Leanne Nalani

{April 4, 2014}   Tough Thursday

You ever have those days? The kind where you want to:

a) Rip your hair out

b) Self-destruct Run home, get into a fetal position, and stay that way the rest of the day

c) Tell everyone off

d) Eat lots and lots of ice cream and chocolate

e) All of the above


Yesterday was one of those days for me at work. I just wasn’t having it. It’s not even like the day itself was a big deal. It was nothing life-changing or life scarring but it was mentally exhausting, stressful, and upsetting.

As a special education teacher I am certified to teach classes of up to 15 or 16 in the resource room setting and my classes are actually around 10 students, so when I am forced asked to substitute for a general education teacher’s wily 9th grade class for 105 minutes I get a little uppity. But I rolled with it. My own little class that day was having challenges and I wasn’t feeling very well physically. Subbing the next period was not my cup of tea. 105 minutes is a loooooong time for a 14-year-old, let alone 32 of them.

Anyway. Sorry for my negativity. I feel better today.

I knew this stress was the perfect trigger for emotional eating so I nipped it in the bud with my new problem solving strategy! I got this idea from that book I reviewed last week. I have a journal in OneNote to process my thoughts and specific questions to answer in order to problem-solve, so here’s how it went:


Date(s)/Topic: 4/3/14 Emotionally Upset, Bad Day

What is the problem or problems?

Angry, forced to sub for a tough class, unpredictable and stressful circumstances!

What are all the possible solutions?

  1. Zumba
  2. Go Home and not work out, have a Skinny Pirate, zone out to Netflix

What are the likely outcomes of each solution?

  1. Feel better, not want to eat ice cream all night
  2. Possibly want to eat more due to alcohol, feeling sleepy and like a failure because I didn’t exercise…

Which solution(s) is the best? Do it!

  1. Zumba for sure. Maybe a drink after if I still want it.

Reflect on how it went (next day).

I did Zumba! Ended up with 10,000+ steps for the day and didn’t want a Skinny Pirate after all. I feel really good about this! Plus my mom texted me and my sister called so having that time talking it out with loved ones was also very helpful. Oh, and the teacher gave gifts to all the teachers who subbed for him that day to thank us – Starbucks gift cards and triple chocolate covered almonds. That was pretty thoughtful. Did I mention that I am easily bribed? 🙂

photo (7)


Saturday and Monday are also potential days where I need to problem-solve to prevent overeating so I’m working on that. If it is successful, then I know I have a possible long-term solution to help me make progress with my relationship with food and finding a balance.

*Have any of those days lately?

*How do you problem-solve? Do you journal, answer questions on paper or in your head, talk it out, etc…?


Umm sounds like you are TOTALLY justified in being frustrated!

Oy, yeah I thought so. It’s the time of year for sure. Now that school is out for spring break I’m hoping the kids will get all that energy out before coming back to school!

I had one of those days today (see my blog). Luckily I have a husband who loves to cook so when I got home dinner was ready and after we went to a favourite shopping community not too far from where we live and walked up and down the street and stopped for coffee and gelato. Nice treat but it’s definitely not helping with my weight loss journey right now but it did lift my spirits and I didn’t binge later this evening.

I just read your post from Thursday. I can imagine no recess would cause problems. Does that mean recess was completely skipped or did they have some kind of indoor option? Younger kids with all that energy… That would be really challenging to manage. That must have been relaxing/refreshing to get out and do something that evening. Sometimes a little treat is just what is needed to hit the spot.

That’s hardcore. Recently I’d definitely pour a glass of wine and turn on the tv. But it’s so true that you feel way better when you take the active route. Yesterday I hiked a couple hours after work and took my average day to a great day! Hope your weekend is awesome!

Usually on a day like that I don’t take the active route because I’m too distressed. I’m really glad it worked out the way it did!
Hiking is a lot of fun. This summer I’m hoping to do a lot of that.

Michelle says:

That is really smart. I like the journaling idea and I think I’ll have to try it, even if I just sit and ask the questions to myself.

It’s definitely worth giving a try!

That is a sweet gift! I totally understand the disruption to the day when you have to cover a class. Good job not caving to stress!

Thank you! I’m kind of surprised and excited that I got past the emotional stress considering my track record for the last year. I also thought it was super sweet of my colleague. I’d like to show that kind of appreciation if others have to cover my class in the future, too.

peonut says:

Keep strong! Hope the weekend’s treating you better 🙂

Thank you! This weekend couldn’t have been better. 🙂

Haphazard Heather says:

I totally admire how you handled that day! 🙂 I’m still at the point where when I have days like that I just completely shut down and quit caring about my goals in life…until the guilt-filled next day of course. I think I’m going to give your problem solving method a try. I’m rarely without a pad of paper, so it sounds perfect for me.

I’m glad! So far I’ve done it about 3 times and it has worked. I’m going to keep doing it in hopes that it will prevent future binges.

I love that journaling approach! So concrete and actual problem solving – such a great way to deal with a rotten day. You rock!

I’ve always loved all kinds of journaling, so this is right up my alley. Since I am a concrete thinker and have a way of compartmentalizing things, this might be a long-term solution. We shall see! The real test will be right around when school gets out, when things are high stress (end of the year) rolling into low stress (summer break).

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