Things To Do When In A Negative State of Mind
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23 Things To Do When You Find Yourself In A Negative Mindset

Sometimes life just gets the better of your positive attitude.

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23 Things To Do When You Find Yourself In A Negative Mindset
Shamin Jamadar

We've all been there. Sometimes it's just been a hard week, emotionally, mentally, physically, and one thing just crosses your mind and all of the sudden you're angry and/or upset. You want to push people away or seclude yourself. You're sick of everyone and everything around you, sometimes even yourself.

So here is a list of ways to help you recoup and hopefully, bring yourself back to the normal you.

1. Take a shower

We often forget how much better we can feel after rinsing the day off of us with warm water.

2. Lock your bedroom door, turn off all the lights, light your favorite candle, and listen to a rainy day playlist

If you don't have one you like, give my compilation a try: rainy day

3. Approach whatever/whoever it is that you are upset/angry with

This one is hard, but sometimes you just need to tell your friend that something they did upset you. You don't have to be confrontational at all, just let them know that it just upset you and it could be that you've just had a hard week/day and needed to get it off your chest. If they're your friend, they'll understand, or at least be willing to hear you out.

4. Look through old pictures 

This is a weird one that I do quite often.

Sometimes small irritations with people and situations just build up, and you forget how much you care about a friends and the memories that made you friends. A walk down memory lane is just what you need every now and then. Never forget how much you care about your friends, and how much you know they care for you.

5. Scroll through inspirational quotes on Pinterest

This has been my go-to coping method lately. I scroll through my Pinterest feed and just add to my board, 'on a bad day.' Sometimes the right words will find their way to you and really change your outlook on your current situation.

6. Read "Milk and Honey" by Rupi Kaur

This one does magic. Rupi Kaur's Milk and Honey is phenomenal. It's pure, unadulterated, and will resonate with you. If you haven't read it, I highly recommend it. And if you have read it and loved it as much as I did, buy yourself a copy. It comes in handy on nights like this.

7. Watch an episode or five of Friends

Season 5 episode 11 and season 6 episode 14 are two of my favorite episodes of all time. They always, always, always manage to bring a smile on my face. And if you're not a Friends fan, watch any other show that makes you laugh.

8. ...Or watch a sad movie

If you're not in the mood for funny, a sad movie just might just be what you need. Two of my particularly favorites are Me Before You (Available on Hulu) and Love, Rosie (a major tearjerker that is worth the $2.99 on Amazon). Crying during a movie has a weird way of rejuvenating you afterwards.

9. Journal

Though I have never participated in this one myself, my best friend lives by this. It gets your negative thoughts out of your head and onto a piece of paper or Word document. You don't have to read through it for spelling or grammar, nor do you ever have to read it again, so get all of your negative thoughts out of your system.

10. Call a friend you haven't talked to in a while

When I say this, don't think you necessarily have to call someone else just to complain or even talk about what has you upset/angry, just catch up with them. Ask them how things have been, how their job has been, if their mom has been doing well. Sometimes it really is the small things that will help take your focus away from the negativity you're feeling.

11. Go for a walk or drive

Go by yourself, with a friend. Go on an actual walk or just drive around town. You can go with a friend or just by yourself, but just get out of your house/apartment/bedroom. I assure you the fresh air will really help.

12. Clean your room

Another weird one, but hear me out. Often times when I'm down or in a negative headspace its because I have been working really hard to accomplish a task/goal/objective that I just can't check off my list. Feeling unaccomplished even when you are giving your best is immensely discouraging, and for me, often is the seed that starts my negativity.

As I task that often get pushed to the back of our mind, finally completing this task helps give me a sense of accomplishment. As silly as it is, this sense of feeling that I have fulfilled some task helps calm me.

13.  Listen to a religious sermon or song

In college, we often get tangled in homework and studying that we disconnect spiritually. Listening to a prayer song or sermon can sometime be exactly what you need to be pulled out of a negative place.

14. Take a break

If you find yourself in a negative headspace, please take a break. Don't try to continue to do your homework or study for a quiz because nothing is going to stick. Give yourself an thirty-minutes or an hour to relax and regroup before you try to be push through the rest of your day.

15. Drink some tea or hot chocolate

While I don't necessarily agree with the British saying that "there's nothing a cup of tea won't fix," I do believe that I cup of tea or hot chocolate is a great alternative to stewing in negative emotions.

If you have it in you to make a trip to a coffee shop or happen to have Earl Grey teabags sitting around, I highly recommend getting/making a London Fog.

16. Indulge yourself

Along with school work, jobs, and extracurriculars, we, college students, also often find ourselves dieting or abstaining from certain foods. But sometimes life just kicks your butt and you've had a rough week, lessen the pressure your putting on yourself and treat yourself with a hot fudge sundae. Watch the toxicity lessen as you indulge yourself.

17. Rant it out

Honestly, sometimes you need to get things out of your system. Find a friend, a coworker, or even your mom and just rant and rave about how lousy a situation is, how inconsiderate a person is being, or how simply overwhelmed you are. Even if the person you are ranting to isn't fully listening to what you are saying, your anger and negativity towards a person or situation will be lightened.

18. Cry it out

Sometimes the water ducts in your body just need to rejuvenate themselves. Turn up your sad song and let the tears out. I promise you'll feel better after.

19. Plan a trip home

Go give yourself a break from the environment that is bring you down and recoup on the couch of your parents' living room.

20. Remind yourself that things will be okay

You've probably heard and seen the quote everywhere, but in case you haven't heard it in a bit: "everything will be okay in the end; if its not okay, its not the end." Don't let yourself forget that we are all incredibly young, in our early twenties. We have our entire lives ahead of us. You'll be great if you make an A on your exam, but you'll also be okay if you make a B-. You really and truly will be okay and things that are meant to work out will. Don't allow yourself to doubt that.

21. Write down your favorite inspirational quote and tape it on your bathroom mirror 

Before you go to bed, write down your favorite inspirational quote on a PostIt note and tape it onto your bathroom mirror. My hope is that reading this quote as you start a new day will provide you some amount or inspiration and positivity.

22. Close your eyes and focus on your senses

Close your eyes and focus on your breathing, how the air flows in and out of your nose. Inhale the scent of your candle. Focus on the sound of your fan and the flapping of the papers on your desk. Listen to all the other sounds around you. Focus on the sensations in your hand, the contraction of your muscles as you inhale and exhale. Do this for 2-5 minutes, more if you'd like. Breathing exercises such are these are used in mindfulness-based cognitive therapy that was developed for those suffering from recurring depression or unhappiness.

This is a easy meditation technique for even the most busy busy student when they begin to feel overwhelmed by negative emotions.

23. Go to bed

At the end of the day, there is absolutely no good that will come out of mulling over what is upsetting you. You'll distraught yourself even more or lash out at something or someone that doesn't deserve it.

We all have rough days. We have days we're sick of a situation, a person, an attitude, a class, a job, or just purely sick of keeping it together. I hope that these suggestions are of some use to you during these times and that they provide some comfort. Never forget: it's a bad time, not a bad life.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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