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Ah, this crazy thing called LIFE! For some of us, our mental health has been a lifelong challenge. For others, recent events have taken their toll. No matter the root cause in your life, these 9 ways to boost your mood naturally may help us all get back on the right track. Sound good? C’mon, grab your favorite cuppa and let’s talk!

9+ ways to boost your mood naturally

Now and again, all of us need a pick-me-up. Whether you’re going through a tough time or are simply feeling the effects of your busy lifestyle, it’s quite common for your mood to fluctuate. 

Although occasional mood swings are normal for a lot of people, you shouldn’t ignore them. Mental health is extremely important, particularly in modern society. Failing to deal with a dip in your mental well-being can lead to depression, anxiety, and other debilitating conditions.

As the world emerges from a three-month quarantine, it may be difficult for some people to return to normality. In such uncertain and stressful times, it’s natural to feel anxious or low. Now, more than ever, we must look out, and pray for, those who need us the most. It’s crucial that people take the necessary actions to improve their mood and overall outlook. 

Luckily, there are plenty of things within your control that can affect your mood. The important thing to note is that these approaches should be taken gradually.

Although some can be effective immediately, others may take some time to make a positive difference. Trust the process and understand that your actions are doing long term good. 

nothing worth having comes easy

Ready to get started? Here are nine effective ways to boost your mood naturally.


# 1 – Eat Healthily

Many people understand that the food they eat has an impact on their physical health. However, a staggering number of people don’t realize the effect food has on their mental health. 

A recent study by the University of Gothenburg revealed that poor diets could contribute to intensifying mood disorders like depression and anxiety. A more nutritious diet helps to increase brain function and can improve symptoms of mood disorders. 

Many experts agree that cutting out processed foods and refined sugars can do wonders for your overall health, and in particular, your mood. 

An example of a clean eating guide includes the following food groups:

  • Omega 3 fatty acids
  • Probiotics
  • Whole grains
  • Leafy green vegetables
  • Vitamin D

Coffee and tea are known to be brain boosters too!

Health tip: Did you know your diet could be causing or worsening your depression and anxiety? #health #depression #anxiety #mentalhealth


# 2 – Exercise

There is a very strong link between exercise and improved mood. Even spending a short amount of time performing moderate exercise can be extremely beneficial to your mood. 

From a scientific perspective, trials have demonstrated that exercise is comparable to antidepressant drugs as a treatment for major depressive disorders. It is also deemed to be effective in preventing relapse or worsening of depression. 

As humans, we are programmed to respond to certain things with fight-or-flight, meaning we either spring into action or cower in fear.

Although we are no longer faced with regular life or death scenarios, our brains still often operate in this way, contributing to significant anxiety in people. Exercise can be seen as a way of combating this sensation of fight-or-flight.

Through exercise, the body creates similar physical sensations to a panicked state, creating a positive association rather than a negative.

Exercise naturally increases endorphin levels, enhancing your mood. It also contributes to a healthy sleeping pattern which has a significant impact on your mood. As a focused activity, exercise can free your mind of clutter and give you a sense of achievement when you are done.

As someone who suffers from anxiety and depression myself, I can say beyond a shadow of a doubt, exercise has been a huge help in my life. On days when my mind simply won’t stop ruminating on negative junk – getting my body moving helps stop the noise and calms my mind.


# 3 – Get Some Sunshine

Natural sunlight can have tremendous benefits on your mood. Like exercise, exposure to sunlight naturally increases serotonin levels in the brain. 

Many people suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SOA), which is commonly referred to as seasonal depression. Gloomy, overcast days with very little sunlight are often associated with this condition.

Exposure to sunlight has a direct impact on the amount of melatonin produced in the brain. This is the chemical that tells the brain when it’s time to sleep. This helps to program your body clock to a healthy routine naturally. Routine and sleep is a big factor in determining your mood. 

Spending too much time in the sun can be harmful, however. It’s important to avoid being sunburnt or damaging your eyes from light exposure. Ensure that you always wear enough sunscreen.

If you spend a lot of time outdoors or driving in the sunshine, you should make sure that you’re using protective lenses. Eyeglasses.com provide a range of such eyewear, from prescription lenses to sunglasses.

a flower cannot blossom without sunshine, and man cannot live without love.

