6 creative ways to survive a bad day

movie party
My kids in their tent ready to watch a movie.

With all the planning and strategies in the world, sometimes everything still manages to fall apart.  Maybe a big problem comes along, but most often it is the little things that add up to the point of becoming overwhelming — lack of sleep, spilled milk, siblings fighting, whining, a broken vase, flour dumped all over the floor.

There are days I can handle those things well, and there are days it all falls apart.  On days it all falls apart, these are some ideas to reset your emotions and the tone of your home.

Make a music playlist

Music has the ability to change things. I have a playlist on my ipod that tends to change my mood, not always, but it certainly helps. What kind of music can change the tone for you? Think outside your normal choices.

Mine starts off with “I Will Survive” from Gloria Gaynor. Singing that song with a dramatic flair tends to drain the tension of the moment. It changes the tone for my kids as well, because they have to dance when I play that song.

Declare a pajama day or movie party

Sometimes you just have to scrap the plans you had and change course. When I declare a movie party, it is a stinking big deal in our house. The kids put on their pajamas and bring down their pillows and stuffed animals (maybe their sleeping bag); we move the coffee table out of the way and turn on a movie.

Maybe if I am feeling generous I will make some popcorn or find another snack, but often times just the pajamas and movie is enough to make everyone excited. It also gives me time to sit and relax.

Eat something unexpected

Again, this is another one where changing the normal routine is key. Instead of making the dinner you planned, do something unexpected. One of my favorite childhood memories is when we ate strawberry shortcake for dinner once a year. So have dessert for dinner.  I know, it goes against everything we normally say about healthy eating,  but once a year won’t kill anyone.

A friend recently made funnel cakes for dinner … now you tell me her kids aren’t going to think she is awesome. If that is too much for you, just eat dessert first. Have your meal backwards. Have pancakes for dinner — whatever. It’s really about changing the norm.

Take a shower

I don’t know why, but sometimes if I am feeling out of control, taking a 10-minute shower can change my perspective. Turn a video on for the kids, or have them play in their rooms or crib and just take a shower. Lock the bathroom door and enjoy the peace.  For some reason, I leave the bathroom feeling much more sane.

Get out of the house

It doesn’t matter where, just get out.  Go to a park, the mall, a friend’s house, or just drive around. Go through a drive-thru and get yourself a drink.

Call or text a friend

Every mom should have a friend they can call and say, “I am losing it, talk me down.”  Just knowing that someone “gets it” and cares can really help.  I will often text my husband, but there is nothing like another mom who gets it to help you feel better.

A good friend will ignore the screaming in the background and tell you a funny story just to make you laugh. Or they will answer a text message saying they have been there and that it really is terrible.  It feels good to know you are not alone in this crazy thing called parenting.

How about you, do you have any go-to creative solutions for a bad day?  I would love to hear them!

 

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