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Having A Bad Day? 5 Ways to Improve Your Mood

So you’re having a bad day. Man, that sucks. Sorry to hear that. If you don’t have someone to pep you up right when you need it most, well, like everything else, the burden is on you. Here are ways to improve your mood when you’re having a bad day.


1. Throw Yourself a Pity Party for One.

Why not? You deserve it (I guess). Find a soft place to land, shake your fist at the universe, drop a few ugly tears, punch a pillow, use the choice words of your choice, and then…

2. Indulge.

After you’ve lamented and allowed yourself to feel as low as you’re willing to go, now’s the time to reconnect with your inner child and ask him or her what is needed to make the boo-boo better. Do you need chocolate? Binge-watching your favorite show? Retail therapy (window-shopping style)? A quick trip to your favorite restaurant?

Do something that you know will bring those happy endorphins back to the surface. Let it be in moderation, and let it serve as a reminder to you that you can still be happy, even in this bad day moment.

3. Remember: A Day Lasts Only 24-Hours.

No more, no less. Even when you just want to roll over in a corner and wait for this day to end, just remember that no matter what you do, the day will end. Eventually, the clock will strike 12 and a new day will begin.

Will the fact that a new day has begun eradicate the pain and damage that the bad day had wrought? Of course not. Don’t be silly. But the truth remains – the only way to heal or recover from any setback, no matter how large or small, is to take things one day at a time.

4. Reach Out.

This may sound a bit counterintuitive, but hear me out. When you feel like total crap, of course somewhere in the recesses of your mind, you’ll likely hear a voice reminding you that others have it worse.

Meh. In the age of the almighty Selfie, that voice may be very weak.

Instead, just go ahead think about yourself. (Yes, I said that.) You know you want to do that anyway, so just go ahead and do it. Think about how good YOU will feel when you do something positive or helpful for someone else. It’s up to you to decide how to do it. Sure, the easiest ways often involve money, but not as much as you may think.

Remember the “Pay It Forward” concept? In one example, one guy paid for the burger combo for the guy behind him, and then that guy paid for the woman behind him and so on until there was a chain of folks just eating burgers and making others happy. (Alright, a huge part of me wants to know who the person was who stopped the chain and said, “A free meal? Cool, thanks.” And moved on. Which was also totally okay.)

Anyway, you know what I mean. While you’re indulging on your treat of choice (see #2), maybe see if you can share it with someone else. It’s a scientific fact that making others feel positive makes your thoughts more positive as well.


This part is always the hardest part. It’s so easy to get caught up in self-pity (#1), and kind hover between steps 1 and 2. But you don’t want to remain in an insect pattern, because you may never get out of it.

Start looking for a way to improve your disposition, situation, outlook on things, etc. You don’t have to do this alone. Even if you haven’t got someone near who can’t get past thinking about themselves, there are resources that anyone can use for free in the US. With a quick Google search, I found these two resources:

One Bad Day Does Not Define You

We all have bad days. I know that I had one yesterday. My husband and parents were super supportive and made sure to call me and talk to me throughout the day to reassure me that I’m not alone, I’m loved, and supported. Of course, that helps me move forward at a much faster pace than having to go at it completely alone. But in the end, moving forward and making sure that the one bad day is just an isolated event is what should define you, not the setback itself.

Wishing you the best of days, and even better ones to come!

Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2018 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, writing. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest for more.


Romantic Thoughts Thursday: Embrace One Another

“We are each of us angels with only one wing, and we can only fly by embracing one another.”

– Luciano de Crescenzo


Sending Love and Light to all of you.

©Atina Atwood 2018 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time.™

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest for more.

Let Go, or Be Dragged

The moment of truth has finally arrived.

My university sent a work offer to me for the 2018-2019 academic year, and I actually turned it down.

This is so incredibly scary, and knowing that the odds of quantifiable success in the Creative Arts are against me makes this an even more terrifying decision, but despite the anxiety and the huge bitter dose of reality (OMG, am I really going to do this???), I know without a sliver of doubt in my mind that I have made the right decision. Still, although I’ve declined the university’s offer, I do intend to initiate some sort of way to bring in additional income besides my writing, which I’m sure will make quite a few interesting blog entires.

My hubby and I have had so many talks about this, and on Father’s Day, he said one particular thing that really resonated with me. He looked me in the eye and said, “You’re an artist. You absolutely have to create. If you don’t, you get physically ill until you’re doing something creative again. As much as you keep trying to convince yourself to go a traditional route, something inside you is always going to resist. Why not take a chance and just follow your calling?”

