How to make the “hard” a happy thing

Some days, I wake up and I just know that it’s going to be a bad day.

Now, you might be thinking, “That’s not a very positive outlook on life. How can you predict such negativity before you’ve even started the day?”

To clarify, I don’t think that bad things are going to happen that day; rather, I mean that I’m going to feel bad that day, regardless of the events that take place.

A common saying is, “We can’t control what happens to us, but we can control how we react to it.” I believe that to be true, to some extent. Some good methods for controlling reactions include meditation, breathing exercises, and journaling.

However, on my “bad” days, I simply don’t have the energy to control my reaction to something. It’s easier to get upset, spiral, and have a meltdown because I don’t have the energy to prevent it. As a student, I always have more things to do on my plate, regardless of exhausted I am.

Yes, it sounds difficult. It’s a tough feeling to get through. However, it’s not impossible. Here are some of the methods I utilize to survive these “bad days” and get my assignments in on time.

1. Getting started

Here are some of my favorite chapter books.

When I’m lacking energy, it’s hard to get anything done. To combat this, I do an activity that makes me happy and doesn’t require much thought. Usually, I read segments of old chapter books that I enjoyed a lot when I was younger. This works for me because I get absorbed into the book as I read, so I stop thinking about all of my stress and negative thoughts. Additionally, when I read a book, I’m performing an action that benefits me and brings me joy. It makes it easier to perform the next action, and the action after that, all the way until I’ve checked off my to-do list. Sometimes, it’s hard to get started, so this makes the start enjoyable, and everything after seems much more manageable.

2. Keeping the momentum going

These are my AirPods, which I use to listen to music when working.

Once you’ve started completing some tasks, it can still be difficult and draining. Again, the strategy is to take something that makes you happy and incorporate it into your tasks. Personally, I listen to music while I work. Music is something that I really enjoy and makes me happy; it makes me smile even when I’m feeling down. No one ever said that having a dance party while finishing your assignments was a bad thing. Some other good ways to make work more enjoyable include eating a snack you enjoy, calling a friend to help motivate you, or making a fun visual board of all the reasons why you need to get your tasks done.

While these exhausting, “bad” days are hard to survive, it is possible to get through them, as long as you make them less “bad.” This method of using things you enjoy to make things less difficult can be applied to different aspects of life, not just completing homework. To wrap up, here’s my own personal vision board that helps me through these days.


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