Loosen up that clenched jaw and stop rolling your eyes because we are coming in hot with tricks to combat even the worst mood. We’ve all woken up on the wrong side of the bed, slouched through an irritating morning, and given ourselves an anger headache by noon. Pump the brakes and turn that frown upside down with our bad mood hacks below.
- Shut down social media and get social IRL with a friend.
A University of Michigan study found the more time you spend scrolling Facebook, the more unhappy you feel. Conversely, the researchers determined personal interactions, either over the phone or face-to-face, improve your mood over time. Close down those apps and get to dialing your happiest pal for an instant pick-me-up!
- Get outside to see the bright side.
Exposure to sunlight stimulates the production of vitamin D, a natural mood enhancer, within your body. Soak up some rays by spending 15 minutes outside. Connecting to nature with an outdoor walk, lawn yoga, or simply sitting in the sun will relax your body by reducing cortisol levels, improve your mood with vitamin D, and lower blood pressure to boost your immune system.
- Fake it ‘til you make it.
Put a smile on and force yourself to think happy thoughts. Listen to your favorite upbeat song, watch a funny YouTube video (we suggest this oldie but goodie), or put on a hilarious podcast. Intentionally focusing on joyful subjects will eventually make you feel genuinely more happy!
- Nap it out.
Take a 60-90 minute rest, if you can squeeze it in, and prepare to wake up on the right side of the bed (or sofa). Sleep allows your body and mind to reset, preparing you for an improved mood following your nap! Be sure to stay off social media and think happy thoughts while resting.
- Take a bite (and a drink) out of the hangries.
Snack on some raw veggies and hummus or fresh berries and nuts for an immediate energy boost. Follow up with a big glass of water and you are well on your way to a better day! Often, we don’t realize we are hungry and dehydrated but both of these impact our mood exponentially. A healthy dose of powerful antioxidants, good fats, and refreshing water will satiate you while instantly battling the grumpies.
- Send a sweet message to brighten someone else’s day.
Making other people happy also makes you happy! A quick text letting your loved one know how much you appreciate them will bring you joy, as well. Knowing you’ve done something nice is immediately gratifying and reminds you to be thankful for all the love in your life!
- Get moving.
A brisk walk or quick dance session will instantly lift your spirits. Exercise promotes the generation of endorphins, mood-boosting chemicals that enhance optimistic feelings. Adrenalin and cortisol, hormones linked to anxiety, are also reduced with a workout. Just 20 minutes of fitness will improve your mood for the rest of the day! Regular exercise prevents a myriad of diseases while training your brain and body to be happier, healthier, and better connected.
- Sit up straight.
Your posture has major impact on your mood and confidence, according to a study through San Francisco State University. Convince your body to feel more energetic by perfecting your posture immediately! Lift your chin and pull your neck back to be aligned with your spine, tighten your tummy a bit as you roll your shoulders back. Tuck your hips forward, directly beneath your shoulders, to straighten out your spine. Maintaining this posture is a practice in mindfulness that makes you feel more energetic, boosts confidence, decreases pain, and lifts your mood!
- Literally count your blessings.
Grab a pen and paper and write down five things you are grateful for. This may be difficult at first if you’re in a really bad mood but start with the broad and obvious – the summer sun, the fresh air, the clean water in your glass. You can move into specifics like your loved ones, your favorite book, or your pets as you warm up! Focus on feeling the gratitude deeply and be excited at all the goodness surrounding you.
If you are consistently feeling irritable or upset, it’s best to connect with your healthcare provider. They can walk you through specific steps to help find a balance. Every individual is different, and finding your happy is a lifelong process. Don’t be afraid to ask for help!
Join our group and let us put a smile on that face of yours! Contact Janna at JSikma@ChildrensHealingCenter.org