- Go for a walk
- Ride your bike
- Sit outdoors
- Go to the gym
- Visit your favorite store
- Browse around a thrift store
- Go see a movie in a theater
- Eat at your favorite restaurant
- Watch the clouds go by
- Stand in the rain
Write it out
Sometimes keeping your feelings locked inside can make them fester and get worse. Unfortunately, we don’t always have people readily available to talk it out. That is where pen and paper turn into magic. Whether you have a dedicated notebook for journaling or just a legal pad, write or doodle your thoughts and feelings.
- Stream of consciousness writing in your journal
- List 10 things that you are grateful for
- Write a list of everything you love about yourself
- Jot down your wins of the day (or week!)
- Brain dump
- Doodle mindlessly on paper
However, if you do have somebody available to chat (human or pet), talking out a bad day can quickly improve your mood.
- Call a friend
- Write a letter
- Play with your pet
- Snuggle your pet
- Vent to somebody you trust
Engaging in your spirituality practices can be a wonderful way to express and accept your emotions when you’re having a crappy day. Here are lots of different ways to tap into your spirituality to help your bad day get better.
- Say mood-lifting affirmations
- Guided meditations
- Read a bible verse (or a verse from the Quran or other religious texts)
- Engage in some simple yoga
- Try a Reiki session
- Tarot reading
- Talk with your spiritual leader
Feel Your Emotions
Emotion avoidance is a thing. For some, it works. For others (like myself), the longer I try to avoid an inevitable emotion coming on… the worse my day usually gets.
When you’re having a bad day, avoiding isn’t always bad, especially if you’re brain is downward spiraling down tangents you know aren’t true. But if your bad day is linked to a specific event that really did make you feel crappy, I believe it is also important to identify and express how you feel.
- Punch a pillow
- Set a timer to wallow in your thoughts/feelings for 10 minutes
- Accept your emotions as normal and natural
- Identify the specific emotions you are feeling
- Rate your emotional pain on a scale of 0-10
Quick note: consider pairing one of these emotional expressions with another activity, such as journaling or praying. Additionally, emotional work can be very tiring, so some people may have better luck with a distracting activity after completing one of these suggestions.
I fully believe we make bad days so much worse because we totally hyperfocus on what we are thinking and feeling.
Why not do something that will help get your brain on another tangent? Here are some of my favorite ways to keep my brain busy when I’m feeling lousy.
- Watch a movie or television show
- Watch somebody doing something stupid on Youtube
- Play a video game
- Learn a new skill
- Look at old photos or videos on your phone
- Play Candy Crush or another game on your phone
- Get inspired down the Pinterest rabbit hole
Engage in your hobbies
Hobbies are amazing.
Not only are they fun and personally enjoyable, but they can also serve as an amazing distraction to kill off even the worst of days.
Whether your favorite things to do are on this list (or not!), do them! You’ll feel so much better.
- Do a puzzle
- Color in a coloring book
- Knit something for yourself
- Bake your favorite treat
- Cook your favorite meal
- Do a craft
- Do a Sudoku or a wordfind
- Play solitaire
- Listen to music
- Listen to an audiobook
- Read a book
- Read jokes online
- Find solace in quotes about bad days
What feels better than doing something nice for yourself?
That was a rhetorical question.
Here are some ideas to help you get your mind off your crappy day and onto something much more enjoyable for your mind and body.
- Take a long hot shower
- Put on makeup
- Take a bubble bath
- Take a nap
- Paint your nails
- Get a massage
- Wear comfortable clothing
- Diffuse your favorite essential oils
- Lay under a weighted blanket
- Drink fancy tea or coffee
Sometimes I find technology is a massive bad mood amplifier. I mean, what makes a bad day worse than seeing the people you love having a good day? And not because you’re actually jealous or malicious, either (most of the time), but sometimes it can just make a bad day worse. Or you get ‘well intentioned’, yet ‘bad advice’ from your mother-in-law. Blech.
