Everyday wins during your normal working day

It is often the small victories that make all the difference

We all know what it feels like to have one of those days. You miss the train by seconds, that uneven paving stone singles out your toe for a stubbing, the tomato sauce in your meatball sub is curiously attracted to your crisp white shirt, you accidentally email a sarcastic comment about Johnson in HR to Johnson in HR. Somehow it seems you're either out of sync with the rest of the world or the rest of the world is out of sync with you.

But what about those days when, according to the same mysterious laws of karma, the Gods seem to be smiling down on you? We're not talking lottery wins or being mistaken for George Clooney or discovering a beer that helps you lose weight, but those little everyday wins that brighten the otherwise mundane working week.

Watlington, Oxfordshire, UK

Everyday wins with money

You don't need us to tell you that when it comes to huge, life-changing national lottery wins, 'it could be you' is never realistically going to materialise into 'it is you'. But there are ways in which a bit of extra cash might fall into your lap. For example, we've all had that moment when we put on a jacket or pair of jeans we've not worn for months, only to discover a ten or twenty pound note in the pocket. Certainly enough to get in a round or two.

Perhaps you've looked at your wage slip to discover you have been given an unexpected bonus. Then there's the classic monopoly-style 'bank error in your favour', like a PPI compensation, or else opening that brown envelope from HMRC with understandable trepidation only to discover you've been given a tax rebate.

Or maybe you like the occasional flutter, and you'd completely forgot about the £1 bet you put on Leicester at the start of the season, just for a laugh... Nah, that would never happen.

A train stopped in one of the stations of London's tube.

Everyday wins on your commute

The traditional commute is a Sisyphean slog designed to test the self-control of a Zen master, but just occasionally the planets come into alignment and the whole experience is, dare we say it, almost pleasurable. So you not only arrive on the train platform just as your usually delayed train is pulling in, but when it stops the doors open right in front of you and – wouldn't you know it – there's a double seat there with your name on it. Or else, you're in your car and for unfathomable reasons the usually seething traffic is on this particular morning is flowing as smooth as silk, while the sun bleaches in through the windscreen and the DJ on the radio seems to be playing your own personal playlist. Just for once, you arrive at the office having experienced a journey that's had a genuinely positive effect on your state of mind, putting you in the mood to make the rest of the day just as perfect.

Young woman in the office drinking tea

Everyday wins in the office

Office life has its ups and downs, but for the most part it's a fairly innocuous and banal experience, a process of taking stuff from your inbox and endeavouring to get it into your outbox. But there are everyday wins to savour here. Take, for instance, that hot summer afternoon when the boss is in an unexpectedly good mood and insists you all clock off early to enjoy the weather, or even better, offers to take you all to the pub on company expenses.

Perchance you arrive half-asleep for an early morning meeting to discover some generous soul has kindly laid out coffee and pastries. Then there are those rare days when you switch on your computer and, rather than swathes of mostly pointless emails to sift through, you have none at all other than one from the boss congratulating you on your professionalism and hinting at a promotion. Or what about a water-cooler moment when a colleague tells you they overheard the attractive Jane/John in accounts talking about how attractive they thought you were.

So remember, when it feels like you're having one of those days, an everyday win might be just around the corner, here to offer a metaphorical slap on the back and say, 'Hey, everything's gonna be just fine. Look, here in your back pocket is a tenner you forgot you had.'