When I am having a bad day, I can forge ahead and strain to push myself through the day. I can try to fix everything I do not like. I can ruminate over my frustrations. I can pour over the pointless hassles I have to endure. I can persist with a job that is not going well and push until I finish that job, finally! I can correct other people. I can sit around and sulk. I can call people who have poor attitudes and confirm how miserable the world has become. I can turn on the broadcast news and get more negative information just to make certain that the world is as full of trouble as I think it might be.
On the other hand, I can restart my day by repeating the morning activities that nearly everyone practices every day.
I can go into a bathroom and wash my face and hands. Splashing a little water on my face is refreshing. When I lather up my cheeks and chin and then rinse my face, I have a fresh new smell.
I can dampen my comb and start with a fresh part in my hair, just as I do when I am beginning the day. When I no longer have enough hair to part, I can touch up a bit of my scalp with my washing ritual.
If I wore makeup, I could restart my day with a mini-makeover: lips, eyes, cheeks. Putting a gorgeous new finish on my face sounds as though it would be so reassuring and so refreshing.
I can refresh the way I have dressed. I can tuck in my shirt just as I do when I first put on my shirt in the morning. For people with a military background, you may have heard the expression gig line. That is a line that starts at the top of your shirt or blouse and goes down past your buckle to the flap over the zipper. I can check to make sure my gig line is straight.
On days when I wear a t-shirt, I can simply smooth out the ruffles and check to see how the shirt looks in the mirror.
I can at myself in the mirror and think, “Hey, you are terrific!”
When I am hungry or tired, I may deal with situations poorly. During my morning break, I can restart my day with a small, nutritious snack, sort of mini-breakfast to renew my energy. After my mini-breakfast, I can relax with quiet meditation to calm my mind and reset my disposition to happiness or higher.
Thinking about past failures and frustrations is painful. It steals our joy, our presence of mind, and our usefulness to other people, especially our clients and employers. I hurt myself when I hold pity parties for me.
I can restart my day with an attitude of gratitude. I can draft a short list of things for which I am grateful. I have a job. I have plenty to eat. I have friends and family who care for me. I am comfortable and safe. I have a place to sleep.
Sometimes I schedule too many things. On other days, too many new tasks arise. I can restart my day with a new schedule.
If I am struggling with a task, I can break the task down into pieces. I can look at the pieces or elements of the task and define my true goal for this task. With this process, I better understand what I am doing and cut the number of false starts and revisions.
I can then schedule a completion date for that task. I may find that I am dealing with a truly valuable task that will return greater rewards once I have stopped forcing my way through the task and have begun to work with a schedule of steps.
When I start the day, my mind is a little foggy and clears as I awaken. If I have developed a habit of thinking about the people I need to fix that day, I can restart my day with a new perspective. I can give up trying to change other people. Instead I can see how I can help people who welcome my help. Perhaps, I can simply listen to them with compassion and understanding.
Today I am very selective about when I watch television and listen to radio news and to which broadcasters I follow. I once had the ritual of watching television news every morning. I had a sense that I was going to learn something important or find solutions to issues that concerned me. After a couple of years, I noticed a couple of things about television news. It is repetitive. I get the same bad news every day. Even if the news is about different people in different places, the news is the same bad news about suffering and loss. Most of that bad news has nothing to do with my life. I do not get any solutions.
The flow of information about current events is impossible to avoid. In today’s overwhelming media presence, I learn about major current events whether I want to or not. I do not need to force myself to watch daily broadcast news to learn what I need to learn.
When I am turning a bad day into a great day, I find that reading an inspiring story of someone’s success lifts my day to the level where I want my day to go.
I can restart my day by taking a few minutes to read a few pages or chapters of a great book or gather meaningful information from the Internet. I can tune into broadcasts about sports or other topics that interest me and do not trouble me.
I can take a walk. If I have enough time, I have a complete workout. By exercising, I burn up that adrenaline that accumulates from the mental stresses of my workday. The exercise reduces my anxieties and helps me focus when I return to my job.
I am responsible for how my day is going for me. I can push and grind my way through a bad day or I can turn a bad day into a great day by giving my day a fresh start.