Make The Most Of A Rough Day


When a rough day at work is over, do we tell ourselves the following?

  • “Wow, did I get beat up today!”
  • “What did I accomplish today?”
  • “Whoo, I am so wiped out”
  • “I didn’t move anything forward today”
  • “What am I doing in this job?”
  • “Why can’t people understand I’m only one person?”
  • “This is not how I envisioned my career”
  • “Why can’t my co-workers help and give their best?”
  • “I have to do this all again tomorrow”

We all get it, our jobs can be physically and mentally (and emotionally) draining. We feel like we give our all to work and have absolutely zero left for our family, or ourselves. We picture ourselves as the hamster getting on that little wheel in his cage each day and running in circles but going nowhere.

Yet if we shift our mindset just a bit and reframe our day, we can walk away with a different view. A view that enables and empowers us to keep going forward even when we feel we’re not moving the needle in our jobs or careers.

The frustrations of work should never discourage us, and while they will from time to time, our ability to control our thinking to put things into perspective will give us the power to overcome the day’s challenges.

Rough days should spur us on to improvement, not drive us to despair.

The saying “Necessity is the mother of invention” has a kindred saying that can help up reframe those rough days. Remember this:

Frustration is the father of progress

So here’s how to make the most of a rough day:

  • Be thankful. Thankful for your job, your ability to provide a service and/or product, your ability to do a job. It all starts here.
  • Realize what you did accomplish. There is never a day that passes that you didn’t accomplish a single thing. You may have just maintained or put out fires, but those issues were resolved with your help. Recognize that.
  • Review what happened. Was there a broken system that created issues? A demanding customer that drove the agenda? A boss that trumped priorities without regard for the work you had? Look closely at what caused those issues. Start to look for solutions and initiate the steps to smooth out those rough spots.
  • Take the time to learn from the day. There is always things to learn every day. Customer’s demands may create a path for your unique skills to assure them to continue business with you. Communication gaps may shows you how you can fill in those voids. Find a way to learn and grow in each challenge you experienced.
  • Generate the motivation to change. All change comes from motivation, wanting to progress and improve upon the day before. Stoke that passion inside you to make things better, create a better reputation, enhance your company and the customer experience. Take your frustrations and turn them into a positive motivator to bolster your career aspirations while improving your value to your incumbent company. Motivate yourself to affect positive change.
  • Laugh and be positive. There is always a bright spot to each day. Have you ever laughed at the craziness of life sometimes? Or found that some days, while grueling, you couldn’t do anything but smile?  Find the bright, and comical, spots in your day and make those some of your last thoughts. End each day on a lighter note.

Great attitudes in response to rough days are in our power to exhibit daily. Even more so, if determined for the day, our frame of mind can proactively make for positive events through a difficult day. It’s up to you to set yourself up to succeed and make the most of the opportunities given to you every hour.

If you have any techniques that help you get through a rough day, feel free to share them below!

(image: gratisography)

About Paul LaRue

My goal - To encourage you to lead & influence others with positive impact.

Posted on March.9.2016, in Personal Development. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Paul I love your first tip. Be thankful! I deeply believe that one thing is the difference between darkness and light in our hearts, minds, souls and world. (Rom 1: 21 – 22)

    The rest of your list resonates as well. Learning and Laughter make such a huge difference!


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