Guest Post: Three Steps to Turning Around a Bad Day

In the charming picture book, Gus’ Fortunate Misfortune, Gus turns a very bad day into a hopeful new beginning. Here are some tips on how we can all do that from author Susan Pepka.

Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on

Here you are right smack in the middle of a Bad Day.  It doesn’t feel good. You don’t like it…not one bit. You want this to stop and turn into a Good Day but how to make that happen?

First, stop and recognize that this doesn’t feel good and you don’t like it. Next, realize that these are just unpleasant feelings and most likely aren’t going to kill you. Breathe for a minute, then two, three if you need it. Allow your mind to focus on only your breath and this process will naturally begin to calm you.

Now you can try to get out of your own head. There are many things that can cause a day to seem bad but let us look at an unexpected roadside breakdown.  It’s not what you planned or wanted, but it’s a done deal…no changing that. No reason to upset yourself about something that you’re already in the middle of. Then ask yourself:  Can I fix this? If the answer is yes, then no reason to be upset. Either fix the flat or call for help. It can’t be fixed? Then still no reason to be upset, call for help and practice patiently accepting. 

Allow your mind to focus on only your breath and this process will naturally begin to calm you.

Now look around. Are you the only person experiencing any sort of discomfort, pain, or Bad Day? Most certainly not! Put yourself in the place of another or others also suffering. Maybe stuck in traffic, waiting on a diagnosis, begging for food, looking for a job, fighting a war, fleeing persecution.  Think of how so many others are suffering and imagine their pain.  Now, wish for them to be happy.  Do this from the depths of your heart. Spend some time on it. I almost guarantee that this will help you to feel better.

Then, repeat if necessary.  Be well and happy!

For more information about Susan Pepka and her new picture book, Gus’ Fortunate Misfortune, visit Blog Post + Giveaway: Gus’ Fortunate Misfortune and Z is for Zebra: A Mosaic Menagerie.

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