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Patty Craig: A Slice of Time

Have you ever had a bad day? Sometimes when a couple of things go wrong, we decide that we’re having a bad day. We may even beat ourselves up for whatever went wrong. Although having a bad day is common, people cope with those times differently.

In “The Science Behind ‘Having a Bad Day’ (and How to Solve It),” Steve Schwartz said:

“Here's the thing… there is absolutely no such thing as a bad day in reality. A bad day only exists in our interpretation of reality, which then becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy….We blame our misfortune on factors outside of our own control, in order to avoid analyzing the real reasons things happened as they did (or perhaps even to eschew our own responsibility). Hence, it is easy for us to believe we're having a bad day. The obvious downside is that once you accept the convenient conclusion that the entire day is for naught, it will actually cause the rest of your day to go horribly awry” (

If we’re having a bad day, how can we turn it around? Several sources on the Internet suggest activities that may help. Ruth Soukup suggested steps to get back on track: take a walk; take ten deep breaths; jot down obligations, separating the must-dos from the should-dos; ask for help; and get some sleep ( Sirena Bernal stated that a person can turn around a bad day and some of her suggestions included (

•Listen to a favorite song and sing along.

•Take a shower.

•Pet an animal.

•Sign out of Facebook.

•Walk barefoot in the grass.

Also, wikiHow ( advised: “Don't make huge decisions when you're in a bad mood - financial, emotional, etc. Let the negative state pass, before you choose poorly.” Although I had not thought of this aspect, it is logical that we may not be functioning at our best.

Many of us have go-to behaviors for turning around a bad day. I personally like to cook or nap. I asked friends and family what they commonly do to feel better after having a bad day. Their responses are listed below:

•Crochet, read a book, or go for a drive with the music turned up!

•Cuss and go on!

•Lay down and rest and watch television.

•Depends. Usually I either watch TV or sleep.

•Pray, go run, or have a bourbon and coke. Or all three.

•I like to take a hot bubble bath, snuggle with my dog and read a book. If it’s been a stressful week and a hot bath just won’t cut it, I’ll go get a pedicure. I also love to nap!

•Sleep or play with my kids.

•Read a book in bed with a heated blanket! It’s one of my favorite things to do.

•Alone time. I plug in my earphones and watch shows on the iPad. This drowns out all the outside noise.

•Read! It’s my great escape.

•Walking or listening to gospel music always helps make my mood better. Unfortunately, I usually eat instead and then feel worse instead of better.

•When I have had a bad day, I like to exercise, eat comfort food and go to bed early. Exercise and comfort food don’t really go together, but it’s the truth.

•Smoke a cigarette.

•Exercise, try to hang out with my daughter so I think about kid stuff instead, and maybe have a glass of wine. 

•Eat, call my friend, and watch TV.

•For a really bad day, I sleep. For a sort of bad day, I cook or read or listen to music.

•Go for a long drive or run.

•I try to count my blessings and realize that I am blessed, considering where I started and where I am. Then I allow myself to have a short pity party and get over it.

•I play with my puppy!

•Work in my yard or meet my knitting pals at Starbucks. And I try to always remember I’ve much for which to be grateful.

•Have an early supper, a hot bath, an early bedtime, and pray for a better day tomorrow.

Regina Brett said, “No one really has a bad life. Not even a bad day. Just bad moments” ( Even though bad moments will certainly come, we can turn things around. As Ruth Soukup advised, “…sometimes the key to getting through the most stressful times is just giving ourselves the grace to do the best we can.” On one occasion, a friend counseled: be kind to yourself. I’ve found wisdom in those words.


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