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3 Ways to End Each Day on a Positive Note

No matter what your day includes, try these routines to bid it farewell with peace and optimism.

Ending the day on a positive note
Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

“At the end of the day,” the actor Ben Vereen is quoted as saying, “give up your worries and give thanks for the journey.” I love the idea of regarding each and every day as a journey—small steps within the larger framework of your whole life, but also unique, finite moments in and of themselves. None of us can predict what each new day will bring. But we can choose to end it on a positive, peaceful note. 

1)  Lay Eyes on the Sunset

There’s only one today, and there’s no better way to embrace that truth than by finding a spot to behold the uniqueness of the sunset. Even if it’s cloudy, even if you can only glimpse a moment of the waning light, take the opportunity to watch the sky brighten, color and then fade into darkness. It’s an inspiring and very specific way to say to yourself, “day is done.” You might enjoy this feeling so much that you offer nature an applause!

2)  Make a Gratitude List

Look back over the day with self-compassionate, grateful eyes. Take a moment to list—aloud or in writing—a few things that you are thankful to have done, thought or felt. You can think very broadly (I’m grateful I felt well today) or at a micro level (I’m grateful I remembered to buy eggs last week so I could have them today). Or you can reflect on something in the middle, from conversations you’re glad to have had to the feel of a favorite t-shirt on your skin. Your list needn’t be long to urge your mind in a positive direction as the day draws to a close.

3)  Tidy Up (Just a Little)

As we continue to spend more time at home, small corners of clutter can feel like they’re taking up permanent residence in our space. At the end of each day, spending just a couple of minutes tidying up any area can keep your home feeling fresh. It can occupy your hands with an easy task and represent in a physical way how kitchen gadgets, opened mail, books and clothing served your day. It’s both important and satisfying to tuck them back into their places, just as you’ll do when you settle down to sleep.

How do you end your day on a positive note?

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