# 4 – Get Enough Shut-Eye (Sleep)!

Sleep is essential to recover and maintain a healthy body and brain. A lack of sleep can result in a day or two of feeling tired, unenergetic, and grumpy. 😲 Oooh, y’all don’t want to meet me when I’m exhausted, yikes!

Even one hour’s worth of sleep deficit can impair judgement and make it difficult to concentrate or complete simple tasks. If you are missing out on sleep on a regular basis, you can imagine the impact it will have on how you feel, think, socialize, and work. 

Sleep deprivation drastically reduces the chances of positive moods. Depression, anxiety, and bad moods can also contribute to poor sleep, creating a vicious circle around sleeping patterns. 

Do what you can to get as much quality sleep as possible. This will help you to function and be productive, giving you a better chance of feeling good.


# 5 – Meditation Relaxation

Meditation is one of the best ways to naturally tackle stress. This topic can be a personal subject, as everyone has different beliefs and methods.

For me, it’s getting quiet in the presence of the Lord and simply being still. Letting my mind go blank while breathing deeply, slowly, and listening to soothing soaking music. Sometimes I prayerfully meditate, others not.

When our breathing becomes slower and deeper, our mind and our bodies naturally relax, melting away the effects of stress slowly but surely. It’s harder for some personalities than others to get into a peaceful state. Don’t give up – you can do it too!

Try not to over-think relaxation. Some of us try so hard to relax that we can’t stop thinking about trying to relax! Allow your thoughts to drift. Don’t force anything. Overthinking only creates more anxiety!

Being calm, relaxed, and stress-free will greatly improve your mood. There are different types of meditation that might be suited to different types of people and faith convictions.

You can easily access guided meditation sessions online or through a mobile app. Sites such as headspace.com have tips for beginners looking for traditional methods.


# 6 – You Best Express Yourself!

You can't use up creativity.  The more you use, the more you have.

An exceptional way of dealing with feeling low is to find a healthy outlet for self-expression. Talking might be difficult for some people, so alternative methods of releasing emotion and feelings can be more effective.

Having an outlet for self-expression can help you identify the cause of stress, anxiety, or bad moods. Once you identify certain causes, you will be quicker to find solutions to the issues.

Different approaches to self-expression are suited to different people. Here are a few ideas:

  • Journaling
  • Singing
  • Dancing
  • Drawing
  • Painting
  • Crafting
  • Gardening
  • Volunteering

# 7 – Talk To Your Pet

Humans and their pets share a special bond. Although it’s been known for centuries that people’s dogs, cats, rabbits, birds, guinea pigs and others, bring them great joy, only recently have we seen the scientific studies to back this up. 

Pets can give you a sense of purpose and responsibility, they are great companions, and they can reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. Dogs, in particular, are fine-tuned to human emotions. They can interpret words, tone of voice, and body language. They can sense your emotional state, and they generally act accordingly. 

Cats are remarkably good at understanding emotion too, even if they don’t show you in the same way dogs do. Understanding how cats think might give you a better bonding experience.

If you have a pet, make an effort to interact and spend time with them. Whether this involves playing in the yard, taking them for a walk, or cuddling up on the couch, it’s guaranteed to benefit your mood.


# 8 – Hug Family & Friends

The act of hugging provides substantial feelings of comfort and love. When you give or receive a hug, it’s a natural stress reliever and provides a sense of safety and comfort. 

Hugging also raises the level of oxytocin in the body. This chemical is associated with happiness and reduced stress. Reducing stress and anxiety while increasing your happiness naturally improves your mood. 

The next time you’re feeling down, reach out to a close friend, partner, or relative and squeeze them dearly. The mood enhancement will go both ways.

ann hood quotes

# 9 – Smile & Laugh

Laughter has a number of powerful health benefits. Nothing lifts your spirits quite like laughing with a friend. It helps lift any burdens as it focuses your mind on humor and positivity.

When you’re feeling low, it can be difficult to find humor in things, so it’s vital to reach out to others for some well-needed relief. 

Laughter releases endorphins and creates a positive mood. Positivity is contagious and can have knock-on effects. You should try to feed off this happy, healthy vibe and use it to maintain a happy mood.


What Is Your Favorite Way To Boost Your Mood?

Throughout the course of our lives and individual experiences, we have all learned what emotional triggers to avoid, or what makes us sad. Most of us know whether or not we handle stress well.

But are we as familiar with what makes us happy? Far too often, the answer is no. How about we change that and discover (or re-discover) our genuine sense of joy?

