A low mood or depression can eat away at a person?s quality of life; it can be for a short period of time or last a lifetime. Although there is no quick fix, you can, however, find small and useful ways to help lessen your feelings of depression. If you?re currently experiencing low mood, here are simple changes you can make to feel mentally healthier and happier, improving your overall well-being and quality of life. Read the 11 best ways to naturally boost your mood.
- Look at the Positive Side
Your mindset will determine your happiness. Rather than looking at the negatives of a situation, look on the bright side. Actively look for reasons to be optimistic. For example, if it?s raining outside, think about how it will benefit your lawn. An optimistic approach can train your brain to think more positively, so you will feel happier.
- A Good Night?s Sleep
Sleep deprivation can negatively impact your mood throughout the day. Many experts therefore recommend people living with depression to get enough sleep each night, and they should maintain a sleeping schedule that requires them to go to bed and wake at the same time every day. Of course, different people will have different sleep needs; for example, you may need to invest in a more supportive pillow, or you should click here to find the best sleeping position for your situation.
- Enjoy More Sunlight
A dark room can equal a dark mood, as a lack of sunlight can cause seasonal affective disorder (SAD). It?s therefore important to enjoy as much natural sunlight as possible. So, open your curtains first thing in the morning to welcome daylight, and turn on lamps as soon as the sun goes down.
- Swap Your Lightbulbs
You might be shocked to learn that your home?s lighting could also be responsible for your poor mood. It might be a wise move to swap incandescent lightbulbs for compact fluorescent bulbs, which are ideal for high-traffic areas within the home, such as the living room or kitchen.
Light can be an effective way to battle a low mood or depression. One study into depression found that 50% of participants reported a better mood and improved sleep after experiencing three weeks of bright light therapy. The researchers believe as little as one hour of bright indoor light could potentially be as effective as antidepressants, but offers zero side effects.
- Boost Physical Activity
A lack of exercise could be responsible for mental and emotional issues, which could be affecting your daily life. Take control of your mind and body by introducing more physical activity into your daily routine. It?s beneficial because exercise can release feel-good endorphins, which can lift your mood. It can also satisfy every human?s desire to both perform and excel.
Boost the benefits of exercising by working out in the great outdoors. Eleven studies published in Environmental Science and Technology discovered that people who exercised outdoors not only felt more energetic, but they were also much more likely to continue to work out. So, if you want to clear your mind and feel happier and healthier, enjoy an outdoor exercise, such as running, ice skating, cycling, surfing or cross-country skiing.
- Kiss More
A little bit of kissing can make a big difference to your personal happiness. What?s more, kissing will also allow dopamine to circulate throughout a person?s blood stream, which can stimulate the same area of the brain as cocaine, so it?s a natural high that will boost your mood. Smooching your partner isn?t just good for fighting depression, as it can also improve your heart health. That?s because it can reduce cholesterol in both men and women, improving both physical and mental well-being.
- Start Singing
It doesn?t matter if you?re tone deaf or can belt a song like Adele, you should start singing regardless. Music therapists believe you can lift your mood by singing regularly. What?s more, it is thought to improve a person?s immunity by increasing antibodies, so it?s a fun way to fight illnesses. So, there?s never been a better reason to grab a hairbrush or use the shower head to sing your heart out.
- Pet a Dog (or a Cat)
Did you know that petting a dog for as little as 15 minutes can release various feel-good hormones into your body, such as serotonin, oxytocin and prolactin? It can also help to lower cortisol, a stress hormone. It?s also believed that stroking a cat can have similar health benefits, meaning both cat and dog lovers can enjoy the benefits of owning a furry friend.
A Clark University study researched the benefits smiling can have on a person?s mood. The study required one group of participants to frown and another group to smile. The group were then show cartoons. The group that smiled found the cartoons funnier in comparison to the group that frowned. As a result, researchers believe smiling can activate the brain?s happiness centers. So, even if you?re not in the best mood, you should smile, as you may soon feel a little bit happier.
- Eat Mood-Lifting Foods
The foods you consume can determine your happiness. A University of Pittsburgh study found people who had low levels of omega-3 were more likely to experience depression, so aim to eat more salmon, tuna and mackerel. Additionally, cut out fatty and foods high in saturates. Avoid junk and fast food at all costs.
- Create a Manageable Schedule
A demanding personal or professional life can cause depression symptoms. For this reason, you must take the time to create a manageable schedule that will not impact on your personal happiness. Try to never take on more than you can manage, and aim to break complex tasks into smaller, manageable pieces, so you can realistically meet deadlines. Slowing down might be all you need to do to feel happy once again.
Of course, though, if you?re experiencing low mood and major depressive episodes, then make sure to check-in with your doctor. They will be able to provide you with the right care and offer you the support you need.
Have you got any helpful advice on how to naturally your boost your mood? Please write a comment below.