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How was your day? If you’re reading this article, there’s a good chance it was one of those days you don’t even want to talk about—a day when everything that could go wrong did go wrong. You woke up late because you forgot to set the alarm. You rushed to the bathroom to get ready, and you stubbed your toe. Then, of course, you also got stuck in traffic which was just what you needed. You got in trouble with your boss, and that one co-worker that seems to delight in everything bad that happens to you made a comment that got on your nerves, so you got into an argument with them. The truth is that you can have a bad day even if it doesn’t fit the description above. It’s more about timing. Some days, even the smallest things can get to you. It would be wonderful if we could maintain a positive attitude no matter what happened, but it doesn’t work that way. Something happens, your mood is ruined, and then you have to figure out what to do to feel better. So what are the ways to destress after a hectic day? Here are a few ideas.
These days we all seem to have developed an unhealthy dependence on technology. Well, if you’ve had a bad day, the last thing you want is to make yourself available to any form of communication from work. An email, text, or Slack message will be enough to make you feel like you’re back at the office. You need a break, even if it’s just for a few hours.
But you also don’t want to be spending your time scrolling through social media. Most people use these platforms to make their friends and acquaintances jealous. And it’s very effective. However, if you’re feeling down, looking at pictures of someone’s exotic vacation while you’re eating a microwaved dinner and watching YouTube with your cat won’t help you with your mood.
Take a Long Bath
If taking some long baths is something you enjoy, now is the perfect time. But make it really spa-worthy. Get your supplies – the fizzy bath bombs, the bath salts, the face mask, body scrub and whatever else makes you feel pampered and relaxed.
You could connect your phone to a waterproof speaker and listen to some music, drink a cup of tea, read a book. You can also watch an episode of your favourite series or some stand-up comedy if you put your laptop on a chair next to the tub (but not too close).
After you finish your bath, moisturize, put on the most comfortable pyjamas in Canada and see what you feel like doing. Maybe you want to order some takeout and watch a good movie, or you’d rather go to sleep so you can wake up feeling well-rested and refreshed in the morning.
Work It Out
Some people find that exercising is the best way to boost their mood after a tough day, and it makes sense because it makes your body produce endorphins that counteract the physiological effects of stress. Especially if you’re feeling angry about something that happened during the day, a vigorous workout might be just what you need.
If you don’t feel like doing a full workout or you’re not used to working out, even taking a walk in the park for 30 minutes while listening to your favourite music will help you lift your spirits.
Clean and Organize
Another way to use physical activity to destress is to clean and organize your home. It may sound counterintuitive since, for many people, these are not the most enjoyable activities. However, the reason why this strategy works is that it gives you something else to focus on, and after you finished, you get a sense of accomplishment.
Plus, if you live in a messy home, it will add to your stress levels. Take this opportunity to do some of the cleaning chores you’ve been putting off, and while you’re at it, you could also organize your cabinets or closet, go through your mail and write down your grocery list. All these activities will give you a sense of power and control over your life, reducing your stress levels and boosting your mood.
Spend Time with Friends and Family
Another great way to change your mindset after a hard day is to spend some time with family or friends. If you don’t feel like talking about your day, you don’t have to. You’ll feel better simply by finding enjoyable ways to spend the evening together like cooking dinner and watching a show with your partner or playing a game with your friends.
On the other hand, if you do want to talk about your day, we all know a few people who have a calming effect on us. Reach out to one of them and tell them you’d like to vent. You’ll feel better, and you might even get some valuable insights from sharing experiences.
Remind Yourself That the Way You Feel Is Temporary
Some days are more challenging than others, and it’s normal to feel bad when you’re having a bad day. But when it’s happening, we tend to think that we will feel this bad forever even though we know we’ve had other bad days in the past, we survived and went on to have good days and experience positive feelings as well. Life has ups and downs, and it’s important to remember that.
However, just because your feelings are temporary doesn’t mean they’re not valid, and you should ignore them. Take a moment to recognize and acknowledge your emotions. You’ll notice that doing so will make them less overwhelming. If you want, you can go a step further and try to figure out what triggered your feelings. This will help you get to know yourself better.
Do Something Creative
Doing something creative will provide a great outlet for the negative emotions you’ve built up over the day. Maybe now you’re thinking that you’re not a very artistic person. You don’t paint, and you don’t play an instrument.
But there are a lot of ways to get creative. You can do some doodling, colouring, painting by numbers, or writing in a journal. Even baking can be a creative activity.