Posted in after the diagnosis, coping with chronic illness, coping with life threatening illness, living with chronic illness, Living with Illness

Is “Have a Good Day” too Stressful?

How many times during the day are you asked, “are you having a good day?” or upon parting from someone are told, “Have a nice day”?  It’s common and cordial to begin conversations or at the end of a meeting to say these phrases, but is it putting too much pressure on us to fulfill this intention?  Obviously the goal is always to have a good day, but let’s face it; it’s not always an easy thing to do…why is that?  Because life gets in the way!

I really hadn’t given it too much thought until I was watching the trailer for the movie, “The Odd Life of Timothy Green”.  In the movie, the father says to the kid, “Have a good day”, the mother says, “That’s a lot of pressure”, and the father’s reply is, “Have the day you have”!

When I heard the last line I thought how incredibly insightful and responsive this man was to both his son and his wife.  Even more incredible was the consciousness that we’ll all have the day we’re going to have because we only have so much control over the Universe.  I did like that it brought to my consciousness that it’s okay to have the day your having because it represents truth.  It states loud and clear that it’s not the type of day I’m having that makes a difference, but how I’m going to respond/react to the day I’m having.

Following the diagnosis of a chronic or life-threatening illness, every day won’t be ribbons and bows.  What does it mean to you to “have the day your having”?  Are you accepting of whatever the day brings?  For many with a health challenge, “having the day your having” is filled with challenges that those who are healthy couldn’t imagine and yet we still have to keep on keepin’ on!

It’s nice that people want us to “have a good day”, and believe me I want the same, however, the reality is that the day isn’t programmable.  I can take what the Universe offers and configure it to guide me in my thoughts, actions, and beliefs about my journey to wellness.  I can use “having a good day” as a goal, but my success doesn’t depend on whether or not I achieve “a good day”.  There are some who believe that simply waking up for another day makes “a good day”.

What does this tell us about “having a good day”?  Bottom line, it’s subjective.  The day you’re having is personal.  The day you’re having can be framed the way you want it to serve you as you move toward getting better or getting well.  Every day that you awake you get to work with a blank canvas.  Your day can project the truth about your day and that’s what matters most, living the day you have!




I've lived my life in service to others. I'm focused on mental health and how it impacts our relationships, culture, and society. Through creative expression and narrative I believe we can impact change.

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