Getting through a bad day: When nothing feels good, be a robot

My idea for today is that if nothing feels good, just be a robot.
When you’re having a bad day, on a day when things don’t feel right, I try to simply take care of automatic tasks.
It’s easy to get into a kind of spiral where I feel bad, and then I feel bad about feeling bad, so I wonder why, why am I feeling bad?
Why does my life not feel good?
What’s wrong?
Okay, something is bad, and so I feel bad about not feeling good, and then why don’t I feel good?
And then it really feeds on itself.
So something that I find useful is to simply say to myself- to be OK with not feeling good every day.
I have a bad day, I don’t feel good that day, it’s okay.
I ask myself, what are the mechanical routine procedures that I have to do?
Basic self-care, basic maintenance, basic responsibilities that I have to take care of.
And I make the goal of my day to take care of those basic responsibilities, so that I can finish the day in an acceptable strong position and be ready for the next day.
And it’s hard to let myself be OK with this as a goal, because it’s so minimal.
It feels really like a step back.
All the things that I want to accomplish and work on and advance in the day.
But some days it’s just about breaking even and getting through the day, and that is the challenge.
Because on a really bad day, if I feel my morale flagging, my motivation is low, I’m not animated with purpose, I’m haunted with anxiety, these days I am- I feel a danger of falling into self-destructive behaviours, bad habits, escape behaviours.
Certainly that’s when escapism calls and has the loudest, strongest, most convincing call, is when we don’t want to face the difficult reality of the day, so the lure of pleasant, comforting, soothing, escape in all its forms is an appealing alternative.
And we have to then apply all the strategies that we have to remember to stay on course and say, no, that that escape is a false pleasure, a false comfort, that will only temporarily mask the discomfort of the moment and will make the next day harder.
So we must simply do the basics.
Take care of eating, exercise, and even if it’s just simply going for a walk, getting that fresh air and that stretching of the legs and the change of scenery.
Basic hygiene and physical maintenance.
And in the end, simply preparing conditions for a good night’s sleep.
Very basic stuff, and on a typical day it really seems insignificant, but on a difficult day, on a day where energy is low and mindset is far from ideal, achieving these basic things is victory.
It is an achievement to go through a day with basic functions taken care of and destructive behaviours avoided.
So that’s why I sometimes look at it as being a robot, being a machine, and saying okay, I will take care of these basic tasks.
It’s okay.
Not every day in life is going to give that expansive, wonderful feeling of seizing life.
Though we have that potential every day, it’s not going to happen every day.
So on the hard days, we just get through it and be ready to fight another day.
Now, of course, if this is something that is repeating for many days, then there’s clearly another issue that must be addressed.
We cannot simply carry on as machines indefinitely.
But when these- these days that come, there is a time and a place for reducing everything to this very basic level.
Take care of the simplest things, get through the day intact, get a night’s sleep and start tomorrow.
Take stock of the situation, move on from there.

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