I had a really bad day

31 Ways to Feel Better When Having a Bad Day

Whether you wake up on the wrong side of the bed like the grumpy protagonist from the children's book Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day or encounter a string of major inconveniences throughout the morning, it's never fun to feel like you're having a bad day.

While you can't exactly solve all of those problems or hit the restart button on an "off" day, there are some smaller things you can do to interrupt and reroute the cycle. In fact, the key is to put yourself in a better headspace so you can more easily cope with all of the unlucky things piling up. To help you boost your mood and get back on track, try the following 31 things to do when you're having a bad day. At the very least, they'll set you up for a better day tomorrow!

 MyDomaine / Emily Roberts

Get Outside

If you can devote a lot of time to this and head out on a hike or picnic, great. But if you have a hectic day at the office, even a short burst of outside time will boost your mood. Try taking a 10 minute walk around the block — it'll really help!

Take a five-minute walk around the block to lift your energy and take your mind off of everything.

Call Up Your Family Members

Or try calling long-distance friends to catch up during your commute or after a long workday. Talking to your loved ones can help bring you out of a small rut.

Practice Deep Breathing

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If you find yourself overwhelmed, or you just want a reset in the middle of a busy day, try deep breathing exercises. This practice can help you calm yourself down and shift your mindset.

Go See a Movie in Theaters

Instead of curling up with Netflix (though this can help sometimes, too), try getting out to a solo movie date. It'll allow to you disconnect and immerse in the fictional story rather than dwelling on your bad day.

Treat Yourself to Something Relaxing

Treating yourself to something like a massage, pedicure, facial, or blowout is a great cure for the blues. If that's not your jam, you can try something like reading a book or doing a puzzle.

Turn Your Own Bathroom Into a Spa-Like Oasis

Fashion Me Now

Choose one of your favorite candles, a luxe soak, and a relaxing playlist and relax in utter bliss. Don't forget to turn off the lights, grab your Bluetooth speaker and a couple of snacks.

Get Some Perspective

Bust open that journal! Write down the events or moments that brought you down so you can assess how little or large these issues really are in the scheme of things.

Call Your Bestie

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Our friends really make the world go 'round. Don't forget to check in with your bestie every now and then, and if it's someone who lives nearby, make a plan with them.

Read Some Motivational Quotes

If you need to lift your spirits, read some of your favorite feel-good quotes or poems. We're personally fans of Rumi Kaur and the iconic Maya Angelou.

Go for a Long Drive

Going for a drive is one of the best ways to relieve both restlessness and pensive moods. Blast your music, roll down your windows, and let the wind wash your stress away.

Update Your Résumé

Look at job postings online if you're feeling stuck and overwhelmed at work. This will make you feel like you're doing something to make a change, even if it's going to be a longer process.

Write Down What You Admire About Yourself

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Try not to be so hard on yourself or blame yourself for the bad day you're having. If that sounds impossible right now, try hiding away these little self-love notes around your home so you find them next time you're having a bad day.

Grab an Adult Coloring Book

And get to work with some pretty colored pencils. If you want an extra mood booster, pour some sparkling water and play your favorite playlist on your speakers.

Go on a Pinterest Bender

Is there anything better than going on Pinterest and curating your wardrobe or your next vacation? We don't think so. Make a few Pin boards of some recipes you want to try or cute hairstyles for your next weekend brunch date.

Create a Gratitude List

Instead of focusing on the things that aren't going well in your life, remind yourself of everything you're thankful for. All you need is a journal, a pen, and your thoughts.

Visit a Museum Exhibit or Art Gallery

Egg Canvas

Taking a leisurely walk through a museum or looking at art in a gallery is one of the best ways to relieve stress. A reminder: a little beauty can go a long way.

Simply Vent

You can write it down in a notebook if you don't have anyone who will listen, or text a friend, roommate, family member, or significant other. Sometimes you just need someone else to confirm that it isn't in your head and that your day really is bad.

Do Some Retail Therapy

There's nothing like a new reward in the form of shoes. If you don't have time to go anywhere, shop online.

Find a New Dessert Recipe to Try

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Baking is an incredible stress reliever — and there's nothing like eating something delicious you;'ve made with your own hands. If you don't have a sweet tooth and/or dislike cooking, eat your favorite meal at your favorite restaurant.

Listen to a Comedy Podcast

Laughter is the best medicine! Listen to your favorite funny podcast or look at a hilarious meme account on Instagram to your daily dose of laughter.

Play with Some Animals

You know that feeling you get when you see a cute puppy on the street? That's true happiness. Schedule some time to play with animals at a local shelter, offer to walk a friend's dog, or just google cute puppies and kittens.

