Activities to Improve Your Mood
No matter your profession, marital status or personality, one universal experience we can all relate to is the feeling of being stressed out or feeling blue. This state can actually influence your health, as it can lead to muscle tension, headaches and poor sleeping habits. Plus, the feeling of being overwhelmed or depressed can, at times, flat out suck.
One of the most productive steps you can take is to invest in your own happiness by pursuing activities that are proven to relieve tension and boost morale. Not sure where to start? Below are some suggestions to get you started.
This list would not be complete without suggesting that you occasionally raise your heart rate, get those magical endorphins going and sweat out any frustration you may have. Exercise can put extra pep in your step by boosting your oxygen intake and getting your blood pumping, giving you additional energy.
Physical benefits aside, there are plenty of psychological reasons to get moving. Did you know that spending time in the great outdoors has been proven to lift your spirits (especially if you’re by bodies of water)? By being active, you’re also doing something positive for yourself, boosting your confidence and sense of self-worth.
Additionally, those who regularly workout are less likely to experience problems sleeping. If you find yourself unable to find the motivation needed to routinely exercise, consider joining a social organization to find others with similar goals and add a dose of fun to your repetitive physical activity.
Pick up an instrument
You don’t have to be Mozart or Led Zeppelin to reap the benefits of playing a tune. Countless studies have shown that listening to creating music can boost your mood and has the power to relax the nervous system and have your heart rate match the rhythm of the song you’re listening to.
Your piano, violin, clarinet or other instrument can become a medium through which children and adults can healthily express feelings and, reversely, also has the ability to have the conveyed sentiments of the song influence your outlook. Plus, let’s not undervalue the sense of accomplishment that comes along with tackling a challenging piece!
Because playing music is supposed to be fun and not an additional source of stress or financial strain, consider starting out with a smaller, affordable instrument like a ukulele, keyboard, xylophone or recorder found here. Options like these will allow you to test out your commitment and learn basic music theory without having to commit to a more challenging, expensive piece worth thousands.
Plant some flowers
As previously mentioned, simply exposing yourself to nature can help to relieve anxiety and ease depression, but some activities are more effective than others. One hobby that is highly recommended is gardening. After all, by contributing to the greenery and getting your hands and knees a little dirty, you’re bonding to the environment on a whole other level.
While there is going to be a sense of pride that comes from watching your plants grow from seeds to trees, joining others to collectively care for a community garden will allow you to feel more connected to your neighborhood. Moreover, if you grow some edible goodies like fruits and vegetables, you’ll be able to afordably nourish your body with the vitamins and nutrients it needs to optimally function.
Self-pity and stress can be like quicksand, and sometimes the best way to climb out of the pit is to lend a hand to others. By temporarily focusing on helping those around you, your own problems won’t become the focal point of your every thought. By witnessing how much you can contribute to the happiness and welfare of others, volunteering can provide a renewed sense of purpose, as well as a wave of dopamine and other positive hormones that comes with the sense of goodwill.
Plus, by helping those that are less fortunate, it may grant you a new sense of gratitude for what you have in your life.
So there you have it; four ways in which you naturally better your mood. This is, by no means, a comprehensive list, so share with us below activities that you have found help you overcome the blues.
Article by Rachel Lowe