How to Feel Better When You’re Not Really Sick.

Sick in bed = Trip


I’m not sick this week… but I’m not well either. I feel tired, weak and a little shaky. I’m not sick enough to drown myself in Sudafed and cuddle under a blanket but it’s all I can do to drag myself out of bed and tap out a few half-hearted articles, unpack the dishwasher and sigh a lot. I’m just not well. It seems that plenty of people are feeling this way (I blame it on the first week of winter) so I’ve written a short guide to help us get back on our feet.


Whenever you need to. After work, after dinner, at lunch time. I went to bed at 9pm last night and I’m normally climbing the walls at midnight. The only time your body can recover from illness is during rest. If you don’t stop moving you will drastically increase the time that you feel unwell.


I’m what you would loosely call a health nut. Not a fifth strain vegetarian who eats nothing that casts a shadow but a dairy/gluten/sugar/carb/salt avoider. When I’m not feeling well, I eat anything that will make me feel better. Which often means salty crackers, miso soup, lemon gelato, bowls of rice or oven fries with tomato sauce. Ignore the fact that you usually don’t eat starches after 5pm and down that bowl of creamy pumpkin soup. Fruit juice is also amazing when you’re unwell so get over the calories and start drinkin’!


The world will not implode if you don’t pay your phone bill on the day it arrives or if you start your assignment a little later than you planned. If you have a willing mother/father/boyfriend/girlfriend/housemate then let them take care of you. Be a little sooky. If you live alone, tuck yourself up on the couch with snacks, drinks and the remote. Stay there. For a really long time. Then go straight to bed.


As many vitamins as you can. Eat a spinach omelette, make beetroot and carrot juice, have some steamed broccoli and eat a fruit salad.

Take a day off

You don’t have to be on your death-bed to use your sick leave, just don’t make a habit of it. When I was in high school my mother would let me take the occasional ‘mental health day’ where I wasn’t actually sick, I just needed some time off. These days are important, so take the occasional not-entirely-sick sick day.

Skip the gym

Body Combat and Spin will be your worst enemies if you’re low on energy and feeling flat. Try yoga, walking or a gentle bike ride. Intense physical exertion will only make you feel worse. You’ll be back at the punching bag in no time if you rest properly.


It’s easy to get into permanent state of blah when you’re feeling ordinary. Hang out with a fun friend, watch a movie that guarantees giggles or call someone who always makes you feel good. If your brain is feeling fab, your body will soon follow.

What are your favourite feel good tips? Share in the comments or on twitter or facebook!

Carly is the founding editor of Smaggle which launched in 2007 back when blogging was weird. She has appeared in The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, Cosmopolitan and Cleo magazines. Hoop earrings are totally her thing and she almost got run over by Myf Warhurst while out jogging one day.


  1. Kristie 5 years ago

    Hmmm. Sometimes you just need a facial. They can be pricey, but they are oh so worth it. When I lived with my parents my aesthetician mom would always give me facials when I was feeling stressed. To this day, almost nothing feels better than clear, blackhead free skin and a steam cleaned face. Trust me, it works. If I don’t have enough money to go get one, I try steaming my face over hot water for 10 minutes, then putting on my own store bought mask. A little pampering goes a long way. Add painting your nails for the whole shebang. 

    • Author
      Smaggle 5 years ago

      Just did an at home facial and my skin is feeling fine! Thanks for the tip!

  2. tamera ferro 5 years ago

    Yessss. This has been the last few days of my life, though I was HORRIBLY sick and now it’s just a dragging cough and the inability to sleep. Can’t wait to get home, have a hot bath & a little nap! 

    Hope you feel better soon!

    • Author
      Smaggle 5 years ago

      Thanks love, I’d KILL for a bath but I have to save that up for when I visit my parents. 

  3. Megan 5 years ago

    I needed this article today. I am on my second day off work due to the flu and feel so guiltily despite the only movement I am capable of is moving from lounge to bed and back again.

    • Author
      Smaggle 5 years ago

      Suck it up woman! You have a day off, enjoy and don’t you dare feel guilty. 

  4. ScribblesNZ 5 years ago

    You have totally just described the way I have felt for about the last week and a half – not sick but not well either. I’ve been letting myself off a little bit with regards to exercise and diet but it’s hard. The rest part is the hardest – always so much to do!

    • Author
      Smaggle 5 years ago

      I know! I SUCK at resting. When I really, really need to my body makes me. 

  5. Nessbow 5 years ago

    I love to make myself a massive batch of vegetable soup.  It instantly makes you feel better, and is packed with vitamins to support your immune system.  Plenty of sleep is also a good cure when you’re feeling run-down.

    If I’m having a ‘blah’ day, I tuck myself on the couch with a stack of my favorite movies.  I like feel-good flicks with very little plot, so if you doze off, you haven’t missed too much.  The Court Jester, Legally Blonde and Mallrats are my favorite sick-day movies.

    • Author
      Smaggle 5 years ago

      I’ve been meaning to do that for ages! Next on the list! 

  6. Amy 5 years ago

    I know our seasons are reversed, but I totally felt this way for all of January and part of February this year.  We had a most terrible winter in the chilly Northeast US.  It was vile.  I have one of those awful bosses that yell at you for sick time, death bed or no, so taking time off actually stressed me out (boo) – so I hear ya, Megan.  

    I agree with all your points times ten!  Feel better soon, Miss Smaggle! 

  7. Bambamcomet 5 years ago

    thats good advice… feel better

  8. Anne T 3 years ago

    I should have taken this advice last week but instead pushed myself to keep going and now have a full blown cold with cough and all sorts of yucky sinus stuff happening! I’ve had one day off and am currently in bed contemplating whether to get up to do some work because I feel bad about another day off…..

  9. Hope Franks 3 years ago

    I feel this way now. I just woke up feeling like this. Thanks for the advice

  10. Michele 11 months ago

    I can’t stop sleeping and I’m 100.7 LBs. I just can’t gsin weight! Plus I feel weak, shakey and just down right gross. Can anyone give me advise? I beg you all.

    • Berta 2 months ago

      Did you ever go to the doctor? I would be concerned about being anemic, and if what could be causing that….

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