Seven things to do when you’re “having a bad day”

Yee Lim Shin—Staff Writer

You’re having a bad day. I mean, it’s perfectly understandable considering the situation we are in. Stress levels are at an all-time high, classes are slowly coming to an end, and you’re just done with everything in life. If you feel any of these emotions, then you’ve come to the right place. Yes, I know everyone has a different definition of what “having a bad day” looks like. For example, a Cherokee Country Sheriff from Georgia described a “really bad day” as shooting multiple innocent people. But we’re not here to talk about racial discrimination, we’re here to talk about you. You are having a bad day and you’d rather not. So, here’s a list of seven things you can do in order to escape from “having a bad day.”

1. Sleep

Honestly, don’t we all need a little bit more sleep? It’s the golden question any college student should ask themselves: “am I actually having a bad day or am I just lacking sleep?” The University of Georgia’s Health Center reported that students only get an average of 6-6.9 hours of sleep. That’s 1-2 hours less than what is recommended. When all of that sleep debt adds up of course you’re going to wake up feeling terrible. Sit back. Take a nap. Or even try something crazier and go to sleep before 10pm! It’ll do wonders to your mood the next day and you’ll feel like a different person. People tend to do rash and crazy things when they are sleep deprived, so maybe take a quick nap before making any big decisions.

2. Journal

Journaling has been on the rise again lately and this is a great thing. When people think about journaling, they imagine a child writing a “dear diary” in their secret journal with a password lock, but it doesn’t have to be that way. That is, unless you want to of course. It’s your journal after all. Journaling is a great way to let out your pent-up emotions without causing harm to others. You can truly be yourself and try understanding what you are feeling as you organize your thoughts and the emotions you felt throughout the day. It’s scientifically proven that journaling can improve both your physical and psychological wellbeing, and no one is going to look in your journal and fix it for grammar mistakes. It’s really just you, the notebook, and your pen that will ever truly know what the journal says. If you’re scared someone is going to find and read your journal, you can always hide it with your dirty laundry. This is a fool-proof place to hide things—as long as you remember to take it out on laundry day.

3. Take a mental health day.

Just take a day where you focus on yourself. As much as school and friends are important. Sometimes you just need to take some time out of your week and have some “me-time.” Kick back in your pajamas and watch a couple of movies on Netflix to brighten up your mood. Watch some old movies you used to love as a kid to bring back some childhood freedom. Maybe in-between episodes grab some good food and drink water to make sure your body is well replenished. With the lack of breaks we have had this semester, taking a mental health day is essential. 

4. Hug your pet or the nearest campus cat.

Not all of us have the privilege of having an animal on campus. If you do have an animal on standby, you’re in luck, because your life is about to get a little happier. It has been scientifically proven that when we hug animals, our bodies release “feel good” hormones of oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin. If you ask any college student, you know these are things we generally lack. Go and find your nearest fuzzy critter and try to see if it will let you give it a hug. I would advise that you refrain from hugging squirrels though, because I hear they bite. Honestly, if you’re having a hard time trying to find an animal to hug, you can always ask your friends. They probably need one too.

5. Sit back and do some self-care

Take a day where you just focus on yourself. It can be a Saturday afternoon when you finally roll yourself out of bed at 2 pm. First of all, congrats on getting yourself out of bed! That’s the first step to self-care. Go take a shower and maybe try some five-step Korean beauty routines to make your face feel 10 years younger. Get a sheet mask from Walmart and truly feel your face being moisturized. Start recovering from the harsh winter weather and get ready to look absolutely glowing for summer. Go to a spa, but try avoiding them if you have pent-up anger issues and addiction, especially towards a specific race—that would hinder a peaceful spa day and lead to a whole lotta disaster.

6. Go out with friends

COVID-19 has led us to not being able to meet our friends for months, and we understand how lonely that feels. Sometimes, all we need is a good laugh with our friends, whether that is in our dorm or apartment room or going on a trip (masked and socially-distanced from others, of course). Having fun and creating happy memories with friends is a great way to feel fresh and understand the importance of building relationships. Grab a couple friends and jump into a car for a spontaneous road trip.

7. Take a walk

Last, but not least, now that the weather is finally getting warmer and the sun is shining, it’s time for us to go outside again. Say no more to seasonal depression and go take a walk to absorb much-needed Vitamin D. Leave your cluttered desk behind and go take a breath of fresh air. Maybe even take someone special on the very famous Prairie Walk. Spring is coming, so you know you’ll be seeing a lot of people down on one knee. Put on your favorite tunes and follow the Sioux Center trail and just maybe you’ll meet a dog or two to pet. If you want to spice things up, just follow where the harsh Iowa wind blows and see how far it’ll take you. Just make sure to bring a GPS so you can find your way back to Dordt.

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