Even worse yet, social media can show you all the people who just totally set you off, too. Stupid people, racist/sexist/ableist/etc comments, annoying DMs, and more can just feed a bad moment into a full-blown bad day.
If this is happening, here are some tips to help you turn your bad day into a hopefully better day with your technology.
- Log off social media
- Delete apps off your phone
- Unplug from technology
- Deactivate Facebook
- Unfriend/delete/block people who make you feel bad on social media
Quick note: Making changes on social media is a personal decision and it is up to you whether you do this temporarily or permanently. Be aware of how the changes affect your mood, drive, and energy and make adjustments as you see necessary.
For those who find cleaning to be fun and relaxing (by the way, if you are one of these people please teach me your secrets!), finding a few things to clean around the house can serve as an excellent distraction. Plus, bonus, when you’re done your house is cleaner! That may serve as an excellent guide to start improving your day.
(Though, if you’re like me and hate cleaning, you don’t have to do these things!)
- Declutter your closet
- Make your bed
- Tidy your tables/countertops
- Pull weeds
- Mow the lawn
Fixing a Bad Day When Short on Time
I won’t lie- many of these tips often involve at least 20 minutes of your time (if not more) to complete. But if you’re in the middle of a work meeting or in between classes at school, you may not have time to whip out your phone for a good game of Candy Crush. A nap isn’t possible either (darn!).
Here are a few helpful things to try if you’re having a bad day and you are short on time.
- Take 5-10 deep breaths
- Splash cold water on your face
- Change your location (even briefly!)
- Drink a glass of water
- Count to 100
- Text a friend
- Look at cat pictures
Things To Remember When Having a Crappy Day
Remember how I said earlier that it’s easy to get on a negative spiral when you’re having a bad day?
- Everybody has a bad day sometimes, this is normal
- Tomorrow will probably be better
- It’s ok if you didn’t do anything on this list
- It is a bad day, not a bad life
- It’s OK not to feel OK
- Forgive yourself
- Laughing at yourself can do wonders
- You probably won’t even remember this day in a year
Ultimately, if there is one thing I want you to drill in your head for future bad days, it’s this:
“It’s OK to have a bad day”
How To Make a Bad Day Worse
Nobody generally wants to hear this advice, so this is why I’m tacking it onto the end of this article. Ultimately, you will do you, and I cannot stop you. That said, there are some actions that can actually make a bad day more challenging in general.
And, just to add, it’s not because any one of these behaviors is bad in moderation. But I’ve found through my own personal experiences that these actions generally make you feel worse after engaging in them.
- Drinking excess alcohol
- Binging on junk food
- Make big decisions
- Blaming other people for your bad day
- Staying up all night
- Not getting enough sleep
- Making excuses
If you find yourself automatically trending toward these types of actions for bad days, you may need to consider professional assistance. Online Therapy is a wonderful and affordable online therapy company that utilizes CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) models to help readjust unhelpful thought patterns. It is free to sign up, and you can use this link to get 20% off your first month of online therapy today!
How Do You Cope With a Bad Day?
Bad days are a normal (although unfun) part of life and it is not fun to let one dictate your day. Now you have a million things to try the next time a bad day sneaks up on you. No more excuses, right? Just pick something and start! If one thing doesn’t work, try another. Results may vary, and what works one time may not work the next. Just keep an open mind, alright?
What are your go-to things to do when you’re having a bad day? I’d love to hear your tips and suggestions in the comments below!
Have questions, concerns, comments you would rather share with me? Please send an email to [email protected] and I would love to talk more in detail about what you have in mind.
If this article helped you out (or you think it would help the people you care about!), I would love nothing more for you to share this on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, Reddit, or wherever else you hang out online.
Well this was a great read! The suggestions provided reminded me that I can change my perspective and see my tasks as a way of letting go, regrouping, and starting again.