50 Things To Do on Dog Days

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Some days are bad days. Here are some good things to do on bad days:

  1. Get down and herby: Add mint leaves to green tea and add sugar or honey (and ice) for a refreshing Moroccan style drink.
  2. Dance: Do the caterpillar. Do the sit-down boogie. Do the twist. Try a plié or jive it out with a partner. Anything goes.
  3. Vitamin D: Sit outside, especially if it’s sunny. Or, run around in a torrential downpour. It’ll feel good.
  4. Dip in: Lie in bed all day with a ‘dippy box’ (a concept developed by my mother in the late nineties – a box of snack sized nibbles, usually chopped fruit, raisins, little sandwiches, cubes of cheese, chocolate biscuits, ritz crackers etc.); embrace your inner child.
  5. A novel idea: Read a whole book. Or a whole chapter. Or a whole sentence. Be proud of your progress.
  6. Perspective is everything: Lie on the floor and see the world in a new way.
  7. Snail mail: Write a letter, design a greetings card or send a post card.
  8. Pillow talk: Wriggle around under the duvet and communicate via grunts and wails.
  9. Lists, lists, lists: Read 50 ’50 Things To Do When…’ lists. Then do something that tickles your pickle.
  10. Minstrel Me: Get someone to serenade you. Or vice versa.
  11. Doctor, Doctor: Make an appointment with your Doctor to review your medication if you feel it’s not working for you. Or, if you don’t take medication but feel you want some extra support, ask to be put on the waiting list for counselling.
  12. Take drugs: Actually remember to take your medication! Or vitamins. We are just chemicals, after all.
  13. Human dartboard: Print a picture of someone who annoys you  *cough David Cameron cough* and rearrange their facial features via scissors and/or felt tips.
  14. You’re forgiven, not forgotten: Forgive yourself for something you’ve been beating yourself up about. Yes, I’m talking about that insensitive thing you said without thinking three years ago. Three years of guilt is plenty, thanks.
  15. Adult Colouring Books: Does what it says on the tin. Fair warning, may induce addiction.
  16. Cry Me A River: Let yourself cry, copiously if you need to. Listen to your crying song, think about a loved one who’s passed. It hurts and that’s ok.
  17. Smelly: Wear something that smells of someone you love.
  18.  Work with me: Take a mascot to work with you. Or wear your lucky pants.
  19. Inked: Draw on yourself with a felt tip or sharpie – design a tattoo.
  20. Talk to me, TED: Watch a TED talk. They have a mental health playlist which you might find useful.
  21. Find method in your madness: Do something methodical like testing all your pens, sharpening your pencils. Don’t think, just do.
  22. Catch 22: Exercise. Exactly what you do not want to do, I know. Try not to think of it as exercise… Wrestle with your brother, punch a pillow, or spar with a friend. Channel the frustration.
  23. Ask and you shall receive: Ask for help. Not necessarily for head stuff but for something practical. Ask your dad how best to clean your iron, or your cousin for that falafel recipe you liked.
  24. A Different Kind Of Dog: It may be a Black Dog day in your head, but how about making it a Border Collie or Golden Doodle day? Beg, borrow or steal a dog and let their love heal you.
  25. Good Samaritan: You’re not alone. Talk to the Samaritans.
  26. Say Yes: When you’re depressed, cabin fever can really exacerbate the issue so if someone invites you out for a drink, seriously consider it, even if you feel like crap. You can always go home again if you need to.
  27. Say No: Delegate responsibilities that aren’t going to happen today.
  28. Smiling’s my favourite: Make like Buddy The Elf and smile. Maybe you’ll remember that smiling’s actually your favourite.
  29. Does somebody need a hug?: You may not be an angry raccoon, but a hug probably wouldn’t go amiss. (Seriously, Buddy The Elf has all the answers)
  30. Boombox: LOUD MUSIC. I recommend Gwen Stefani, but maybe that’s just My Shit.
  31. Bad decisions: Make bad food choices. Today, mine include cookie dough ice-cream and magic stars. 0 regrets.
  32. It’ll all come out in the wash: Put on a load of washing, it’ll help you feel like you are in control of your life.
  33. 2 is a rational number: Make a list of EVERYTHING you are stressing about (this might take all day, but that’s ok!) and have a friend or partner look over it. They will be able to offer a more objective view and help eliminate some of your worries.
  34. Play dress-up: Put on something slinky or something ridiculous.
  35. A heady mix: Learn to do a 40’s style headscarf turban and slick on some red lippy. Or go for bold prints and some of these lovely headwrap ideas.
  36. Breaking in: Season a corset or break in a new pair of shoes.
  37. Fair’s fair: Exchange back massages with a friend or lover. Or, if its not in your skill set, how about you offer to make a meal for you both after your shoulder rub. Incentives!
  38. Sit in a dark room: In a cinema. With pick’n’mix or popcorn.
  39. Have a tinkle: Make an instrument of some kind and bash out a tune. If the crafty element is beyond you today, use spoons. Or a real instrument.
  40. Lyricist: Learn all the words to a song that makes you pee, like Daphne & Celeste’s ‘Ooh Stick You’. Although, to be fair, I know most of them already…
  41. Supplement this: Research alternatives to anti-depressants that you could try, like light-boxes or St John’s Wort.
  42. Back to the Future: Stop dwelling on the past and start making plans to look forward to. My husband-to-be used to call them ‘happiness islands’ when I was homesick, doing my degree in Edinburgh.
  43. Water, baby: Drink it, swim in it, walk near it, bathe in it… We are water…
  44. Food, glorious food: Order something delicious, smile at the delivery guy and devour. (The food, not the delivery guy… Unless…)
  45. 100% Inspiration: Get inspired. Visit somewhere amazing like Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Or visit someone amazing. Don’t forget to tell them that they’re amazing.
  46. Sleeping Beauty: Your mind is probably tired. Get some shut-eye. Some days are only good for sleeping through, anyway.
  47. Press refresh: Get some air circulating your space, burn some candles or incense, spray some perfume.
  48. Brownie points: Make these brownies. Thank me later.
  49. Blog Revisited: Go back to a blog post that always gives you ideas. My two current favourites are Gala Darling’s Sad Trombone List and this list of 25 Productive Things To Do on a Rainy Day by Meg Favreau on WiseBread.com.
  50. Hope: Remember that you will not always feel like this. Accept how you feel, but take comfort in the fact that it doesn’t rain forever.
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