There is a blue sky shining outside your window, a fresh cup of coffee in your hand. You’re off to a routine day at a job that may not be great but is however great to have. There may be no real problems in your life, yet there is this nagging perhaps even intrusive urge to just flip the “eff” out! If this is you, today or on other days, I first want to congratulate you on being totally, unmistakably and awesomely human just like the rest of us, who are however, having a great day! Secondly I am here to offer these five evaluations of bad days, complete with a cause, effect and solution analysis. Or, if you are too disgruntled to appreciate them, then at least a momentary distraction from your life that sucks.
# 1 You may just be stunned by monotony
Maybe there really isn’t anything wrong and you are just subconsciously trying to add a little excitement to your dull everyday routine. Perhaps if you think about it, you’ll realize an almost numbing boredom has been resonating in the back of your mind as you move swiftly and effortlessly through your day to day life. The bad day blues have been building up slowly beside the boredom in the back of your brain. Then, just in time to rescue you from another flawless morning, they come charging into reality. You start by waking up late, spilling your coffee or something equally as devastating to a freshly awakened human psyche. You notice your hair looks bad, your Grapenuts are stale or your boots have a hole in them. Then you realize you’ve lost track of time and you’re running late. (probably due to all the extra noticing you’ve been doing) It only takes a few things to really get the wheels turning and then whoosh, off you go into your premeditated bad day! (Deep down inside you are thrilled however, over how bored you aren’t being.) If you feel this may be the kind of bad day you are having, take control and remedy it with a controlled twist that leaves you feeling excited and soothes your monotony (but not like excited to kick in a bathroom stall and then hide sobbing in the corner) Do something different to spice things up like go somewhere new for lunch, play hooky for the day (no one wants a sour puss at work with them anyway), take some time to feed a forgotten passion, get lost exploring a different side of town, surprise yourself with random spots, new stores, new routes, Whatever you do, have no plan and make it deliciously unexpected, even if you do nothing “productive.” Remember that adventure is a healthy remedy. And healthy is productive.
#2 You may be deficient
Sometimes we are just off kilter and can’t seem to get balanced out no matter how ridiculous we know we are being. This is my personal worst bad day and no amount of chocolate or yelling at the children or episodes of Dexter can cure it. That’s when you have to really just stop and start over. Your whole life, just start over, move to a new town and find a new family, a new dog…just kidding! I mean start over, get back to the basics. The basics are as follow: sleep, food, water, in some cases sex. All those things in the core of your brain that our primitive ancestors learned to thrive over. I have found that most of the time my bursts of bad behavior are a result of sleep or nutrition deficiency. When I feel like I’m being ridiculous and there is no outside drama causing me to react the way I’m acting, I try to stop and think, “Is it possible I haven’t been drinking enough water or eating the right food or enough food, or taking my vitamins, have I had time to myself lately, or time with my honey? Sometimes you just have to take a few deep breaths, drink a glass of water and make yourself a PB&J, while you convince yourself you didn’t get enough sleep last night and everything is fine, you are just over sensitive due to your frail condition.
#3 You may just be a whiner
Sometimes the harsh and honest truth is, we are just being whiners. Whiners looking for attention or wallowing in our own self-pity. Why? Perhaps we are lonely and even though we are surrounded by people almost to the point of being violated we feel there isn’t one person that truly gets us or has a dark and sadistic sense of humor like we do. Perhaps we just want someone to laugh with or in this particular situation cry with. “Boo-hoo, I’m having a bad day there’s a hole in my boot, please notice me!” I’m usually a very upbeat energetic and loving person, always excited to put a smile on someone else’s face. But, when I get stuck in this kind of bad day, drowning in a pity pool that has been filled with my own sad, sorry tears, I am like the person that I wouldn’t even want to try to cheer up. This is a very sad and annoying realization but if this is you on a bad day, you just have to fess up and come to terms with it. Only then can you start getting the attention you are really craving. I hate to sound like a Positive-Patty here, but positive attention is better than negative attention. So slap yourself on the back or in the face depending on how whiney you were being and get ready to get your “nice” on! What I’ve learned is: people either really like “nice” or they are totally creep-ed out by it. But either way I promise you the attention you get will far surpass the attention or lack thereof, that the sour-puss pout you’ve been pointing at people all day has gotten you.
