One of the greatest gifts that humans have is the beauty of a short memory. What I mean by that is that sometimes forgetting that we made a mistake is the secret to moving on. So how do you stay motivated after you have a bad day?
Sometimes when we diet, we spend so much of our time forcing ourselves to not eat that when we get hungry we overdo it and we eat more than we normally do. This is a metaphor for how some of us handle a response to having a bad day.
This doesn’t only happen when we diet, though. This happens in relationships, it happens at work, and it affects us personally. Sometimes, we just don’t live up to our own high expectations. The problem isn’t the fact that we failed, the problem is that we set the bar too high.
In order to achieve something, we need to be able to set realistic, smart goals. We also have to recognize and plan for mistakes.
If you fill your calendar out in increments of 15 minutes and don’t plan out time for a bathroom break you will probably miss a meeting.
If you don’t know how to handle an argument with your significant other, you may let it grow out of proportion. The thing about life is that people overreact, things happen, and life goes on. The way that we bounce back is more important than what happened. We can’t change what happened, however, we can move forward.
Moving forward means making progress.
What if I told you that you are going to have 100 good days in the next four months? But in order to have them all you had to do was let go of the pain that yesterday’s mistakes caused.
Would you be able to let go?
Or, would you hold onto it thinking about how you’ll never get to where you need to be. One day out of hundred days is fairly insignificant. However, so many of us unconsciously let that failure seep in and convince us that we are unworthy.
When you don’t feel like you are making progress, you feel like you’re moving backwards.
Instead, what you should do is recognize small steps are the solution to the problems that you are having. Just doing the little things, like making momentum towards the outcome that you desire is enough to erase what happened in the past.
Something that I like to do when I am feeling stressed about something that happened is to try a new activity that I haven’t ever done before.
It could be picking up a pen and trying to do a freehand drawing. It could be trying to write jokes like Kevin Hart, or lyrics like Drake. Whatever it is, I find that it takes my mind off of me being a perfectionist, because I’m not judging myself based on how good I am at those things.
Instead, I only care that I keep going, and it really helps me to focus on the fact that no one is perfect, and we don’t have to always hit a home-run.
Babe Ruth struck out a lot, more than anyone else. But he also hit a lot of homeruns. His job was to hit a moving target that was very small travelling at speeds close to 100 miles per hour.
Our job is to do new things–some of which we’ve never done before, and find a way to make them work out, without all the information on what we need to do, or how we need to do it.
In reality, Babe’s job looks pretty easy but it’s not. And neither is ours.
It’s important that we take the time to consider that for a moment.
We expect so much of ourselves.
Sometimes, we think that we should be able to spit bars like Drake, or hit homeruns like Babe Ruth, when in reality we haven’t actually put in the work to do so.
Or, we aren’t naturally gifted in the areas we are judging ourselves about.
When you feel like you aren’t good enough it’s important that you take a pause. A simple time out.
Then, after you take a few deep breaths, get a good night’s sleep.
Wake up and take the day on fresh. In order to immediately bounce back after a bad day, find the hardest thing on your to-do-list and knock it out before lunch.
Don’t take breaks, don’t whine, don’t make excuses. Just get up and get to it. I guarantee that you will feel like a million bucks afterwards.
Then, tackle the next thing on your list. By the time dinner rolls around you will feel much better about yourself.
If you drank alcohol, ate a pizza, skipped a workout, binged Netflix instead of working–it’s okay. You can work an extra two hours today, you can do an extra twenty minutes on the elliptical this evening, you can eat a salad for dinner tonight to compensate.
How do you overcome a bad day?
What’s your secret to bouncing back? I’d love to read about it in the comments!