Why I Don’t Believe in Having a Bad Day

Why I Don’t Believe in Having a Bad Day

So you’re having a bad day. You spilled your coffee, you messed up at work, and you argued with your partner.  When you’re having a day like to this, it’s tempting to say you’re having a “bad day.”  But I’m going to challenge you on this.  Because I don’t believe in having a bad day.  Watch the video to find out what the heck I’m talking about.  Plus, learn what you can do differently the next time a bad day strikes!



The title of this video, “Why I Don’t Believe in Having a Bad Day,” might suggest that I only believe in having good or great days.  Or that I’m all about rainbows and sunshine and over the top positive thinking.  (Insert unicorn emoji here.)  But rest assured, that’s not what I’m selling, and that’s not what we’re talking about.


This video is about the language you use when you’re having bad day.  Because without realizing it, calling it a “bad day,” just makes things worse.


As a human, your brain is wired to focus on the negative.  (See why here.)  We give the negative stuff way more attention than we give the positive stuff.  That’s just part of being a human.  We’re wired that way.


This means that when you’re having a bad day, your brain is going to give a lot more attention to the negative stuff, rather than the positive or neutral stuff.


Why I Don’t Believe in Having a Bad Day, Dr. Allison Answers


Let’s break this down.  Say you have 100 moments throughout your day.  (You actually have way more than 100 moments, but I’m keeping it simple for math’s sake.)  Out of those 100 moments, let’s say five are pretty sucky.  You spill your coffee, you get stuck in traffic, you sent an email with an error in it, you were short with your partner, and your forgot your lunch at home.  No doubt about it, these five things are kind of crappy.


But what about the other 95 moments?  Were they all terrible?  Were they all bad?  No.  These other 95 moments were positive, neutral, or somewhere in between.  So why is it, that at the end of that day, you come home and say, “I had a bad day”?  We’re talking about five moments out of 100.  If you do the math, that’s just five percent.


So why does an entire day get coded as “bad” when only a fraction of the day was tough?  When we use this rigid language of good and bad, we’re oversimplifying and misrepresenting the events of the day.


So here’s the deal.  We don’t really have good or bad days.  We have days.  And these days involve positive, negative, and neutral events.  By saying that you’re having a bad day, you’re falling into your brain’s trap of giving more weight and attention to the negative.


So when you hear yourself commenting on how you’re having a bad day, I want you to stop, take a breath, and use that phrase as a cue.  Ask yourself, “Was every moment of today bad?  Was everything terrible?”


Your words matter. They have the power to create a new reality.  So pay attention to what you say, and get intentional with how you talk about your day.  I think you’ll find that your days aren’t nearly as bad as you think!

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