#4 You may have some Resentment
Sometimes we are being resentful and it slowly starts to unravel into the end all to be all. This usually happens on a nice day. Not a good day or a bad day just a nice day when everything is normal. Then suddenly! It happens! Some stupid petty thing sneaks up on you. You find yourself stuck with a frustration that you were in no way prepared for. Maybe your spouse decided to move an entirely large unneeded piece of furniture in without consulting you first and it has pushed you into a passive aggressive piss parade. Maybe the disappointment of the loss of an eBay bid on a one of a kind pair of shoes, or an unexpected call from your nagging, self-righteous, control freak, grandmother has opened Pandora’s box of vigorous triggers to all your self-sabotaging habits. You’ll know this is your bad day if ten minutes ago you were perfectly fine (or at least nice) and now your head is spinning and you want to run as far away from where the spinning started as fast as you possibly can! Everything that comes out of your mouth is condescending or served with a side of sarcasm and you’ve made it through half a bag of Dove chocolate mini pieces and are even too peevish to believe all the sweet little notes on the inside of the wrappers like you usually do. In this case it is important to catch on as soon as possible. Otherwise the resentment monster living on your shoulder will send you crashing miserably into everything and everyone you meet all day. Find a quiet place. I suggest locking yourself in your car for a few minutes. (or if you don’t have a car, then lock yourself in the bathroom and pretend it is your car) Close your eyes, and imagine the horrible petty thing that happened, all wrapped up in a pretty little brown package and being redelivered to you. Then scoop it up in your loving, logical hands and take a good look at it, accept it fully for what it is and when you are done soaking in its inescapable existence, look up at the sky and say “Universe, this package sucks. I do not like it, but I accept it and will not let it ruin anymore of my day than it already has, because this feeling or situation will eventually pass and then I will have only wasted my time resenting something that either A. has no feelings (eBay) or B. Has feelings but does not care. (nagging grandmother/oblivious Spouse)” Then if your eyes are still closed take your package and imagine getting out of your car and placing it on the ground behind your car. Open your eyes, turn the car on, and back in and out of your drive way 5 or 6 times. If the act of the package killing and resentment freeing doesn’t work, see paragraph four-sentences one and two.
#5 You may be having an actual bad day
Sometimes the bad day is a totally awesome life changing event that is disguised as your worst nightmare. We all have expectations in life, even though we are told its best not to. Most of the time we are just expecting the basics, like to make it to work without getting in an accident, or to not be betrayed by our closest friends or family, or we expect to have enough money to cover all our expenses. But, then something unforeseen happens and we are immediately panicked or forlorn. Perhaps an F150 slides into your car on an icy road on the way to work, or a friend or lover betrays your trust, a check bounces or you are injured and stuck with an immense amount of medical debt. All these things could ruin any day. But eventually you will come to terms with it all. Not to sound insensitive but the age old saying “this too shall pass,” is one worth remembering at times like these and the sooner we do that the better. As hard as it is too see the positive in situations like this, we must try. The best way to do this is to turn to gratitude. Find a positive in the situation, you may be thankful that the accident only damaged your car or that injuries did not result in taking your life, you may be thankful to know that you have the choice to choose who is in your life and who is not. Maybe you are thankful that although it may seem like you do not have enough money at the moment that there are literally endless possibilities for money and resources to show up in your life. This happens only when you acknowledge the possibility and appreciate all that is present, from love and family to a roof over your head and a meal in your tummy. On top of all you have there is always the possibility that this one horrible thing is the stepping stone to an event or an action on your part that will change your life for the better. You may never know but there is no harm in feeling good, even when you are not supposed to!
What’s your bad day pick-me-up?