10 Strategies to Turn a Bad Day Around

My previous post told a story about waking up on the wrong side of bed, and what I specifically did to turn it around, as well as general do's and don'ts. This article continues with that theme, and shares some powerful strategies you can use to stop a bad day in its tracks.

Here we go...

1. Recognize

Recognize when your day is off to a bad start. The earlier the better. Acknowledge it, accept it, and if you want to change the trajectory, decide to do something about it.

2. Pause

Or breathe. Don't do whatever you were going to do right this second. Instead, don't do anything except breathe. Count down from 100. Do a quick SOS meditation.

3. Pattern Interrupt

Definition: a technique to change a particular thought, behavior or situation.

Find a way to break your normal thought or behavior pattern. Do something you don't usually do. The more it can shock or distract you, the better. i.e. cold showers, dance where nobody can see you, silent yell, punch a pillow. Even making this turnaround process a game is an effective pattern interrupt.

4. Distract Yourself (with Healthy Diversions)

While a shot of whiskey, a pint of Ben and Jerry's, and/or a backhand to you-know-who's cheek might sound tempting, keep your distractions as healthy as possible for your sake, and for the sake of the person you were about to backhand. You don't want to unintentionally start a Fight Club habit; that's not good for anybody. Instead, try to start a new good habit, like Tai Chi, or Goga (Yoga with goats, duh! Seriously, it exists. If you don't believe me click here).

5. Breathe Hard for >30 minutes

Find a way to get your heart rate above 120bpm for an extended period of time. I rode a bike today, but you could run, hike, go to a sweaty yoga class, circuit train with weights, hill sprint, swim the English Channel, or jazzercise. Whatever aerobi