Tell me friends, have you found ways that boost your mood naturally? I’d really love to hear your thoughts and what has worked for you, in the comments below!

All My Best Heading Your Way,

wholeness haven

Feeling a bit blue these days? You’ve got to see these 9 simple ways to boost your mood, naturally! #mentalhealth #mood #wellness #blogger

If this has helped you, please share with your social media family. I genuinely appreciate you! Your support definitely boosts my mood! 😀


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35 Comments

  1. This music is heavenly. I am working on some social and marketing for a client and feel sooooo at peace right now. Thank you Holly! Beautiful tips overall!

    1. Isn’t that soaking music amazing?? God’s presence is all over it and the peace is tangible in every way. I have so many favorites that it was impossible to list them all here. I had never heard of ‘soaking’ in the presence of the Lord until I attended my last church. I’m forever grateful for them introducing me to such a precious gift. I think you’ll be amazed at the work Holy Spirit does through it. 🙂

      It makes my heart smile that you enjoyed, Shell. ♥ It really is wonderful to hear from you. I’m sending my very best love and prayers your way. I trust that your project will go smoothly and be some of your best creations yet!

      1. (I wrote the first comment from my computer, which is logged into my professional site. Commenting now from phone, which is the lifestyle blog.) We used to do “soaking sessions” at the church I was at for more than a decade. It was amazing and taught me how to just sit with God. I love Dappy T Keys and WorshipMob, Bethel, and others who have some truly beautiful soaking and worship music. I love to just lie on the floor and let God pour His love out as the music plays. Other times, He will have me write and just flow through the pen. It’s so beautiful truly knowing the Lord and having a relationship with Him, isn’t it?!

        Here’s an example of Dappy T Keys:
        https://youtu.be/K0fPdnAruF8

        The project went well. Lots of work to do but it’s one of my favorite clients so it’s always a beautiful time with the Lord as we create and plan for the month!

  2. When I’m feeling unmotivated and tired exercise always makes me feel better. It lifts my mood and gives me energy. And feeling the warm sunshine on my skin makes me feel good immediately!
    And you know I love to talk to my pets! 😁
    I love the thought of meditation. My mind is constantly wandering so that’s hard for me to do sometimes. I’ve found that listening to meditation on an app really helps me stay focused.
    Another great post full of wonderful information my friend! Sending hugs and love!! 🤗❤️

    1. Isn’t it amazing how exercise actually boosts energy? Do you notice that creative ideas tend to flow too either during or after you’ve exercised? It’s fun!

      Ha ha, I love that you talk to your pets. I can’t tell you how big of a smile that gives me. 🙂

      I agree with you — meditation in its varied forms really does help! The focus is incredible. Soothing, relaxing sounds just calm all the extra noise. The brain is fascinating isn’t it? If you get a chance, take a listen to the soaking music link too. You might really enjoy it.

      You are so incredibly kind, Michelle. Your support & encouragement has blessed my life more than you realize! Sending hugs and love endlessly right back to you! 🤗💛

  3. Another great blog post, Holly! Thank you for the tips and advice. To be honest, I HAVE been mindfully practising a few of these of late… but you’ve given me some extras to try too 😉
    Much love to you and yours xx

    1. You are such a blessing to me, thank you! ♥ Isn’t it amazing how even some small changes make a big difference? Sometimes all we need is a little motivation to keep moving in the right direction. 🙂 It’s getting started sometimes that can be so tough!

      Thank you for sharing this my friend. Much love to you & yours right back at ya!

  4. I definitely see a difference in blue sky days. Just the blue sky makes a difference….
    I started running for mental health benefits but may have to stop. I hope not but, I guess it’s not up to me.
    Thanks for sharing!
    Good to see you posting…
    Love, light and glitter

    1. Eliza, I love hearing your thoughts! ♥ I agree with you — blue skies can be very healing. Do you ever just sit back and watch the clouds float by?

      I understand exactly where you’re coming from about running for mental health benefits. A physical therapist not long ago told me to stop as it was tearing my joints up! Have you considered trying really brisk walks instead? Recent studies have revealed that the mental & physical health benefits actually increase with that method vs. running.

      With all sincerity, thank you for reading! It means more than you’ll know to have your support & encouragement. I value you! 🤗 Love, light and glitter right back at ya!