Take a Shower

Sometimes you don't need to do anything elaborate to turn your day around. Bust out your body scrubs, your good deep conditioner (we all have one), and your waterproof speaker and have the best shower ever.

Sign Up for a Yoga or Meditation Class

Because I'm Addicted

Sign up to attend a yoga class tonight or tomorrow morning. This will give you something to look forward to, and it'll really help clear your mind.

Look Through Old Photos and Family Albums

Reminisce about all the great times you've had with your loved ones. Seeing these funny or sweet pictures will remind you of fond memories.

Stroll Through a Public Park

Or enjoy a good book on a bench. If you've been cooped up indoors, a nature walk with a good book is a serious treat.

Learn How to Make Your Favorite Cocktail

Making cocktails at home is truly a flex. Go to YouTube or try a lesson on Masterclass to learn how to make the perfect margarita or a French 75.

Drink Enough Water

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This may sound obvious, but sometimes when our minds are elsewhere, we forget the basics, which is key to functioning well mentally and physically. Drink a full glass of water and watch how you feel better almost instantly.

Play a Round of a Board Game

These intellectual activities are great ways to stimulate our minds without doing something stressful. You can even try a card game or chess

Try Some Gardening

Consider signing up for a plot in the community garden, or use your own backyard. If you don't have the space, you can also try your hand at raising a few indoor plants.

Try Taking the Holistic Wellness Route

Is there a healing shop in your area? Ask the shopkeeper to teach you about aura sprays, healing crystals, and ritual candles just for fun.

Work Through the Frustrating Emotions

Get the bad-day vibes out of your system, not by distracting yourself, but by letting yourself scream into a pillow. Not working? Punch it! Cry into it, rip it, hug it, yank it… and then clean up your mess as you regroup and calm down.

How to Cast a Happiness Spell on Yourself, According to a Real-Life Witch

Things to do when you're having a really, really bad day.

Sometimes something awful happens and you feel like everything is hopeless and everyone is horrible and just 'oh-my-god-this-is-the-absolute-worst-how-did-I-get-here-I-just-want-to-curl-up-and-cry'.

It sucks. I've had my share of those days over the last twelve months. This is how I have managed to get through them and come out the other side.

1. Take a breath
Stop. Take a really slow breath. Don't skip this one... do it. Count it out. 5 seconds in, hold for 2, and 5 seconds out. Just get in this present moment. Right now, in this very moment, everything is ok. Look around yourself. Get present. Feel the air going into your lungs and out again. Cool as it comes in and warm as it goes out. Just focus on that. Listen to the sounds around you. Listen for the quietest sound you can hear. Not the obvious, louder sounds. What's beneath that? Focus on the quieter sounds. Ground your feet onto the floor and mindfully acknowledge the present moment that you are in. Come back to your breath, slowly, in and out. If you get stuck as you read on, come back to your breath, get centered and try again.


2. Take stock of what you've got
There are positives in any situation. Look for them. Gratitude is such a powerful practice. You are alive. You have people around you who care. You are capable. You are powerful. Remind yourself of what you have to be grateful for. There is so much. The fact that you are reading this article right now means that you can read, you can see, you can think, you have resources available to you. There are people that can't do those things. It's easy to forget how lucky we are and feel like 'everything has fallen apart'. It hasn't. It's just that this one thing is not going the way you'd like it to right now. You are still so very lucky to be who you are and have what you have.

3. Be realistic
Put things into perspective. Whats the worst case scenario? Is this really as bad as you think it is, or are your emotions getting away from you and making it all feel much worse than it is. What's the worst that can happen. Write it down if you need to. Then step back and question it. Is that really likely? If you were an outsider with a clear head, would you predict that those things are absolutely going to happen? And even if those things do happen, what can you do about it? Do you have options that may help improve the situation. It's much better to channel your energy in that direction. Being in action can often dull those anxious feelings.

4. Forget blame
Don't start looking for a bad guy. Blame and hate does nothing to improve a situation. Don't blame yourself, and don't blame anyone else. And even if the situation appears to be someone's 'fault', don't waste your energy focusing on some kind of backlash or revenge. You never, ever make your own life better by making someone else's worse. No one needs to 'suffer' or 'learn their lesson'. They are on their own journey and they will learn the lessons they are put on this earth to learn and that is not your responsibility to make that happen. Focus on your own journey and let go of resentment. Channel that energy into finding the most positive outcome that will make your life better. You are what matters here while there are likely many factors at play, looking forward and being solutions focused is the best use of your energy.


