Some days can make us feel like we need a re-boot. We have a terrible time at work, get into a disagreement with a loved one, or just do not feel connected to life. Rather than trying to push and fake our ways through the rest of those days, we might have been better served by hitting the metaphoric restart button. Here are some ways that you can refresh yourself, and maybe get your day back onto a positive track.
Exercise is good for nearly everything, and one of the key components to a healthy life. Whether your day is challenging or fantastic, vigorous exercise can refresh you in all the best ways. Exercise increases energy levels, boosts the metabolism, and inspires mental clarity. It also increases the production of feel-good endorphins and other brain chemicals, which can give us the feeling of restarting our days.
2. Take Some Deep Breaths
Deep breathing oxygenates the blood, clears the mind, and feeds the cells. This promotes energy, helps us think and process more efficiently, and improves our mood. It also helps us be more present, feeling and sensing life as it actually is in this moment then we can more clearly perceive the positive aspects of our lives, not just our challenges.
Meditation also clears and focuses the mind. If your head is spinning with your to-do list, worries, excitements, or needs, taking even a few minutes to consciously quiet the mind will do wonders to set your head on straight. You can focus on a candle flame, a beautiful image, or even simply your breath.
4. Drink Water
Fatigue and irritation are some of the leading symptoms of dehydration. If you are having trouble thinking and speaking clearly, or just feel generally lethargic, a tall glass (or three) of water just might do the trick. Indoor environments often increase dehydration because of all the electromagnetism, so if you work in an office with lots of equipment you are especially at risk for dehydration.
5. Clean Something
Nothing says brand new day like a freshly cleaned stack of dishes or a scrubbed tub. Cleaning can be a form of moving mindfulness, helping to clear the mind while also being productive. And the feeling of accomplishment from having completed a task can give you a great boost to tackle a more nebulous project.
6. Take a Strategic Nap
Sometimes it helps to literally restart your day by going back to bed (or a couch, or even your yoga mat) for a little bit. The secret to effective naps is timing. The best times to nap are between 11am and 5pm. An ideal nap is between 20 and 45 minutes. Any longer than that and the body starts to go into an REM state, and interrupting that cycle can actually make you feel more tired than before the nap. So set a timer, cover your eyes, and prepare to (re) launch.
7. Entrain Your Brain
This is still a relatively new practice, but there is some promising evidence that using binaural beats to entrain brain wave frequencies can improve mental clarity. There are many apps and CDs available that can tune your brain to different frequencies. Look for one specifically designed to be a type of restart they will usually move through a sequence of beta, alpha, and theta brain way frequencies. You have to listen to these sounds through headphones, because it is hearing the alternating tones through both ears that produces the brain entrainment effects.
Sometimes you just gotta sing the Blues, or jazz, rock, pop, show tunes, whatever makes you happy. Singing inspires both deep breathing and emotional release. It stimulates the production of endorphins and helps balance the nervous system. And it can be a kind of energetic catharsis, clearing whatever might be stuck inside us to allow us to view life with fresh eyes.
Dance is another expressive art that can inspire renewal. It combines the benefits of mild exercise and creative improvisation. It can help to move stuck energy while also helping you stay young and vitalized.
10. Look for the Blessings
The last way to have a new day is to not try to change your day at all. Instead, shift your perception. Look for reasons to be grateful for what you are actually experiencing at the moment. Sometimes our challenges and disappointments are actually great blessings in disguise. What can you learn from your present bad day? How can you choose gratitude for what you are experiencing in each moment?
We all have challenging moments. Sometimes it can be so easy to get stuck in mental loops, or just feel overwhelmed by or unenthused by life. But there are many ways to hit your personal reset button, and restart your day with more breath, more energy, and more gratitude.