We’ve all had those days: we wake up, metaphorically, on the wrong side of the bed, and we just can’t seem to shake that mood for the rest of the day. Kicking a bad mood can seem next to impossible— especially with daily stress and a to-do list as long as the interstate— but with these tips to improve your mood, you’ll be on your way to a chipper mindset in no time at all!
Indulge in experiences:
Spoiling yourself once in awhile is a necessity— and it’s even more beneficial to your mood if you do it “right”. Instead of spending hefty sums on material things like clothing, treat yourself to a quality experience. Bring someone you want to spend time with who will enjoy the experience, too. That way, you can bond with them and entertain yourself with something that you don’t normally have a chance to do— like enjoy a luxury meal or a musical.
Doing things for other people makes us happier. Whether you’re holding the door open for someone, complimenting them on their smile, or volunteering your time at your local soup kitchen, knowing that someone has benefitted in a positive way from an action that you took will make you happier, as it gives you a sense of self-worth.
Look on the bright side:
Sunshine triggers the release of endorphins, which lighten your mood. This can be difficult in the winter, or if you work inside during the day. If you’re one of those people who has trouble chasing the sun when it’s up, try sticking close to a window. You won’t get as much sunlight as you would if you were directly outside, but it’ll help— and the natural light will make you feel more awake, which can also help your mood!
When things go wrong, it can be hard to keep the “wrong” from being the only thing on your mind. You can counter this by recording the things you’re grateful for that happened throughout the day. Try this: Just before bed each evening, write down three things that were positive that happened to you that day that you are grateful for. You can even turn it into a conversation with your child or significant other.
Work it out:
Among the many benefits of exercise is its’ inherent ability to help our moods take a turn for the better. Be it cardio or strength, or simply a stretching session, motion will get your blood flowing and release endorphins that will make you happy! Exercising is a great outlet for pent-up stress— it’s a heavily underrated stress management remedy. Give it a shot the next time you’re feeling a bit cranky!
Laugh it off:
The age-old saying, “laughter is the best medicine”, didn’t just appear one day— it’s true! A good laugh relaxes your muscles, which helps your stress and tension levels diminish. Laughing, like sunshine, also triggers the release of endorphins, those natural chemicals in your body that make you happy. Spoil yourself with a trip to the nearby comedy club, or spend some more time with your super-funny friends.
Decluttering your space of material things (be it on your desk, in your closet, or in your kitchen), will parallel with your mindset, helping you to gain clarity in stressful situations and to create space between stress and the things that really matter. On top of this, if you donate the “clutter”, you’re doing something good for someone else, and that will help you feel happier, too!
Allow yourself time to “unpack”:
A little stress is good stress, but sometimes, we get more than we bargained for. Throughout the day, we pack up all of this stress and tuck it away into the corner of our mind. If we aren’t taking the time to notice, handle, and let go of this stress, it compounds on itself and bogs us down— often spilling over into unrelated parts of our lives. Take the time to vent, whether it be to your significant other, a therapist, or through exercise. This will make it easier to let go of the stress and move on.