After hearing such heartfelt words of truth, naturally I briefly bawled like a baby, and then I fought the urge to eat an ice-cream sandwich because I’m in the middle of a 3-day juice cleanse (more on that later). Without a doubt, I’ve been aware of all of those things that he expressed for a long time. To be honest, he’s been encouraging me to “go for it” for the past 5 years. Nevertheless, I’ve been purposely holding myself back. Yes, I’ve written 5 novels in that amount of time, but always on the side, almost as an afterthought. But, dear readers, hold onto your seats: At the beginning of this month, I actually bit the bullet and formally started my own business. This rollercoaster ride is now official.

Yes, I know the statistics about the frequency of small businesses failing, and I know that this won’t be easy. But even if it fails to generate ‘substantial’ cash flow, I already know that this venture will not be a failure. This is an experience that I simply have to go through, and as my husband so eloquently stated in one brilliant moment, as an artist, I simple must create.

For those of you who understand the struggle, calling yourself an artist isn’t the least bit conceited. Actually, it isn’t even a compliment, really. It’s a public confession that you are a person who is a servant of Expression, addicted to communicating, and is an incurable optimist who can’t let go of things like hope, love, or sentimentality – despite the fact that the number one driving force in the world of “success” is monetary gain.

There is a Zen proverb that says “Let go, or be dragged.” This is exactly what my head and heart are saying now. If I continue to work this dead-end career that brings me less and less fulfillment year after year, then it will continue to bring me down; not only emotionally, but physically as well. So, the only logical solution is the let go. (Why do you think that song from Frozen was such a success? Straight up sound advice.)

Image: Source

So, Lovies – here goes. Fingers crossed!

After the initial celebratory “Wow, that’s awesome! You’re so brave!” conversations, the real questions will start to come up. Far too often these days, people start popping up with fantastic ideas and amazing energy; yet after a month or so, the excitement starts to wane, and then the honeymoon is over. As in a real marriage, starting your own business as a writer, even initially part-time (which is a smart thing to do), is something that takes real commitment. We all know that anything called a “part-time” job only means that less $$$ lands in your pocket – by no means does it indicate less work on your end!

I’ve decided to concentrate on what I consider to be the basics, and I’ll be more than happy to share what they are in future posts.

For now, I’m going to enjoy a few moments of relaxation and solitude, add to my ever-growing list of Things That Must Be Done, and CTFD. Seriously. If you could feel the excitement in my words right now, you would think that I’m some sort of toddler who just can’t sit still for anything. It’s always easy to talk about things that you want to do, and it’s often fun to dream about them; but to really look yourself in the mirror, make the decision to turn a dream into a goal AND THEN GO FOR IT is something that really should be celebrated.

Being a highly-critical psudo-perfectionist, I have extreme difficulty accepting praise and being content with my work. This is one of the prominent disadvantages of being a classically trained vocalist. There’s always one more tweak, one level higher to aim for. Because I know that I’ll never completely eradicate that aspect of my personality (and for many reasons, I don’t even want to), I am learning to accept more zen-like perspectives and adapt them into my daily life.

Let go, or be dragged. 

How many times have you had an inner conflict that led you to just want to walk away from it all, but something always held you back from taking that final step? Obviously, I’ve been there. I’ve just overcome the paralysis (again). This step is probably just as crazy as when I left all that I knew and loved in the United States to be with the man I loved (and still do) in Europe. I was scared to death, terrified of the unknown, but it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I can only hope and pray that this one will also lead me to more joy, happiness, and contentment. And any financial windfall that comes about would be welcomed, too. 😉

My last words of advice are pretty simple: Let your bravery dictate your next actions, and not the other way around.

©Atina Atwood 2018 Exploring Love and Life, One Word At A Time

– Atina Atwood is a southern girl who moved from Europe to the West Coast. A former university professor in Germany and California, Atina stepped away from Academia to focus on her miracle child, life, love, food, quilting, and of course, Romance. 

You – Your Best Novel

I’ve always heard, “Do one thing, and do it well.” This seems to be a common word of advice for those who seek “success” from the greats spanning over centuries. Unfortunately for me, this advice just doesn’t compute; my heart rebels against the supposed logic.

I just can’t understand how so many people view many things as being “either/or” instead of “this and this”. Why in the world do we limit ourselves, especially in this age of mass-consumption? I for one would love to overindulge on the things that make me feel wonderful and happy on this planet, and enable me to bring joy and positivity to others in the process.

For some people, maybe there’s also something satisfying about doing more than one thing simultaneously.  Besides, when you look more closely at the biographies of all of these greats, you’ll see that most of the time, only in RETROSPECT does it appear as though they took a linear path to reach the moment when they achieved success.

