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Having a sucky day? Then it might help to CLING on...

Posted in 1. Mental health resources @ Aug 10th 2016 - By Dr Cathy Warburton, Make Headway
Having A Sucky Day It Might Help To Cling On

Working in veterinary practice is difficult enough but if you have a day where everything goes wrong what can you do?

You know those days where everything you touch turns to stinky diarrhoea……?  What do you do to get yourself back on track?

We all have those days that start badly and just seem to continue on in the same vein. It really is as if we got out of bed on the wrong side – the dog vomits and you have to clean it up, then you find that you have run out of milk and you have a fight with your partner over who should have got it. By the time you get to work, minus your usual caffeine fix, you are already feeling that you are in for a bad day. A small extra setback - somebody calls in sick or a client questions a bill or one of your cases is not going as well as you would like - may be the literal straw that breaks the camels’ back and sets you off. You may be the type that does silence – you go quiet and look grumpy, but if anybody dares asks you if everything is OK, you say “I’m FINE” in such as way that everybody knows you are anything but fine. Or your style may be more in the violence category – where you snap at people and create distance with your words.

What can you do about it?

Does your day have to continue on like this? Are you able to get a handle on yourself and stop your mood infecting the whole workplace? It may help to consider your emotions as being like the Melbourne weather – constantly changing.  You may have started off with a shower or storm, but the sun is there, waiting to break through. Why don’t you take a few minutes to do something that makes you feel happy and allows the sun to come out?

Research has some answers...

Researchers in the field of positive psychology (the science of leading a flourishing life) have highlighted that there are many, small things that you can do to lift your mood. For example, you could take 5 minutes to go outside and watch a bird or an insect about its work OR put on your favourite piece of music through headphones OR watch a funny video on YouTube OR pat a non-judgmental furry friend.

It's time to CLING!

Give it a go and see what a difference it can make to your day – CLING right on to your happiness or well-being and see the differences in productivity – both to you and your workplace. CLING is a neat acronym which summarises many of the evidence-based happiness interventions.

Connect – with family, friends or pets

Learn – new things

Into Action – get the benefits of exercise

Notice – be mindful and curious of the world around you

Give – take the focus off yourself and give to others

Go to my web-site at and you can download an A4 CLING poster.

Print it out, laminate it and put it up as a visual prompt to remind you that it truly is the little things in life that make us happy. Which one(s) are you going to do today?

What do you do to improve your mood and turn your day around? We'd love you to share your tips in the Comments section below.

About Cathy

After graduating from Murdoch in 1989, Cathy worked as a clinician, trainer and manager in private, university and corporate practices for 25 years – mostly in the field of Emergency and Critical Care. Cathy left practice in 2014. After studying positive psychology and well-being, and coaching, she started her own business in veterinary wellness – Make Headway. She has a beautiful husband, three teen-aged boys, a loopy GSHP (Jelly) and 4 chickens. Cathy is committed to increasing well-being in the veterinary industry.

You can visit the Make Headway website here...


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