Everyone had bad days -- but when it's your girlfriend's whose not having the best day, you want to do all you can to help her feel better. Both you and your girlfriend will benefit from your efforts to cheer her up: according to Harry Mills, Ph.D. and Mark Dombeck, Ph.D., both with Mental Help Net, the "sharing of positive emotions with others helps to bond people together, creating and maintaining strong, healthy and caring relationships."
Give emotional support. When you first learn that your girlfriend is having a bad day, provide a listening, attentive ear to find out what she's going through. Listen to your girlfriend's concerns, show empathy with comments, such as "I'm sorry that you're having that experience," and refrain from offering any advice or suggestions. Clinical and forensic psychologist, licensed private investigator and author Joni E. Johnston, Psy.D., says that partners often give their significant others the wrong type of support during challenging times -- such as insisting that a significant other immediately find solutions to a problem when the partner really just needs someone to listen objectively -- which could make matters worse.
Give words of encouragement. Once your girlfriend has told you about what's bothering her and you've shown her empathy, offer some encouraging words, such as "You'll have a better day tomorrow," or "So what if you made a mistake? Everyone makes mistakes, and you're still brilliant!" Encouragement will lift your girlfriend's spirits, boost her self-esteem and help her feel better about her bad day.
Ask what you can do to help your girlfriend. Psychologist, journalist and author Irene S. Levine, Ph.D., suggests in Psychology Today that you offer to relieve your girlfriend of a burden, if she's feeling overwhelmed, which might be contributing to her bad-day experience. Offer to bring lunch to her job so that she can have a working lunch, if she's worried about missing a deadline. Arrange to run errands for her after work so that she can head straight home and relax.
Send a heartfelt text or email after you've spoken to your girlfriend. Once you've offered to help your girlfriend and she returns to work, follow up your conversation with a text or email that includes a complimentary message. Write a comment such as "Hey, Beautiful! Remember, everything will be all right!" to put a smile on her face. Your girlfriend will feel happier and feel like she's special to you, when she sees that you've gone above and beyond to show support during her trying day.
- Bring your girlfriend flowers or her favorite edible treat to help her feel better, and for added effect. Take this extra step after she's shared her day's experience with you and you've offered words of encouragement.
K. Nola Mokeyane has written professionally since 2006, and has contributed to various online publications, including "Global Post" and Modern Mom. Nola enjoys writing about health, wellness and spirituality. She is a member of the Atlanta Writer's Club.