How to Cope with Having a Bad Day at Work

Many articles suggesting ways to cope with a bad day at work speak about the day as if it is over and you have gone home to curl up fetal position on your bed and forget everything. What about those days at work when everything goes wrong but you can't drop the ball and you can't scream at people "Go away!"? Those are the times when you really need coping mechanisms that give you nerves of steel to overcome the desire to shrink into a tiny ball and run away. This article provides some suggestions for coping with the bad day as it unfurls.


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    Deal with the pressure crunch. Accept that nobody is a "super-person" and that mistakes happen when too much is attempted at any one time. Don't take to heart the mistakes that get made when juggling too much under time constraints; they are bound to happen.
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    Get the right person doing the right thing. If reformatting is stumping you, a legal issue has arisen and the support staff are whining about the milk supply all at once, it isn't a good idea to be their answer, at least not there and then. Delegate immediately to those best able to respond. You don't need to be a manager to delegate - cross-delegate to those colleagues who are clearly able to deal with the issues.
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    Go the bathroom and have a good "fit". Whether it's a good cry, sitting, deep breathing, stretching, or an air punch, get it all out in privacy. If this means going to the bathroom several flights above or below where nobody knows you, do it! If not the bathroom, take a 5 - 10 minute break outdoors and away from the place.
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    Ask for help. Don't wallow in self-pity thinking the world is crumbling around you. If you don't understand something, don't want to do something or find something harder than you expected, it is not a shameful thing to ask for help. That is what others are there for. What people do hate is when a person neglects to seek help and then stuffs up.
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    Go home early where warranted. If a day is bad because you brought a bundle of home issues with you, sometimes nothing will turn that around. For some people, work is an escape from home issues but sometimes even for them, the enormity of something happening in your personal life is too large for work to help you forget. If you feel exhausted, teary, distressed and liable to explode and say inappropriate things, it is probably a good idea to call it a day and go home and sort issues out.
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    Don't take snide comments to heart. If you are having a bad day because someone said something nasty to you, grin and bear it. It is important to not over-inflate the unhelpful or rude observations of colleagues who have a clear agenda to be disruptive, hurtful or unkind. Ask them to explain themselves if this feels appropriate and ask what it is you could do better according to them. But don't let this fester and make your day rotten.
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    Talk to people. Just learn how to express your feelings to them. Burst it out, otherwise hatred will be keep in yours forever.
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    Accept the fact that is not that everyday is your lucky day. However choose to be happy.


  • only concentrate on what you are doing to improve yourself. Don't waste your time to think how to please your others or co-workers.
  • There is no shame in changing career streams. If you have constant bad days because you feel out of your depth or you lack interest, it may be due to the fact that you made a bad career choice for your thinking type. Seek counseling assistance on career changes if this is the real underlying reason.
  • If you keep having a string of bad days, it is likely you need to consider a new job where your self-esteem or enjoyment of it is not constantly battered.
  • Remember tomorrow will be better and you will probably have a better perspective on things than today.
  • Life is all about doing things you don't want to do. So if you want to go anywhere in this world then suck it up an tell yourself that it's not going to kill you and keep going.

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Categories: Job Strategies