We all have bad days at work. Here's some top tips to overcome them and what to do if they keep happening.

How To Overcome a “Bad Day” at Work

We can all empathise with that feeling of having a bad day at work, it happens from time to time and it’s okay. But there are a few ways you can conquer the feeling of a “bad day” before it has an effect on your work productivity or your mental health in the workplace.

Acknowledge negative feelings

Sometimes, when we experience a bad day, we unconsciously change our outlook on life, changing what once were positive outcomes into negative thoughts and feelings, causing our intent to not match our output. Here are some examples;

  • Being competitive on a good day could be perceived as aggressive and overbearing on a bad day
  • Being social and dynamic could be perceived as frantic
  • Being analytical and precise could be perceived as picky and indecisive
  • Being considerate and encouraging could be perceived as slow-paced

Psychology says that we’re not conscious of this ‘darker side’ that appears when we experience a bad day. We believe the negative consequences of our actions are fate, however, if we acknowledge these feelings independently we become consciously aware of the situation allowing us to combat the issue head-on.

Develop self-awareness

Self-awareness helps people understand what they are good at, not so good at, and how their actions can be perceived by others.

Once you know what you’re good at, and how you appear to others, you can adjust your behaviours and approach to achieve the outcomes you seek. That also means you’re more likely to build positive, lasting relationships, increase productivity, and achieve your goals.

Invest In self-development

Self-development will help you build the skills and capabilities to know when you are heading for a bad day and what to do about it.

Triggers of stress and pressure will be experienced differently but could lead to you experiencing a bad day. Some different triggers might be:

  • When decisions aren’t being made and there’s no clear goal
  • When there’s no space to explore possibilities and share new ideas
  • When things are sprung on them or when team harmony is disrupted
  • When there isn’t time to go through the details and it’s all go, go, go.

Ask for feedback

Feedback can be a gift when offered in the right way, encourage colleagues to tell you how they like to work and listen when around you. This can help you learn more about yourself through the eyes of others, improve any rough edges, do what you great at more often and reduce the likelihood of being derailed by bad days.

If you’re having more than just the odd bad day at work, it could be time for a change. Check out our guide to considering whether it’s the right time to quit your job.

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