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5 Must-Dos to Turn Around a Bad Day (and Make Your Bitter Moments Sweeter)

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5 Must-Dos to Turn Around a Bad Day (and Make Your Bitter Moments Sweeter)

I’m in New Jersey this week at my parent’s home, and it’s like I’m 16 again. There’s squabbling with my siblings, stress with my mom and, happily, lots of love too. It’s tough when multiple people move in for a few weeks, and although the house is big, we’re on top of each other.

Earlier today, I was over the edge with the way the morning was unfolding. So angry I saw red, I needed a quick fix to change my experience –  *poof* tension transformed into loving kindness. Dreams, right?

No magic pill to turn around a bad day, an hour and a large iced hazelnut coffee from Dunkin Donuts gave me time and space to cool off both literally and figuratively.

Later in the afternoon, I was a lot more chill and made a grocery store run for a family mberry tasting party. If you don’t know what mberry is, it’s a miracle berry (or in this case a tablet that dissolves on your tongue). Mberry makes sour and bitter things taste sweet and sweet things taste like they were dipped in a vat of sugar.

Limes tasted like limeade.

Tomatoes were luscious.

Grapefruit as if someone was liberal with sprinkling sugar.

Tonic water so saccharine I could only take a sip.

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Sucking on an mberry tablet, I was thinking even more about what I, and my clients, could do to take the sour moments in life and make them sweet once again.

When I was fuming, it was like a smoldering fire that quickly expanded to everyone around me and engulfed us all in negativity. At this point, there were two choices: either we’d go up in flames, or I needed to start a more positive chain reaction to turn around the day. (Did you catch that? choice…)

Bet you’ve been there too.

Something goes wrong, and you’re angry, frustrated, and even worse, ready to take it out on anyone who crosses your path. Even as it’s happening, you feel like it’s impossible to stop. Day ruined.

It does not have to be that way. You too can make another choice.

Five Must-Dos to Turn Around a Bad Day (and make your bitter moments sweeter)
 

1. Don’t Assume Your Bad Day is Unstoppable
 

When you’re a grumpster, you’ve bought into a terrible experience like it’s your destiny. One bad thing happens, then the next and by the third you know it’s coming. The forth just confirms that there’s no hope of anything good. Get real. The first step to making any change is noticing that you need to make a change. Yup – didn’t say nothing bad would happen, just that you can change even when your circumstances cannot.

2. Give Yourself Time and Space
 

The mberry tablet took a few minutes to melt on my tongue. It wasn’t instantaneous. When you’re fuming, you need a moment too. Take a walk down the hall to breathe, suck on a tic tac or play a quick round of Candy Crush. Do something that will help you to take a beat and step away from what’s triggering your negativity.

3. Pump Up the Volume 
 

Music relaxes the nervous system and propels you to make positive shifts in mind and body. When you put on music that brings you energy and joy, you start to feel energy and joy. Want to feel more relaxed and chilled out? Maybe you need some Yanni (probably not) or whatever tune fills you with peace. Pump it up even if you have to put your earphones on and create your own little music-universe.

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4. Accept a Little Sweeter is Better than Sour
 

Some of the things we tasted after our tablets melted were not remarkably different than the original until we stopped to consider what had changed. For example, I bought dill pickles for our tasting pleasure and the general comments were that they tasted like pickles, and everyone was unimpressed. However, when I pointed out that they tasted like bread and butter pickles (sweet!) everyone oohed and aahed.

Never poo-poo small changes that take you in the right direction. Not every shift will be a leap.

5. Let Go of Your Negative Expectations and Assumptions
 

You can stop your bad day when you stop assuming that the next thing that happens will be equally awful (or worse!) than the last. When you are sure about what’s yet to come, you’re creating it. Imagine that your thoughts could create your experience – positive, negative you choose. Whoa!

At our mberry tasting party, there were skeptics and others who were ready to believe that things would be different. We all knew that a pickle was still a pickle and cream cheese the same that we put on our bagels this morning. Who do you think had the biggest shift in flavor – those who accepted that it would work or those who were sure it was impossible?

Will I take another mberry tablet? Probably not. Will the experience stick with me? You bet. In fact, along with a deep breath, I’ll visualize taking a mberry for my life to bring a little more sweetness to life’s sour moments.

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