You’ve had a shitty day. Your card got declined. You read a mean comment about yourself online. You ordered pizza instead of eating the bag of wilting salad in the fridge drawer. And then, to top it all off, you didn’t go to the gym because you were in a food coma, drowning in a sea of blankets, sofa cushions and Netflix.
We ALL hate those days and we all have those days.
Here’s how to fix it and make yourself feel like the glittering version of yourself – y’know the one you see strutting past in shop reflections and you’re all ‘oh hello, you sassy mumma’. Yeah, that one.
1. HOT RIBENA
Just trust me on this one, it has all sorts of magical healing powers.
2. A GOOD HOODIE
Or a sweatshirt, if you’re hip and happening and sporting sweatshirts for fashion purposes. There’s something very weird about the way I pick my jumper of choice during a bad mood, it’s normally an old classic, maybe something with sentimental value (like my Grand Canyon sweater or Kingston University hoodie) rather than the cheap Primark one I picked up to wear to the gym.
Moral of the story: You should always have a GOOD sweatshirt or hoodie ready for when you need fixing. Like a special one.
3. DISNEY FILMS
Sometimes you don’t want to concentrate on being an adult or anything associated with being an adult because y’know what? Being an adult doesn’t involve nearly half as many slides and dens as you’d kinda hoped.
There’s something about Disney films (and HP, obvs) that transports you to a whole other place, away from your own life. A fantasy world that’ll let you escape your own dramas if only for an hour or two, and that’s pretty damn ace.
4. WRITING IT OUT
You can blog about whatever’s weighing your mind down, sure, or you can write just for yourself.
I rarely write for my own eyes anymore, but I have a diary which has an entry every few months when I don’t want anyone else to see my inner thoughts, my fears, my sometimes irrational beliefs. I want to get the words, feelings and emotions out on paper so that I can make sense of them and start to understand myself, away from the prying eyes of the internet, and boy, does it feel good.
If I’m having one of those hearty cries, I feel like the writing down of my emotions is the thing that makes me stop and slowly pull myself together to move forward with my life. I hugely recommend it. Plus, it’s a great excuse to snap up a new Paperchase notebook.
5. CHICKEN BROTH
If there’s one thing you should learn to cook in your life – it’s this (or y’know, buy some chicken soup from the shop, but we both know it’s not the same).
Chicken broth with those reaaaaally thin noodles was something my grandmother used to make me a lot and so it reminds me of being little. For best results, leave your broth (essentially chicken thighs/legs OR a whole chicken and hot water and celery and onion and seasoning) gently brewing on a low heat over several hours.
Life: Instantly better. Especially good if that’s thing’s happened where you can’t breathe out of your nose. Sob.
6. SOFT LIGHTING
This one’s actually one of my most important ones because there’s nothing that says relax and repair your brain the way a flickering candle or good side lamp does. Or fairy lights, they’re good too. Either way, dim the lights and set yourself a soothing atmosphere.
Except not the ones that talk about themselves and how much harder their lives are compared to yours, ain’t nobody got time for that.
8. WATCHING THE SEA
A classic Hannah Gale favourite from back in the day when I actually lived next to the sea. In the summer, in the winter, in the morning or at night, there’s nothing that helps settle your mind and piece together your thoughts the way the sea can.
It just reminds you of how small you are in the world and of how small your problems are. And somehow it always gives you an answer, an obvious route to take to move forward.
9. FABRIC CONDITIONER
Hear me out, alright.
You know when you pick something up, maybe a jumper or a scarf or blanket or summin that’s just been through the wash and it smells really strongly of fabric conditioner and it makes your insides all happy? Well, just that. It’s heavenly and instantly pleases the soul.
I wish I was well practiced enough in the art of clothes washing that I could recommend a stellar fabric conditioner to you, but alas not. Maybe ask your mum or nan, it’s such a mum-nan thing to know which fabric conditioners smell better than a field of flowers.
10. DRIVES WITHOUT A DESTINATION
Unless the destination is McDonald’s for a McFlurry, that’s A-OK.
These were my absolute favourite when I was 18/19. Those drives with friends that didn’t necessary lead anywhere. The ones that could take up an entire evening, the ones full of gossip and LOLZ and parking up in random car parks.
Except if you’re feeling really emotional and all over the place then maybe, y’know, don’t be the designated driving-for-no-reason driver.
No, but for real. Unless it’s like 30 degrees outside (hello UK right now), a good pair of socks will help take the edge off. I often find I can’t get comfy on the sofa or in bed if I’m in that lazy CANNOT-DO-ANYTHING mood that actually it’s because I’m just a teeny tiny bit colder than optimal nap/chilling on the sofa temperature and socks sort me out a real treat. Or, go one step sexier and go for slippers. Nothing says comfort and done for the day than slippers, nope.
12. TOAST WITH BUTTER
But like, real butter, not margarine. Or crumpets, actually YES, definitely crumpets. There’s something that seriously takes the edge off the world and all the feels about warm, soft carbs and butter.
13. BEAUTY TREATMENTS
Any of them. A manicure, a face mask, a friendly massage. Do it at home in front of the TV or treat yo self and get pampered.
14. TAYLOR SWIFT
All I’m saying is ‘Style’ is one of the only songs in the world that can make me continue running when I feel like giving up. When in doubt: listen to Taylor Swift, Instagram stalk Taylor Swift’s cats and pretend you’re Taylor Swift. Easy.
Eurgh, I know – so obvious, but a winner. There’s something so nice about soaking the day and all its stresses off your skin and starting again. Just make sure you don’t do that thing where you make the bath a teeny tiny bit too cold, that’s horrible.