Sometimes your day can start great and then suddenly go off the rails. It may be a big thing that sets you off, or a stacking of little things.
On a recent day, after an energizing call, I had fallen behind my schedule. The work I wanted to get done wasn’t even started.
I had been sitting in my parked car, with the engine completely off, for over an hour, trying to film reels for Instagram. I was already feeling bad about myself, hearing my inner critic escalate and the voice of despair take over.
I decided it was time to move on.
And then, my car wouldn’t start. The battery was somehow totally dead.
Those kind of days.
It can be tempting on those days to just give up on everything and pack it in. Sometimes, that’s necessary for the day.
There’s also the option to hit the reset button on your day.
Here are 7 strategies that work for me when I need to reset my day. You can use these independently or in combination to hit the “RESET” button at any time.
Get into your body and move the energy through you.
Yoga. Dance. Run. Swim. Take a walk. Lift heavy weights. Jump around like a kid. You can literally just stand up and shake out your body limb by limb.
If you can do this in nature, even better.
What’s important is to pick something that will get you out of your head and into your body, and let the energy move through you. Motion releases emotion.
Turn on a good playlist or even one song that energizes you. Play it on repeat.
Music is a proven mood-changer. That’s why movies and television shows use it to set a scene, and why it’s become so popular on social media to play music as the background to reels on Instagram and TikTok.
You’re already doing it; you might as well make it conscious.
Breathing helps you connect to your body, and it also moves the energy through you.
Here are a few different breath practices to try:
- *HA Breath*: Inhale through the nose, deep into your belly. Exhale through the mouth, with an audible HA sound. This works your diaphragm and pushes out the stale air. Allow yourself to make the sound loud; the vibration from your own sound also helps to tone the vagal nerve, which is intricately linked to our fight-or-flight response.
- *Box Breathing*: This is a 4-part breath with even inhales and exhales and a hold at the end of each. This helps regulate your nervous system by evening out the breath. Try to do this only through your nose.
- Inhale for a count of 4
- Hold the breath for 4
- Exhale for a count of 4
- Hold empty for 4
Find something that makes you laugh, and laugh. Out loud.
Not the fake “LOL” laughing. Really laugh out loud. Even if it’s not that funny, laugh.
Laughter is secret breathwork and music — because it’s sound. It also works your diaphragm, giving you some bonus core work. Laughter also makes you feel good.
Find someone who can use some help and offer to help them.
Carry someone’s groceries to their car for them. Offer to take over a chore for a friend. Listen to someone who could use a friend. Hold space. Solve a problem.
Focusing your attention on someone else will help you feel better, and you’ll help someone else in the process. A win-win.
(6) Remember Who You Are
This one requires some advance prep work.
Create a “Feel Good File” — a photo album or folder on your phone with screenshots or copies of
- thank you emails/texts
- Tweets/social media comments
- milestone moments
- anything else that reminds you of how you’ve helped others and what you’ve done
Spend a few minutes reviewing this album and reconnecting with how you’ve helped others and what you’ve accomplished in the past.
Think about one thing or person in your life for which you feel grateful. Write down what it is, and why you are grateful. Get specific.
If it’s a person, reach out and tell them, both verbally and in writing.
This always helps me feel better, and it’s nice for the person to have a written note of appreciation for their “feel good file.”