I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that life isn’t always peachy. Sometimes we get blue. We get sad or anxious or stressed. It’s tempting to try to blow through all of the day-to-day responsibilities and ignore how we feel, but sometimes we need to deal with our feelings. Or just take a little break.
Here are 10 things to do when life gets you down.
1. Take a Walk.
Maybe you’ve been sitting at your desk all day, frustrated with a problem. Maybe you’re sitting and stewing over something your sweetie said. (<-no judgments here. happens to me more often than I’d like to admit) If you’ve been sitting and thinking about your problem, sometimes it helps to get moving. Clear your head, get your blood flowing and get some fresh air.
2. Watch a Comedy.
Did you know that laughter literally kills stress? According to the Mayo Clinic, laugher both activates and then releases your stress response. It can also stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation. Besides all the science, we all know we feel better watching our favorite funny program.
Currently I have Gilmore Girls on in the background and it makes me happy even if I’m not belly laughing all the way through it.
3. Call (or text) a friend.
Venting can be incredibly helpful at times. Make sure you convey to the friend whether you want to vent or you need advice. It’s awful when you’re looking for a, “that sucks” and you get, “Oh, all you have to do is…” right??
4. Write in a diary.
If you’re venting to your friends a little too often, maybe try venting to a diary or journal. The University of Rochester Medical Center cites benefits from journaling such as managing anxiety, reducing stress and coping with depression. Basically, it’s good for you to get all of your thoughts out on paper (or on your laptop if you prefer).
5. Turn on some music and have a dance party with yourself.
When life gets you down, why not crank on some tunes? Tips for this one: make sure it’s a happy songs, make sure you give yourself the freedom to look totally ridiculous. Bonus points if you sing into a hairbrush.
6. Play with your pet.
When I’m having a bad day, nothing feels better than coming home and snuggling with my fluffy cat, Zoey. I even tell her my problems sometimes. I mean, she’s a cat, so she can’t really judge too harshly. I’m sure Sarah could back me up with reasons why pets are awesome.
7. Make a list of things to do.
When life gets overwhelming, make a list. I will stand by this till the day I die. It’s kind of like organized journaling, in my humble opinion.
8. Make a list of things you are grateful for.
If making a list of things to do doesn’t help, maybe making a list of the good things in your life will. There is always something to be grateful for, and it’s so important to remember to focus on the good. I often need this reminder. Hopefully this list will put a smile on your face and get you moving in the right direction.
9. Take a bubble bath.
I used to have the hardest time taking baths. Sitting in one spot with nothing at all to do except for move the bubbles from one side of the tub to the other isn’t exactly my idea of fun. However, since I started running and using Epsom salt baths for recovery, I figured out how to stay in the tub for longer than 15 minutes: distractions.
Put on some music, a podcast, or turn on Netflix in the background and let the power of the hot bath (and salts and bubbles) calm you. Relaxed muscles from the hot water help relieve stressed muscles.
10. Read a book.
Maybe you just need to escape a bit. Maybe you need some positive words. Whatever you’re looking for..you can usually find that in a book! I’ve been reading actual books lately (made of paper and everything) and I really think it helps with my focus.
Internet articles and social media can be great (and still count as reading..right?), but holding something non-electronic and focusing on it can help calm our brains. You will also sleep a little better if you read a real book before bed as opposed to something with blue light according to Harvard Health (and everyone else). And we all know sleep is good for our mental health, right?
Hope this list helps, friends!
What do you do when life gets you down?
Do you read “real” books these days? What are you currently reading?
Love note: Of course depression can be a very serious thing, so if you’re having a really hard time, please seek the professional help you need. None of the tips on this blog are meant to help with serous depression as we are not medical experts.
Linking up to: Thursday Thoughts