Is today one of those days? Do you need to get things done but aren’t sure how to boost your mood?
You know what I mean, that kind of day when you aren’t feeling it, when you are overwhelmed or moody, or just feeling down! Sometimes you know why you feel that way, and sometimes it’s just a mystery.
Yet, with or without a reason, you just don’t want to feel that way! Who would? Instead, you want to be productive, to have a good day, and to smile your way through life.
I’m here to tell you: those things happen to everyone.
So, first things first, don’t be so hard on yourself. Everyone has a bad day, whether they admit it or not.
So, don’t beat yourself up. Instead, you should be focusing on how to feel better, because, who likes to feel bad, right?
If you are having a bad day, it doesn’t have to stay that way. There are a lot of things you can do to boost your mood.
Eager to know how? Here are 12 things you can do to boost your mood quickly and to get that day going.
12 Quick and Easy Ways to Boost Your Mood on a Bad Day
1. Get off the couch
I know a lot of people are afraid of the word exercise and honestly, I understand why. It involves getting out of your comfort zone.
However, you should look at exercising in a different way. Exercise is also a form of self-care and it can be fun if you find the one that’s right for you. It’s you a matter of trying different activities. Everything from dancing, walking, running, and hiking counts as exercise.
Multiple studies have shown that exercise can boost your mood and reduce the risk of depression. According to the Better Health Channel “exercise increases your level of endorphins, which are natural mood lifters”.
And if that isn’t enough of a reason, you´ll also feel more confident and sexier! Boom!
2. Dear diary…
Journaling has kept its popularity, even in the 21st century.
You can find tutorials on how to prepare, decorate, and organize your journal all around the internet. The reason why it has survived until nowadays is because it works. It doesn’t matter how silly it might seem to keep a diary, journaling is actually good for you!
Why? Because journaling allows you to see things in perspective. Also, you can analyze your feelings and vent them through the paper.
According to the University of Rochester, ¨journaling helps control your symptoms and improve your mood by:
-Helping you prioritize problems, fears, and concerns
-Tracking any symptoms day-to-day so that you can recognize triggers and learn ways to better control them
-Providing an opportunity for positive self-talk and identifying negative thoughts and behaviors¨.
So, whenever you are feeling off, open your journal and write down what you are feeling, since when you are feeling that way and what’s the cause behind your feelings.
Also, write how you would like to feel in that moment instead and what you can do about it.
You’ll find yourself feeling better pretty soon!
3. Reconnect with nature
Nothing boosts your mood like a stroll through the park or forest!
So, if you need a quick fix for your day, step out of your house. Visit the nearest park, beach or go somewhere where you can watch the sunset.
The important thing is to breathe fresh air and to move around nature!
An article published by the Harvard Medical School (2018) states: “research […] has shown a strong connection between time spent in nature and reduced stress, anxiety, and depression”.
Also, it says that just 20 or 30 minutes is enough to improve your mood. So? Get out there and connect with nature.
4. Play with your pet
Your pet can be your best friend for many reasons. One of them is it can help to improve your mental health.
Marwan Sabbagh wrote, “simply petting an animal can decrease the level of the stress hormone cortisol and boost the release of the neurotransmitter serotonin, resulting in lowered blood pressure and heart rate and, possibly, in elevated mood”. (2020)
So, on those gloomy days, take some time to play with your pet! For sure, you’ll be smiling after a few minutes.
5. Eat something yummy!
It is not a secret that there is a relationship between your emotions and what you eat!
Therefore, if you feel grumpy, prepare yourself a well-deserved meal.
If you want a snack instead, brew some coffee, or grab some dark chocolate. While you’re on it, take a break and disconnect yourself from everything and focus on savoring your snack or meal.
If you are not sure what to eat, it has been found that fish, dark chocolate, fermented foods, bananas, berries, and coffee are natural mood lifters.
Need a little tip? Eat something that reminds you of your happy childhood days. Not only will you be feeling full, but you’ll also feel happy in no time.
6. Learn or do something challenging
Either decluttering or taking the first lesson of a new language, starting a challenging activity not only can boost your mood but can contribute to your long term happiness.
The psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi wrote in his book that happiness is constructed when a person constantly takes challenges that aren’t too demanding or too simple.
He also says that “the best moments in our lives are not the passive, receptive, relaxing times… The best moments usually occur if a person’s body or mind is stretched to its limits in a voluntary effort to accomplish something difficult and worthwhile.” (1990, p. 3).
In other words, if you need to boost your mood, you can simply start a book or a language course! If those are too simple then start a bigger project.
7. Get rid of the clutter
If you are like me, everything you have is linked to a memory. Yet, sometimes, those memories can affect your mood in a negative way. They can remind you of a past relationship or an unfinished project.
So, maybe after looking at old photos or a special bracelet, your day might turn blurry.
On top of that, you can add that all that clutter will probably get you stressed and anxious too.
The solution? Decluttering. But what does cleaning has to do with your mood?
An article published by the BBC explains that: “tidying up, […] acts as a reward, which increases the release of the neurotransmitter dopamine, also known as the brain’s “pleasure chemical” in the brain.”.
Declutter your house and you’ll get two things done at once: you will boost your mood and you will have a clean home.
8. Sleep more (or take a nap)
Moodiness and tiredness often go hand in hand. For that reason, a quick energizing nap can improve your humor.
The Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School says that sleep deprivation can cause irritation and stress. In addition, it declares that adequate sleep will result in an improved mood and well-being.
Therefore, if you are grumpy because you didn’t sleep enough, take a nap and you’ll wake up happier than the sleeping beauty herself.
9. Listen to music
Music is a universal language because of the way it expresses emotions.
The same way a sad song can make you cry, a happy song can boost your mood. Put on some upbeat music! It could be instrumental or it could have some lyrics.
According to multiple studies, music puts us in a better mood.
So, turning on your radio, or playing your Spotify playlist might do the trick. Without noticing, you’ll be happily tapping your feet to the rhythm.
10. Smell something nice
Yes, aromatherapy is a thing. Don’t underestimate the power of your nose!
From lavender to freshly brewed coffee, every person enjoys different smells. Regardless, we all have in common one thing: our favorite smell puts us in a good mood.
Lisa Evans lists the following smells as mood-boosters: lemon, lavender, jasmine, rosemary, cinnamon, and peppermint.
Now you’ve got the perfect excuse to stop to smell the flowers while you are taking a stroll.
11. Laugh more
If you want to boost your mood, having that frown on your face won’t be of any help. Instead, try to laugh more.
Laughing has multiple health benefits. A few of them? Improving your mood, lessening depression and anxiety, soothing tension, and relieving stress.
If you need a little help, watch a comedy series on Netflix or look up funny videos on YouTube.
Life is too short to be frowning and to be stuck in your moodiness.
12. Bring in the backup
Ok, it is true: when you are in a bad mood, the least you want is to invite a friend over.
Yet, when it comes to boosting your mood and making you laugh, there is always that one friend that can make it happen!
If you are feeling grumpy, call that goofy friend or visit your hysterically funny grandmother. Not only will you be feeling better, but you’ll be in good company too.
How do you boost your mood?
These are just 12 quick and simple ways to boost your mood. Why? Because a bad day can happen to anyone, but you can always turn it around.
Now tell me, how do you boost your mood on the days that life sucks?