Sometimes it can feel like our moods are in the driver’s seat and we’re powerless to improve or change things. It’s easier to improve your mood than you might think. The next time you’re feeling less than stellar, try one of these 12 small actions that will put you in a better mood.
The next time you need a mood boost, just smile from ear to ear. Don’t worry if it’s a fake smile, either. Smiles, authentic or otherwise, are scientifically proven mood enhancers.
A quick walk around the block will, according to researcher Jeff Miller, PhD, "almost certainly result in increased feelings of pleasant energy. And that’s true whether you expect this to occur or not.”
Short on time or don’t feel like taking a walk? Just get outside, even if it’s only for a few minutes. Try closing your eyes and basking in the feeling of sun on your face (just remember your sunscreen). Throw in some deep breathing and you’ll be feeling relaxed and rejuvenated in no time.
You don’t have to splurge on something fancy to improve your mood. In fact, buying yourself something small that you love is a great way to improve the day. It could be a latte, your favorite flowers, a small treat from the local bakery, or whatever else will make you smile.
Scent has a big impact on our moods, and you can buy candles with proven mood-enhancing scents. Lemon, rosemary, fresh cut grass, and other scents have all been found to make people feel better.
Think about the things you tell yourself? Are these thoughts kind and loving or negative and judgmental?
Try something new and give yourself some positive affirmations. Repeating statements like, “I am happy. I am productive. I feel great,” can have a surprising effect on mood.
Actively being grateful has a number of health benefits, including enhanced psychological well-being. Some days you might have to dig deep to realize what you’re grateful for, but there’s always something there.
A cluttered space can overwhelm an already stressed out mind. If you have the time, take a few minutes to tidy up your office, room, or home.
Dark chocolate, coffee, oysters, kale, raw walnuts, and raw cashews are “scientifically proven to lift our spirits,” according to this article from NBC News.
Do you have a favorite song that always makes you feel good? Turn it up and sing your heart out (extra endorphin points for dancing).
Pets improve our health, especially where mood is concerned. Take a few minutes to bond with your dog, cat, or other pet, and pay attention to how you feel afterwards. If you don’t have a pet of your own, you could visit the dog park or stop by an animal shelter.