Wondering You Had a Good Day. How Do You Know?
Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

It’s that time of the night we so dearly love. The bedtime is here to embrace you. The chaos of the day is left behind, only to drown you in the dreams of a better tomorrow. It was a good day, or was it?

Once in bed, the mind switches to various things that went right or wrong. Perhaps, you slogged for the day, achieved something, or worked as usual.

The day is gone, but not the thoughts in your head. The mind evaluates, analyzes, and refuses to pause. Our inherent nature to assess takes over and compels us to think hard. 

So, the day has gone, but how was it? 

Did you make it count?

Has the day brought you the desired joy you wanted?

The entropy is glaring while you try to make sense of it all. Was it all worth it? 

Frankly, there is no correct way to estimate your day and the success you had. While the concept or the idea of a good day may vary for everybody, there are a few parameters that can provide you an insight into it.

Wondering you had a good day. How do you know?

Let’s dive into a few daily happenings that can help you assess your day and how well it went.

The compilation is basis first-hand responses from friends, colleagues, family members, and random people.

You gave your all

People often judge their day by the output and results. While you may be bereft of a positive outcome or ended with an unfinished task, honest effort into your day brings satisfaction to many. 

I remember sending around a hundred emails for some freelance work to write on the weekend. Sending emails is not huge but finding jobs is. It took six hours on my regular working day to contact employers. 

The result.

No revert. Zilch. Something inside me pushed me to send a few more, and I did. 

While I was off to sleep, the satisfaction of doing everything in my purview or power made me at peace. Yes, a lot could have materialized, making it a productive day but putting everything into the day was inspiring enough to sleep peacefully.

The verse from the bible:

2Timothy4:7 – I fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

While St. Paul in the bible had a different context, the lines hold for us. It’s a practical way to understand the day gone. If you gave it your all, that’s it.

You finished what you slept thinking the last night

Our nighttime is usually the introspection period. All that went wrong, right, or the unfinished task weighs on our minds. Pretty sure you ever found yourself interrupted by impertinent thoughts about unfinished work? 

Perhaps they were about a partially finished task, email reply, or a work project keeping you up and eating your nights. 

We often sleep thinking of unfinished business to be handled the next day. Simple things like washing your car, going to the vet, or critical tasks take our mindshare. While trivial or essential tasks are part of the day, non-completion disturbs us. Any task left unattended hampers our day’s progress, making us anxious.

This anxiousness is the Zeigarnik effect, where we remember more of the unfinished tasks than the completed ones. 

When we start something (even in our heads) but do not finish it, it hovers in our heads, messing up with our thoughts. We love completing things we started as it gives us a high of accomplishment. It is like finishing your favorite OTT series episode after episode till you know what happened. 

Since the influence is immense, completing things that we thought the other night while sleeping signals a good day for you.

You took on the challenge and said ‘yes’

The only difference when it comes to immense success or extreme misery is our acceptance of challenges. The more inviting we become and take life head-on, the better chance we create for ourselves. Life always presents with daily challenges, and the onus lies on us whether we said yes to them or avoided them for the sake of comfort.

Anything out of the conventional day embraced by us is a part of doing something new. It brings us out of our complacency, preparing us for any eventualities.

When you mentally prepare yourself to take on daily hurdles rather than chicken out over the possibility of an uncomfortable situation, growth begins.

So when Katherine Switzer, the American marathon runner, author, and TV commentator says; your life is for participating and not spectating, she has a point.

When you move ahead and take a shot at the unknown, life starts. You did something you’ve never done without fear is the ultimate satisfaction. It needn’t be radical ut simple regular stuff. It can be taking a new route, called an old pal, ate something different, and taking a new job responsibility. It all adds up because you weren’t sure, but you did it anyway.

When you look back and witness your fearless self, it makes for a good day.

You put your body to work

Maybe you walked a few miles or better, run. You moved that butt of yours and found time for yourself. You didn’t make an excuse of being too stuck with the daily shit you had. Your foot is paining, and there is soreness in your body. That stretch got you all shaken, and there might be a case of some pain in the back. 

It is all worth though. 

Some take a little walk while others go for a run. Some go for a few stretches here and there for the functioning part. I am a sucker for cycling and go 10-15 miles, all drenched in sweat and sometimes pain when the body wants to pause, but the miles don’t end. 

Socrates, noticing his disciple Epigenes in poor condition, advised him to start exercising. 

Epigenes replied, “Well, I am no athlete, Socrates.”

Socrates replied, “It is shameful to grow old through your sheer indifference before seeing what manner of man you may become by developing your physical strength and beauty to their highest limit. But you won’t see that if you are negligent, for it does not come of its own accord.”

The body craves movement and agility. Often people find excuses to skip the gym or home exercises. I say walk. Just walk a few miles. 

Don’t exercise, move. Stairs, park, or your terrace. Simple enough. 

Who’s stopping a few stretches or a little walk. If nothing, you’ll connect with yourself.  

It looks an absolute impossibility on the face of it for many. Hard to fathom that squeezing three sessions of 15 minutes is a luxury for many now. With all your devotion towards work and everything else, what if your body breaks down.

You reached out and lent a hand

It always feels good when you make someone feel good. Not because someone asked for it, but because you wanted to help out and make a difference.

Fathom this, vampire bats regularly regurgitate blood and donate it to fellow members of their group who have failed to feed that night, ensuring they do not starve and perish.

That’s helping. While you are not supposed to go the length as vampire bats do, there is a lot you can.

Consider the beautiful feelings experienced when you lent your helping hand to someone who was struggling. Imagine the sigh of relief someone has when helped out of the blue. It’s good to be good, and it creates a positive cyclic pattern. 

It could be a stranger, friend, family, or anybody. The feeling associated with helping others reinforces our interconnectedness.

It brings a smile to your face knowing you did something worthy. From all the daily grind, you could do something that wasn’t for you, and it made a difference in someone’s life.

Research also validates how doing good not only feels good but also does good to us. Deep down, we all know that bringing joy to someone is a feeling above all. 

The sense of satisfaction attained is irreplaceable, and you know you had a good day because you made someone smile with your little help.

In conclusion

While there is no guarantee how our day turns out but ensuring some standard practices makes it better. The day is ours to make and bring the best out of us and the people around us. We can crib and cry over the lack of whatever we feel, but the world doesn’t care. 

If you have a roof over your head, had a meal, and clothes to cover, I’d say be grateful for the day and march ahead. 

You know you did well and had a good day if you embraced the chaos and did the essential things.

I fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.