Believe me, even the greatest had to go through the process of figuring things out. They couldn’t have all been stellar 24/7 throughout their entire lives. No, they had ups and they had downs; they encountered times of doubt and confusion just like all of us. The things that make them stand out are the times when they felt like we often do when we’re not feeling so brilliant. What did the greats do in those times? They persevered. They kept going. Did they know where they were going? Of course not! But they knew where they wanted to be.

Think about it: No one really wants a biography that lasts only a page or two. You want your life to fill an entire book! Every single experience that we have, mistake that we make, or dream that we discover, pursue, and attempt to fulfill is yet another page in our own individual biography.

May every entry that you make be filled with adventure, courage, lessons, and love.

Be Cool, Baby. Be Cool.

So, I just need to put this here for myself more than for anyone else. It’s so strange to move from an age where dreams totally felt like they were just pending goals to be accomplished, to a state of being where reality tries to stab the heart of every dream I desperately hold on to.

Maybe it’s me getting older, or perhaps it’s merely the fact that I’ve always been a “realistic optimist”, but the truth remains – sometimes it’s just too damn hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Who knows? Maybe there’s a cave-in or a detour right before you get to the end of it.

Still, my radiant inner child refuses to be laid low; she keeps telling me to BELIEVE. The hope in my heart is worth the struggle, the doubt, confusion, and constantly hearing the pitiful lie that my darkest voice whispers in my thoughts – I’ve let myself and everyone else down by insisting upon following this one persistent dream.

It takes a Herculean effort to squash the doubt and weariness in my heart, to slap yet another “What if…” directly in the face with an “I can do all things through Christ…” reminder. It’s hard to get back up, find motivation and be inspired when your most influential 24/7 365 cheering team member consists only of the person staring back at you in the mirror.

It’s lonely, it’s hard. It’s scary, and it’s inevitable.

Perhaps you know what I mean when I talk about the feeing of compulsion. No matter what the odds are, and even if I stand alone, this is something that I MUST do. It’s the path that I have to take in order to feel as close to fulfillment in this life as I can imagine. So I may as well finally get over being so damn angsty about my life and just be f-ing cool about it. It’s time to wrap this frigging series up; the clock is ticking.

Be cool, baby. Be cool.

The Warrior Within

Sometimes, there are aspects of our personalities that can either be a Godsend or a hendrance; it all depends on the situation. For me, I find that managing my inner warrior is a HUGE challenge.
First of all, the problem is that over the past few years, I've actually felt somehow obligated to tamper down aspects my strong personality and intellect. So many insecurities and subtle manipulative pressures encouraged me to be, well, less me.

The result as been disastrous, a pitiful attempt to crush my own spirit when my soul continuously demands to sing, to be heard, to communicate. It's my calling to use my words to connect with as many people on this planet as I can, and instead of listening to it, I've been hiding from myself and have been mad at the world for not taking the time to search for me.

It's a good feeling to rediscover my innate talents, embrace my raw imperfections, the very fallacies that make me so vulnerable and bring-it-on at the same time. No, I'm not perfect, but I OWN my shortcomings. Surely, I recognize them, and I strive to improve myself daily, but I will not – and should not – feel obligated to apologize for simply being human.

For the longest time, I've tried to convince myself that the Warrior within me lay dormant, sleeping under the sedative effects of self-inflicted suppression. Now, I know that she has always been awake, wide awake – but simply biding her time and growing stronger. 

I'm not quite certain what battles lie ahead, but for now, I'm content knowing that at the moment, I'm no longer battling myself.

Bubbles in Berkeley

For the child in all of us.

We spent hours entertaining our toddler child and niece by blowing bubbles. The most beautiful part was seeing the pure joy on their faces, and hearing their innocent, highly contagious giggles.

The best part was when those bubbles would float to random adults in the area. Just seeing how each person burst into smiles or even laughter was so heartening.

We might try to suppress our inner child, but that little one is always ready to make a reappearance. Why fight it?

Letting Go

In so many ways, it can be a good thing. Letting go. It sounds so simple to me, so freeing and light. I tend to associate letting go with the elements – earth, wind, fire, water. It's cleansing the mind, body, and spirit at the same time. 

In preparation for our big move, I am able to let go of so many things in ways that I hadn't really anticipated while packing. Things that once held such significance for me in previous years barely register as being relevant to my life now. On the other hand, there are other things, small items like a butterfly clip or a little keychain, that carry with them so much love and memories; I will not ever let them go. 

I think that in my next stand-alone novel, I want to explore the challenge and the freedom of letting go. Love has a tendency to present the opportunity to "let go" in so many relationships, both platonic and romantic. I'm excited to see where this goes. 


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