I think most of us have been there. It's the first thing in the morning—or maybe mid-afternoon—last night was rough, or today looks too daunting. For some people, this is a normal occurrence. The simple task of rolling over and putting your feet on the floor seems impossible. For the average person, it's just “wake up, get up”.
But for those of us who struggle, its:
Open your eyes.
Remove the blanket.
Swing your feet onto the floor.
Where most people see one simple step, some days, some people see dozens of small steps. It can make even the easiest tasks feel impossible, and staying in bed feels like the only thing you can do. I, unfortunately, am one of these people—and a mom of two. Staying in bed just isn’t an option, though I’ll admit there are days I lose the battle.
For anyone who might be struggling with what I call “bad-brain days”, here are a few ways I handle the days I just can’t get out of bed:
Keep a snack or sweet drink next to your bed.
This sounds silly, but I swear it helps. Similar to some people needing caffeine to start their day, a little jumpstart to your blood sugar can do wonders for a mood boost. Have you ever heard of being hangry? It’s being in a foul mood because you’re hungry—and there is truth to it.
No, this is likely not the reason you can’t get out of bed today, but something sweet might be just enough to give you the push you need to get your feet on the floor. This might not be a solution for the hardest days, but give it a shot. It works for me!
Do something small first.
When you open your eyes and dread the day ahead of you, do your best to focus on what is right in front of you instead. Don’t aim to get dressed and rush out the door right away, start small. I recommend trying to find a way to transition your way there.
For example, usually the first thing we all do is check our phones in the morning. While you are scrolling, try to focus on just sitting up in bed when you’re ready. Little steps like this can help make waking up and getting up a little easier. Making it a more attainable goal helps, and the little wins matter. We don’t have to be ready to take on the world. It's hard enough when you’re trying to take on your own brain every day.
Just do it.
I can feel the eyes rolling already. I know, this isn’t a step that works for everyone, or even for anyone all the time. But sometimes, bed isn’t an option. Many jobs still don’t take mental health days seriously. If you are a parent with kids, maybe you need to get them off to school. Sometimes we just don’t have a choice.
I liken it to a day at the gym. We all have days when exercise feels like an impossible task, but we kick our own a**, get up, get moving, and we are thankful when we do. You don’t have to go out there and take on the world today, but get up, put on something you feel good in, and just do the best you can that day. Even if it's only laying on the couch and giving the kids way too much screen time, you still did it.
Battling your own mind is one of the hardest things you can do. Some days you win, some days you lose. Finding solutions that work for you is the most important thing you can do for yourself. But please remember, even if you can’t make it to the couch today, that is okay too.
What are some things you do on those can’t-get-out-of-bed days?