      1. Yeah. Or I just lie back and look at the trees and sky. Sitting by water is as awesome too. I really need to do it more. Hopefully I’ll go out today. I feel like it’s a nature fix….

        Brisk walks don’t do it for me, but nature as said does help. It’s in a different kinda way though. I ran yesterday and it just cemented for me that I really need to discuss the dizziness with a dr (whether it’s harming me or not. It just needs to be a dr who won’t just say stop running but someone who’ll know. Because my heart rate and pressure are anyways outa whack when I stand, it may/may not be an issue). I’ll try get walking more though and see. Maybe I’ll get hooked 🙂

        The thanks goes to you, for your blog. I love reading your blog, love your insights, understanding, thought and care.

        Happy weekend!

        Love, light and glitter

  5. These are some excellent tips Holly! I’ve used most of them at one time or another, and they’re all helpful. Right now I’m working on a continuing education course on how to use exercise to improve brain health, and the science is absolutely amazing. If I ever doubted that exercise is good for us, I never will again! I’ve scheduled this to share on all my social media. Thanks for the fantastic ideas!

    1. Dearest Terri, you always make my day with your thoughtful comments. Thank you!

      Your continuing education course sounds fascinating. I have no doubt that what you’re discovering is eye-opening. I’ve been personally amazed at how even the smallest amount of movement improves my thinking and reasoning. Have you noticed that too? Even with writing, if I feel stuck, sometimes getting up and moving around is all it takes!

      Thank you again for being you. Your blog is always overflowing with amazing tips and hard-earned wisdom. It is my pleasure to share it with others! And thank you for sharing mine. You are a blessing to me! ♥

  6. Such a thoughtful post ,especially needed in such times . Love all the points mentioned and so true everything resonates with me as well. I love the quote on the strong hug as well.

    1. Hi Nisha! I agree with you – now, more than ever, we need to keep our mental health in mind. Being patient with ourselves as we navigate all these changes is a must. I’m grateful the post resonated with you. 🤗 That Ann Wood “strong hug” quote is true, isn’t it? Sometimes that’s all we need to feel better! Sending my very best to you & yours. ♥

  7. Holly, you’re an absolute gem! This is such an informative and motivating share, and so needed, especially during this difficult time. I know the value of all and their necessity for mental and physical health. Hubby and I have enjoyed learning guitar together. The power of music is infinite. Thanks so much for sharing. Gratitude (((hugs))) across the miles.

    1. Aw, Natalie! Your comment has made me smile, thank you!! I’d say you’re a gem, yourself.

      You’re right, we do need all the inspiration and motivation we can get at the moment. Even when we are doing our best to avoid the overwhelming fear tactics going around – it still affects us more than we realize! Reminding ourselves of all that is still good, and what we CAN do, works wonders.

      I absolutely love that you & hubby are learning guitar together. What a brilliant idea! I can see all the future jam sessions between Mr. & Mrs. Ducey being tons of fun. 😀 You & I are in full agreement too – the healing power of music is absolutely infinite.

      Sending my gratitude and hugs across the miles right back to you! ♥

  8. Does my daily Haribo intake count towards a healthy diet if I eat in moderation? 😉

    It’s great exercise has been so beneficial for you, it really can work wonders for boosting mood and clearing your head. I miss being able to exercise or go for a run. I still try little walks and I’d like to get back into yoga. I bought a new mat ages ago but alas, it’s gathering dust and I need to do something about that… I also want to get back into some of that self-expression you’ve talked about, doing a little art perhaps and finally writing something. Part of what stops me is like a brick wall, where I just don’t want to do those things, if I even have the energy for them. I’ve lost the joy in most things and I know that comes with depression, but it’s important to keep in mind that a lot of the things that can do us so much good – like you’ve beautifully listed here – are sometimes the things we find hard to make ourselves do when we actually need them the most.

    Sunshine for me makes a huge difference. I feel I was born in the wrong country (for many reasons) but one is the weather. I’m no good with the constant cold for my health and pain, and I feel the cold a lot. Sunshine doesn’t just mean prettiness, it means I don’t have to wear 5 layers of jumpers and that makes for a very, very happy Caz!

    I’ve got a somewhat similar-ish post drafted, about ways to ease off the stress during times of overwhelm. Great minds think alike, Holly!

