Why do we have bad days

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

What is a bad day?

So you were feeling good one day and then you just found yourself feeling bad the next day.

What happened here exactly?
And what caused that sudden shift of mood?

Bad days happen when a major event ruins our mood greatly that we start to see everything else in a negative way.
When i talked about perception psychology i said that the way we see the world greatly affects our mood and emotions.

Once one event puts us into a negative mood we will start to look at all other events from a negative angle. Shortly we will encounter so many negative things just because we are focused on them and as a result we will have a bad day. See You get what you focus on.

As the negative events start increasing, at least according to our perception, our day becomes a very bad day.
As you noticed the main cause of the bad day was that initial event that led to this negative thinking cycle. See The snowball effect

Why do we have bad days

Now in order to understand bad days we need to look at the type of events that trigger this negative mood that affects us the whole day.

Here are the most common causes of bad days:

  • 1) Short term problems: If you had a fight with someone, broke your phone or got very stressed for any reason then your perception might change to the negative and your day might become bad
  • 2) Reminders of long term problems: This is one of the most popular causes of bad days. If you have a long term problem that you didn't solve then at any point of time a reminder of this problem can ruin your day. When i talked earlier about mood swings i said that they happen when something reminds you of an already existing problem that you aren't trying to solve
  • 3) Bad dreams: Believe it or not, bad dreams can cause bad days. Even if you don't remember the bad dream you might wake up feeling bad and then see everything from a negative angle throughout the day. See Feeling bad when waking up
  • 4) Bad data: Everyday we collect so many pieces of data about the world and about ourselves. A bad piece of data can make us very upset and can easily make our day a bad one.

How to deal with bad days

As you just saw sometimes it's impossible to avoid a bad event that triggers the bad day. But the good news is that you can still prevent this event from making your day a bad one.

First of all you need to come up with a quick action plan to handle this problem that happened as soon as it happens. In my book The 5 Minute Happiness Formula i said that sometimes all your mind needs in order to make you feel good is some kind of reassurance that you are going to handle the current problems.

Next you need to fix any perception errors that might happen throughout the day by using proper self talk. Through the use of self talk you must let yourself see the events that happen correctly so that you don't consider them negative as well.

Finally you need to do your best to do something good on that day because just like a single negative event can make the day a negative day a single positive event can also make the day a good day.

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