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!
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.
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
- 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 #mentalhealthTweet
# 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.
# 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!
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:
# 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.
# 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,
Feeling a bit blue these days? You’ve got to see these 9 simple ways to boost your mood, naturally! #mentalhealth #mood #wellness #bloggerTweet
If this has helped you, please share with your social media family. I genuinely appreciate you! Your support definitely boosts my mood! 😀