12 Steps to Turn a Bad Day Around

12 Steps to Turn a Bad Day Around - infographic - letsreachsuccess.com

This is a guest post by Marilyn, a freelance writer, specializing in topics connected to management, careers and self-improvement from a HR perspective. You can find her on Twitter.

No matter how perfectly you have your working day planned, no matter how fine-tuned your routine, disaster can still strike in the shape of the unexpected.

Your good intentions and polished techniques do not preclude the interference of outside forces, or even inner ones – you’re only human, after all. It could be computer trouble, a sick pet, a bad night’s sleep or a nightmare assignment, but when your plans are thrown out of whack it can be tough to get your ideal-you back online.

Bad days are, however, a fact of life. Being in control of your life means learning to roll with the unexpected as much as perfecting your ideal routine.

Working out your own personal method for dealing with day-derailing occurrences can help you to maintain inner peace. What’s more, that positivity can be translated into tangible results.

We’re 31% more productive when we’re chipper, and three times as creative – which is perhaps why we’re 40% more likely to get a promotion. The benefits to your health and to your relationships are also considerable.

So what to do when your perfect plan goes awry?

The first thing to remember is to breathe.

The way we relate to our body dictates so closely what we feel in our minds. Taking deep breaths will help you find a peaceful place from where to begin rebuilding your day.

Only then should you engage your brain: take a comfortable seat, a pencil and paper, and write down in concrete terms what the problem is. Be logical. Try to trace the anger, hurt or fear you’re feeling back to the precise events so as to get a broader view on the situation. And then you should be ready to assess how serious the turn of events really is.

It’s time to re-plan your day.

Maybe you don’t need to make any major changes, or perhaps some sacrifices need to be made to resolve the situation. That’s okay, if it’s the only way forward.

If it’s a minor situation, or something that doesn’t need dealing with urgently, perhaps you can afford to take an hour off while your nerves settle down. Remember, going for a walk, a swim or a shower can be productive if they reboot your system for a more effective performance.

If you don’t have time to get away, it is still worth making the discipline of taking five minutes to reset your mood.

Think about all the good things that are going on with you right now, and the ultimate reward for the tasks that are proving troublesome. If that mood really won’t shift, trying talking to a friend or colleague about it. Rather than purely venting, a meaningful discussion can help you find a new perspective on one level, while distracting you from the raw emotions on another. Never underestimate the healing properties of human warmth!

Finally, whatever goes wrong, remember that there’s a lesson to be taken from each setback or mistake – even if that lesson is simply how to cope better next time the unexpected strikes. For more ideas on getting ahead of the game on that one, be sure to check out the infographic below by Headway Capital for a step-by-step guide to defusing a good day gone bad.

What about you? How do you turn a bad day around?

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Signs You’re Stuck in a Rut (and How to Get Out)

signs you're stuck in a rut and what to do about it

Life has its ups and downs for all of us, but sometimes those downs creep up and take hold without us noticing. All of a sudden we look around and realize that we’ve found ourselves stuck deep in a rut. If you don’t know you’re in a rut, it can be very difficult to get out and this can lead to lasting negative effects on your health and happiness.

So how do you know when you’re in a rut?

And, more importantly, what can you do to get back on track?

One of the biggest red flags that demonstrate that you might be drifting listlessly through your own life is that you spend most of it daydreaming of being somewhere else.

It’s perfectly normal to spend some time in the office wishing you were lying on a beach instead, but if this is a permanent state of affairs, it’s a sign that you’re dangerously bored. Try adding some spontaneity into your life to liven things up a bit, at least until that next vacation.

If you don’t have an exotic location to jet off to, you need to make sure you still have some things to look forward to. If the only thing you have any anticipation for is getting into bed at the end of every day, then you’re definitely in a rut and need to start finding enjoyment in the little things in life, appreciating all of the things that come in between waking up and going back to bed again.

Social media is a great tool for lots of things in our lives. But it can also have a very damaging effect on your mental health because it’s easy to be fooled by the edited highlights of their lives people put on there. This can leave you feeling envious because the day to day reality of your life doesn’t look like what you assume everyone’s life is, so stop obsessing over other people and shift your focus back to yourself.

Doing this shouldn’t come at the expense of actually ever seeing other people or doing anything, of course. So if you’re finding that you are spending all of your time at home rather than getting out and seeing friends, or claiming that you don’t have time to do anything (when the reality is quite the opposite), these are all also signs that you need to think hard about changing your habits.

Nobody ever wants to get stuck in a rut, but in a world where work-life balances are getting ever more hard to maintain and technology is eating into face to face interactions, it’s easy to find yourself wondering where your life went. These tips from NetCredit will help you identify whether you are living yours in a rut and will help you start to find your way out again.

More tips on how to get unstuck:

How to Get Your Motivation Back
How to Boost Your Energy and Vitality for a Successful Life
How to Embrace Acceptance in Life
How to Deal with Indecisiveness