Ever had a day at work that was so bad you’re ready to just walk out? We all have. How we handle it is what will either make us or break us … but is also very difficult when you feel like work has already broken you.
Unfortunately, there are no ways to avoid bad days at work. The only thing we can do is come up with coping mechanisms that are healthy and keep us moving forward. Use these tips below to help you get through the day. Whether you only have 5 minutes to pull yourself together or you’re lucky enough to take an hour break – these ideas will help you find relief fast.
In 5 minutes
Geez, 5 minutes doesn’t sound like enough time, does it! But that’s the way it is sometimes! You only get 5 minutes (sometimes while hiding in the bathroom) before your next meeting or confrontation. Try these ideas …
1.Try the 4-7-8 exercise
Read about more breath exercises here.
2. Do Light Stretching
3. Repeat an affirmation
Use the notes app on your phone to keep a list of affirmations for fast access. Here are few affirmations you could try.
In 15 minutes
15 minutes is enough time for a quick reprieve and hopefully enough time to calm you down so you don’t walk out! Try these ideas if you have enough time …
1. Go for a walk
Burn the adrenaline out of your system with a quick, brisk walk around the office or house, if you work from home.
2. Call someone to vent
Who can you vent to? Give them a heads up that you just need to vent. Let them know upfront if you’re looking for solutions or if you just need to say the f-bomb a few times to get it out of your system. Make sure you call someone who doesn’t internalize negative energy, so you don’t accidently ruin their day, too.
3. Listen to music
Break out the earbuds or sit in your car for a bit. Try these Spotify playlists if you need some upbeat music:
4. Watch a funny video
Need a laugh? Start here and then create a YouTube playlist of your faves …
5. Play a game on your phone
PC Magazine has a list of games you can try. Maybe there will be some new ones you haven’t tried before.
6. Write a list of the good things in your life
Remember you are more than your job! Are you a parent, friend, partner, involved in a hobby? Those are all good things! Make a list and write one positive thing about each of those things.
In 30 minutes
There are plenty of things you can do in 30 minutes. Start by being grateful for the break and then try one or more of these ideas …
The Fitness Marshall is amazing. Try his workout and you’ll end up with a smile on your face …
If you can’t leave your desk then try desk yoga.
If you can leave your desk, then try yoga outside.
Try the Meditation Minis Podcast. They are around 7-10 minutes long and offer immediate relief.
If you’re still muttering f-bombs under your breath then go all out and listen to “F*ck That: An Honest Meditation”
4. Get in nature
If there’s a park nearby then go for a quick walk and focus on all of the natural beauty around you. If you’re not near a park then try to get close to gardens or water features so you can connect to nature.
5.Grab some tea.
Smile big when you order. Psychologists say that smiling is an easy way to start feeling more positive. Green tea has amazing benefits for your mental health, so order a large size!
In 60 minutes
Whether it’s a lunch break or you get to sneak out for a bit, take this time to really focus on self-care. Try these ideas …
If you have a gym membership, then get in there and get sweaty. Burn off that aggression!
2. Make a to-do list, then get away from your desk for a while
To-do lists will help you feel more in control of your situation. Make a list so you know what you’re doing first as soon as you get back. Then LEAVE and get a break mental break knowing that everything is ready for when you get back.
3. Walk and listen to a positive podcast
You have enough time to get into a good podcast. So find one that will help you either destress or learn how to better handle the situations around you. Try one of these:
4. Grab tea and sit outside if you can
Like we said earlier, green tea baby! Get it in your system!
5. Search job openings
If you’re ready to walk out anyway, why not look up some new opportunities. Just knowing you have options you can apply for can have you walking back into work with your head higher. You’re not stuck! You’re simply learning quickly in an environment that’s not suited for you and you’ll move on when you’re ready.
At the End of the Day
According to healthline.com, “Crying for long periods of time releases oxytocin and endogenous opioids, otherwise known as endorphins. These feel-good chemicals can help ease both physical and emotional pain.” So do it if you need to.
2. Reward yourself with a tasty treat.
We’re not saying to smash a whole chocolate cake – that will come with too much regret and shame. We’re saying to make a smoothie or enjoy a Hershey kiss.
3. Lose yourself in a hobby
You need to have SOMETHING, ANYTHING outside of work that makes you happy. If you have a hobby then lose yourself in it after work. If you don’t have a hobby then try one of these ideas…
4. Workout with a friend
Grab your bestie and choose something fun and active. Want to try something new? How about …
5. Tidy your bedroom to create a relaxing space
Use these tips to give your bedroom a makeover. Set yourself up for success by creating a relaxing oasis inside your home.
Hopefully these ideas help! Learning how to stay positive and take care of your own mental health is a big learning curve as an adult. It’s in your best interest to keep looking for ideas that are most effective for you. Comment below if you have a relaxation idea we could try!
First, I'm the mother of three crazy, sassy, sarcastic, hilarious children. Second, I work in the world of social media, email, digital marketing. Third, I'll probably try to tell you what to do.