5. Unplug
Sometimes when it's all too much, the best thing you can do is unplug. Literally and figuratively. Take a step back from everything. Cut it all back to basics. Simplify your life. Shut out anything that doesn't absolutely need your attention right now and just focus on healing. If you, like me, are an introverted personality type, then this is one of the most powerful things you can do. Being 'on' and communicating with other people takes energy and if you can reserve that energy to hide away for a moment you may find that you're able to build your 'armor' back up much more quickly. Plug into only people that inspire and energise you. Those that have nothing but unconditional love and judgment-free understanding for you. Do not feel obligated to allow people to 'be there for you' if that's more about them than you.

6. Feel it
The thing with 'feelings' is that you have to feel them. They are there for a reason. Every emotion has it's place. Sadness allows us to release. If you try to push it away it will exhaust you, and if you try to bury it down it will fester and grow. If you allow yourself to feel it, you can then set it free. Let the feelings come. Let them wash over you. Cry, it's incredibly cleansing. You'll often find that if you allow it to come up, it actually doesn't last as long as you might have thought. Feeling the pain and releasing it can actually be less difficult than trying to push it down. So many of us tend to feel anger instead of sadness, as it's less painful and we can project it onto someone else. We can lash out and it prevents us from having to feel what's under the anger, which is often sadness, or some form of it. At some point that sadness has to be felt and released. Better to just let it come rather than trying to push it down and build a layer of anger on top of it.

7. Self compassion
Check in with your self talk. Are you being kind to yourself? Are you talking to yourself in a way in which someone who loves you would? Or is your inner critic running amok right now? Your thoughts create your feelings so if you are not feeling good then the best thing you can do is try to change the way you are thinking. Show yourself some compassion. Give yourself the love that you would want to receive from others. If your mind is saying things to you that you would not say to your best friend, things like 'you are useless, no one loves you etc etc' then you really are not being kind to yourself and you are not going to start feeling better until you turn that around. You are doing the best you can with what you've got. Forget blame, forgive yourself and tell that inner critic to back down just like a really awesome best friend would do.


8. Remember who you are
In the midst of a difficult period it can be easy to lose your 'sense of self' a little. Do something that makes you feel like you. Something that will make you feel good about being you. I often find that doing something kind for someone else can anchor me back in to the essence of who I am. You are complex and unique. Your identity is not made up of what other people think of you. In fact what other people think of you is not your business. And it is absolutely a hell of a lot more about them than it is about you anyway. Forget what others think of you and focus on what you think of you. That's the only opinion that matters.

9. Look for the lessons
This has been the absolute biggest thing that has gotten me through some of the toughest times in recent months. Everything that life throws at us is there to teach us something. When you are cracked wide open and completely raw you are forced to grow and learn. In every seemingly awful thing, every heart break, every disaster, there is a lesson to be learned. Some way in which we are meant to expand our awareness and understanding of ourselves and our values. It's not meant to be easy, but if you can try to look for the lessons and allow your challenges to help you develop as a person and improve your situation, then maybe it will all be worth it when you come out the other side.

10. Do a little self care
Self care is an absolute must when things are difficult, yet it is so often the very last thing on people's minds. Don't reach for junk food, or drink yourself stupid. It will only make you feel worse. Your body and mind need you to treat it well right now. Nourish your body with lots of water and healthy foods. And most importantly, move. There were moments when I could barely get up off the floor but I somehow managed to drag myself outside and walk to the end of the street. The combination of movement and fresh air and sunshine on my skin was so powerful. A walk outside is one of my 'happiness islands'. Some others include a hot bath, an early night, watching a favourite old movie, dancing to 80's music, journaling, buying a new crystal, cuddling up with my little girl. Write a list of your happiness islands and make sure you do one of them every day, or just whenever you know you need to lift your energy.

11. Do something different
Mix it up. Try something new. I have discovered so many amazing new things that have helped me to heal and to stay positive through a difficult time. I've discovered healing crystals, journaling and the power of reiki. I've taken part in womens sharing circles and I've had psychic readings. These are not things I really expected to be doing. One of the biggest gifts has been discovering how much I benefit from mediation. For a while there I was needing to take sleeping tablets, which I hated. As soon as I started using guided sleep meditations I no longer needed the pills, thank goodness. I cannot recommend it enough to simply open your mind and try something that you haven't tried before. You might just find that it works for you.

12. Look to the future and trust that everything is going to be ok
Life doesn't give you anything you cant handle. Some say that we come to life, having already accepted a 'contract' that entails what we will experience in our time on earth. They believe that we take on a life knowing that there will be challenges but that it will all be worth it. I'm not too sure where I sit on that but I do absolutely believe that everything happens for a reason and that while I'm alive I will handle whatever life throws at me. Right now it might feel hopeless but if you can focus on you and take the lessons along the way then I wholeheartedly believe that you will be a stronger and better person at the other side. Some days are really, really tough but there is one thing that I know forsure. I am going to be ok. I am. And so are you, I promise.