    You’ve made some brilliant suggestions. I hope you can re-read these when you need a little boost, too. Xxxxx

    1. 😂 Heck yeah, Haribo counts, ha ha! If it brings some joy into your day – I say enjoy! Love your sense of humor, my friend!

      I hear you when it comes to exercise. It is possible for exercise to become a source of stress when you simply can’t do it for physical (or emotional reasons). Those thoughts of, “If I could just ____,” can really be painful. They serve as an almost constant reminder of how illness changes a life.

      Your idea of taking small walks when you can is a great one. Recent science has proven that the health benefits of walking far outweigh those of running. Plus, it’s much healthier for our joints! Yoga has helped tons of people. Knowing how to calm the mind is a handy skill for all sorts of applications in life. I do hope this has inspired you to pull that ol’ dusty mat out and get yourself some ‘zen’ in! 🤗

      I’ll be honest, Caz – I adore your writing. I genuinely mean it when I say that you have a gift. I hope one day I see a book or other media with your name as the author. As a writer, you have a way of expressing yourself no one else could. I hope one day you will see that as you self-express, others find their voice through you. The inspiration you provide is contagious!

      It breaks my heart to read that depression has robbed so much from you. My friend, how I’d love to lift that heaviness off of your shoulders! My genuine prayers are with you. Depression and anxiety make us feel like an empty shell of an existence. As you said, the joy vanishes. Everything feels so hollow. I hope you will feel even the slightest of urges to go and create something you love – whatever that is! In the midst of it, I pray joy floods your soul and lifts your spirits.

      You’re right – cold (especially with dampness) does have an effect on the joints! I’m so sorry you experience such pain. That’s another aspect of your reality that I wish I could take away for you. Are you having much sunshine there these days? 😉

      I sincerely look forward to reading your article! We agree – great minds do think alike! One of the reasons I value you so much is your heart for hurting people. It’s one of my main purposes for writing too. Your words carry more hope and motivation than you realize. Many people have found comfort and understanding, because of you. God bless you for being you. Trust me, you are so very loved! ♥ Thank you for another incredible comment!

      1. Nawwww, Holly, your comment got me right in the feelies. It’s funny that you say such incredibly nice things about me, and I’m sitting here thinking ‘but that’s exactly what I’d say about you!’. Ditto your writing style and the content of your posts. I hope you realise that.  ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

    2. I’m with you on the importance of sunshine! I have been reading up a bunch on how important it is in so many ways. For me personally, I’ve found out how much it plays into my sleep rhythms. I pray that the Lord meets you where you are at and lifts you up in the tender way only He can.

      And Holly, I couldn’t find a place to add a general comment on here, but this is such a good post. Thank you for working so hard to be a blessing to so many people!

      1. Sweetest Jennifer, what a joy to hear from you!! I agree wholeheartedly with you about sunshine. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that the simplest of God’s creation can bring us the most benefit! Are you naturally more of a night owl or a morning type?

        You are an incredible blessing to me, sis. You really are! I am grateful for your words of encouragement and the heart you have. More times than you know, you’ve prophetically spoken into my life and I value you! You are so very very loved. 🤗

  9. These are great tips you’ve shared ma’am. I love the exercise – I do walks though not every day. And sunlight helps our mood. And our diet helps a lot.
    I totally agree with these. ❤

    1. My precious sister, thank you so much for another thoughtful comment. You are genuinely appreciated! ♥

      I am grateful you enjoyed this post and have found these ideas helpful in your own life! It’s amazing what even small changes can make, isn’t it? God knew exactly what He was doing when He created all of this natural beauty just for us!

      Sending all of my love your way with hopeful prayers you & yours are well?

    1. Hi Roni, thanks for stopping in with your comment! I agree with you – exercise is a powerful mood lifter. I also agree that the hardest part can be simply staying consistent with it. Why is it that we get such positive effects time & time again but still have to drag ourselves to it? 🤷🏽‍♀️ We humans are odd creatures! I’m grateful to hear you’ve found something that works for you. Blessings to you & yours!

    1. Amen, Mark! I find that a good workout helps like few things can too. (Even when it’s hard to get motivated some days!) Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me! Praying you and yours are well!

I Love Hearing From You!

Holly G.

Hi, I'm Holly! Lover of my husband, the Lord, nature and animals (especially cats!) I'm an INFJ (MBTI) which means I love deeply and care about the well-being of those around me and in this world.

I hope to hear from you at one of my sites. God bless! ♥

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