No matter how great things are, we all find ourselves in a bit of a slump every now and then. I’ve been having a bit of a rubbish week myself, for literally no reason whatsoever – which, in a way, makes it harder to shake off because you don’t really know what brought it on in the first place!
I’ve got a few techniques in my back pocket that I pull out at times like this, and they’ve got me out of more than one sticky situation in the past…
1. Spruce myself up
I’m not talking about some expensive luxe spa day, but it’s always nice to pamper myself when I’m feeling down in the dumps. It’s only ever something small and simple, like finally refreshing my chipped nail varnish, or getting rid of those nasty roots with a fun new hair colour. Just a little self-maintenance makes me feel like I’m presenting the best version of myself to the world, even if I don’t feel like it on the inside.
2. Get some fresh air
I’m not exactly the outdoorsy type, but there really is nothing like getting some air in your lungs when you’re in a bad mood. Moping around the flat by myself only makes me more miserable, but getting outside for a walk or run (if I’m feeling particularly energetic!) always helps me feel as though I’m one step closer to getting out of whatever funk I’m in.
3. Quality cat time
I’m a cat person – I think we’ve all established that through the constant Instagram stories of my rescue Chinchilla Persian floof, Flora. It might sound silly to those who aren’t “animal people”, but anyone with a pet – be it a cat, dog, whatever – knows how important those precious playmates are to the household. I adore my little munchkin (yes, I call her disgustingly soppy nicknames like that) and she never fails to cheer me up when I’m feeling down with plenty of fluffy cuddles.
4. Get productive
One of the most common causes of my bad moods is when I’m unsatisfied with how I’ve spent my day. If I’ve wasted an entire weekend doing nothing, or I planned to get loads of things done and just didn’t get round to it, I always end the day feeling seriously frustrated – which sucks, obviously. A quick fix for this is simply to do something. Anything! Write that blog post, send that email, upload that video, edit that photo; the more I tick off my to-do list, the better I feel when bedtime rolls around.
5. Do some spring cleaning
This might surprise you if you’ve ever dropped in on me unexpectedly and seen the chaos littered throughout my flat, but nothing puts me in a negative head-space more than mess. When the washing piles up and the layer of dust on the telly gets thicker and mounds of crap stands between me and my bed, I can instantly feel a migraine coming on… Going on a de-cluttering spree or a cleaning frenzy helps organise my home as well as my mind.
I know puberty was a traumatic time and most people wish they could just forget their teenage years but, for me, I’m one of the lucky ones; I got off pretty easy. Despite the usual teenage girl drama, those years hold some of my fondest memories and remind me of a time when life was, for the most part, fun and carefree. So when I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed by the real world, I take myself back to that time, whether it’s by playing tunes I loved listening to on the walk to school or flicking though embarrassing Facebook photos taken on my Sony Ericsson Cyber-shot.
7. Cook up a storm
It’s not for everyone, but cooking really relaxes me. Sure, it’s a bit hectic when you’ve got a million pans on the go, no-one in the house eats the same meal and the stuff on the top shelf of the oven is burning while the stuff on the bottom still looks anaemic – but hey, it’s all part of the fun! Giving myself a challenge in the kitchen distracts me, allows quality time by myself doing something I love, and I always feel proud as punch when it all comes together and tastes delicious in the end.
8. Grab a big mug and fill to the brim with herbal tea
This trick is especially handy when I’m feeling physically sluggish; if I’ve eaten a lot of junk food over the weekend or I’ve found my eyes to be bigger than my belly once again. I never get a good night’s sleep if I’m going to bed feeling uncomfortable, but a lovely cup of green tea is a great pallet cleanser and refreshes my digestive system. I also find camomile helps when I’m feeling restless and irritable, and lemon and ginger is great for banishing the sniffles.
9. Make plans
Sometimes, when you feel stuck in a rut, it’s really hard to find your way out of it. It can almost cloud your perspective and feel impossible to see through the fog of your current state of mind. Something that pushes me to get out of wallowing in the present when things aren’t so great is to make plans for the future; not always easy when you’re feeling down, I know. But if you can muster up the energy to look ahead, having something to look forward to – a holiday, a date, a day out – can give you back some of the focus that you might’ve lost.
10. Take a deep breath
Simple, but always effective.