Carlie Maree is a writer, life coach, student and mother. She blogs about all things life and love over at More Than Mum.

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I had a bad day, I can't stop being nervous - what should I do? 7 tips

There are days when everything goes wrong - work is up, everything around is annoying, and there is such a lack of sleep that even morning coffee does not save. Now, when the level of anxiety and panic among many is higher than usual, such situations can happen more often. At such moments, it is important not to condemn yourself, thus reinforcing unpleasant sensations. The Workshop retells a New York Times story about how to overcome the consequences of a bad day by taking care of yourself and your loved ones.

Take a breather

This advice may already seem banal to you. However, when experiencing strong negative emotions, we often disrupt the calm and measured rhythm of our breathing - we hold it or, on the contrary, speed it up. Stop and try to concentrate - take four seconds to inhale and the same amount to exhale.

Remember that you don't need a special place or a special time to do this simple exercise. Just stop and watch your breath. This will allow you to look at the situation and the whole day with a fresh look.


If you have been rude to someone during your bad day, just ask for forgiveness. Then try to tell what happened. Remember - this is not an excuse for your behavior, but a way to prevent a possible recurrence of a similar situation. It is important not to move on to a discussion of who is right and who is wrong.


You may still feel unwell so that even the thought of exercising seems heavy. However, studies show that a little exercise can charge you with positive emotions for several hours ahead. If you don't know where to start, try one of our selection of short workouts.

Get distracted

Sometimes all we need is to switch to another task. Turn on a video game, start a puzzle, solve a crossword or sudoku - choose what will captivate and distract you the best.

Communicate with people (or nature)

In difficult times, it is important for us to feel connected with others. Even in the current situation of self-isolation and quarantine, you can find a suitable format: for example, call a friend or wave to passers-by from the apartment window. A safe walk in the park can also help.

Do not hit the wall with your fist or shout loudly

Professor of psychology Lennis Echterling notes that such ways of expressing anger or anger can only hurt. Try replacing them with similar but more positive options - turn on a song and sing along loudly or do a high-intensity workout.

Look for pleasant moments

It is important to accept the existence of negative emotions, but at the same time not to fall under their absolute influence. Often an unpleasant experience forces us to focus only on it. Looking for positive and pleasant moments can balance the situation. We talked in detail about how best to keep a gratitude journal - it can help you take this step.

7 ways to turn a bad day into a good one

You are driving to work and your car suddenly breaks down. You try not to lose heart and keep calm, but it does not help. This is not the first trouble of the day: you overslept and did not drink coffee. When you get to the office, you can't decide what business to take on.

No matter how the day starts, being proactive and having a clear plan for dealing with adversity will help make things right.

1. Choose a positive mindset

When we think only about the bad, the brain becomes clouded. We feel frustrated and cannot bring ourselves to do anything useful. Try to look at troubles from a different angle: this is an experience that will help you avoid mistakes in the future.

2. Don't wait for something good to happen

Shakespeare also said, "Expectations are the cause of pain in the heart." When we expect something and it doesn't happen, we feel we've been disappointed, that we've been unlucky. Every minute something happens, regardless of our expectations, plans and intentions. The sooner we realize this, the sooner we begin to appreciate joy.

3. Ask yourself: “How did I get here?”

Have you achieved something, or maybe something good just happened? Consider why this happened: through hard work, luck, or coincidence? If you know what brought you to your current situation, then you can understand what needs to be done to achieve your goals.

4. Pay attention to details

By focusing on the little things and small steps, you not only speed up the path to the goal, but also make it enjoyable and interesting. If you are so busy that you can't stop to breathe in the scent of roses, then one day there will come a moment when you look back and ask yourself: "Why was I running all the time instead of enjoying life?"

5. Do good every day

The poet and philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “Happiness is like a perfume that cannot be poured on others and not a drop on oneself.” Make it a habit to do something good every day.

6. Accept your feelings, including negative ones

Do not be ashamed of your anger or sadness and try to ignore them. Try to recognize, accept and experience them. Embracing the full range of feelings helps to have a positive attitude towards life.

7. Show Empathy

Empathy is the key to understanding, it helps to build and maintain relationships with people who are different from us and radiate not only positive. Business consultant Stephen Covey believes that everyone has their own paradigms, thanks to which we perceive the world in a certain way, decide what is good and what is bad, what we like and what we don’t, and what to focus on.

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