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Getting through sad days

Now and then, we might experience sad days (or even consecutive sad days). This might be because of depression or just because life is hard.

Even when we progress towards self-care and healing, we experience sad days. Sad days are a part of life and being human. The key to navigating sad days is compassion.

What sad days are:

Sad days are part of the human experience. Sadness is a normal human emotion that occurs when bad things happen, when we are stressed, when we are exhausted, and sometimes because of unspecific causes.

Sad days are NOT failures or a reflection of your progress.

Sadness and sad days are painful, and pain is inevitable. Suffering, on the other hand, is avoidable. Suffering occurs when we allow ourselves to be consumed by our sadness and grief.

Understanding our Sadness

It can be hard to recognize and acknowledge our sadness for many reasons:

  • We are used to feeling sad
  • We find comfort in feeling sad
  • We feel guilty for feeling sad
  • Example: Others have it worse.
  • We feel weak for feeling sad
  • We experience productivity guilt for feeling sad
  • We believe we deserve to feel sad
  • Sitting with sadness feels easier than managing sadness

Practicing Self-Compassion

Self-compassion refers to the kindness we show ourselves despite how we are feeling.

Self-compassion is not something we earn. Self-compassion is something we deserve for being human. Life can be hard, so we owe it to ourselves to show ourselves kindness.

Self-compassion starts with acknowledging our feelings and allowing ourselvesto feel those emotions – even the painful ones!

Mindfulness & Introspection

Mindfulness is a great way to get in touch with how you are feeling. Try the body scan – what is your body telling you?

  • Are you sleepy?
  • Are you hungry?
  • Are you tense?

Another great way to get in touch with your emotions is through introspection. Introspection is the act of looking inwards and reflecting on what you are going through. Journalling, reflecting, listening to music, and making art are all great ways to reflect.

Tips for Managing Sad Days

In addition to mindfulness and introspection, tips for getting through and managing sad days include:

  • Attending therapy
  • Reaching out to loved ones for support
  • Doing something fun, like a hobby
  • Reading
  • Exercising
  • Playing a game
  • Eating comforting food
  • Watching a favorite movie or tv show

The goal is to do something that makes you happy.

This page is also part of the Roamers Therapy Glossary; a collection of mental-health related definitions that are written by our therapists.

While our offices are currently located at the South Loop neighborhood of Downtown Chicago, Illinois, we also welcome and serve clients for online therapy from anywhere in Illinois and Washington, D.C. Clients from the Chicagoland area may choose in-office or online therapy and usually commute from surrounding areas such as River North, West Loop, Gold Coast, Old Town, Lincoln Park, Lake View, Rogers Park, Logan Square, Pilsen, Bridgeport, Little Village, Bronzeville, South Shore, Hyde Park, Back of the Yards, Wicker Park, Bucktown and many more. You can visit our contact page to access detailed information on our office location.