Thursday, 20 August 2020

Little Lifts: 9 Easy Ways to Boost your Mood


A ring of pastel coloured flowers, containing the title text 9 Ways to Boost Your Mood. I don't want to state the obvious here, but the last few months have been really tough for lots of people for all sorts of reasons. It has become harder for even the most upbeat personality to stay positive and anxiety and low mood have become a lot more common and harder to shake off. It may not be possible to do the things you normally do to make yourself feel better at the moment, so here are my favourite ways to lift a low mood, within the confines of your own home. I hope they help you too when you're feeling down and please feel free to add your own tried and tested mood lifters in the comments.


As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from purchases made through the links in this post. I use it to buy biscuits. 

Music


Everyone has a favourite song I'm sure, but it can be a favourite for many reasons; maybe it reminds you of a special time or carries an important message. Whatever the reason, a certain song can really help to improve your mood. Whether you need to find some energy, or just feel a bit better about life, the right song can do the trick. Here are some of my favourites.

Energy songs: Mr Blue Sky - ELO, Hooked on a Feeling - Blue Swede, Don't Stop Me Now - Queen, Final Countdown- Europe

Uplifting songs: Something Beautiful - Robbie Williams, The Light - Disturbed, Shine - Take That,
Happy - Pharrell Williams

Friends


It's important to have friends who you can offload onto, who will understand and not judge you. Sometimes even being that friend to someone else can help you too, because it takes your mind off your own problems for a while. Even if neither of you has any particular problems, just talking rubbish with someone who speaks your language can lift your spirits. It's always good to see people face to face, human interaction is beneficial in so many ways, but where that isn't possible, don't underestimate the power of the internet. Friends-in-the-computer can provide a valuable lifeline for people who are unable to get out and there are lots of  Lockdown-based Facebook groups where you can make friends if you don't feel confident venturing out much yet. Or, search for groups of people you share a hobby with; such as slimming, cooking, or even cat pictures! Some of my best friends, who I have the most in common with, live in my laptop and I know I can always rely on them to be there for me if I need them.

Exercise


This gets mentioned often as a stress reliever and general mood enhancer, but there is a good reason for that. Exercise releases endorphins (happy hormones) that make you feel a bit better generally, as well as giving you that smug feeling of having done something healthy. You can also tailor the exercise, depending on your mood. If you are feeling angry, or frustrated, you could pick something vigorous that will help you release your frustrations. If you are feeling stressed, you could opt for a long walk, or maybe even some Yoga. There are lots of YouTube videos with Yoga routines for varying abilities, even absolute beginners. I used to go to the gym, which I loved, but I have now invested in an air glider, as I don't feel confident returning to sweatsville just yet. Here's a link to a similar glider I found on Amazon. It says it's for the elderly and I'm a little bit offended, but they are really good for low impact exercise if you have joint problems. Another low impact exercise that I'm really fond of is rebounding, which is a grown-up way of saying 'bouncing on a trampoline'.  You remember that feeling of euphoria you used to get from bouncing as a child? You can do that now, it's a legitimate exercise. Bouncy castles don't count though, sorry. Rebounders have decreased considerably in price since I got mine. This Femor fitness mini trampoline, with a useful handle for balance, is very similar to the one I have.

Decluttering


This is my favourite activity for cheering me up, but it only works if you are a clutter-bug in the first place! It doesn't matter what you clear out, it could be your make up, wardrobe, even a kitchen cupboard, the point is, a fairly mindless task can take your mind off things, as well as giving you something to work towards and a sense of achievement at the end. The best part for me, because I'm basically a child, is that I find things I forgot I owned, which is like getting a little present for your efforts. It can actually be a bonding experience too, I've recently been helping my son sort his lego into colours and types, which is incredibly boring and utterly mindless, but we both find it surprisingly relaxing! 

Flowers


I love having fresh flowers, they really brighten a room and lift the spirits. If you pick something with a strong scent, like lilies, you'll get a lovely whiff as you walk past too. They don't even have to be expensive. At this time of year, I sometimes fill a small jug with lavender from the garden, which smells amazing and has a rustic charm. I was lucky enough to receive these beautiful blooms as a gift from my nephew's recent wedding and they make me smile every time I walk into the room. 

|A variety of pastel-coloured flowers, including mauve roses, arranged in a vase

Self Care


I know there is a belief that life shouldn't be about what you look like, but I believe that if you think you look like a bag of crap, you'll probably feel like a bag of crap. Spending some time on yourself is good therapy anyway, but if you look better, you will probably feel better too. If money and social movement isn't an issue, a trip to the spa works wonders, but if that's not an option, there are lots of treatments you can do at home, for not much money. This post on Low-Cost Natural Beauty Tips might give you some ideas. My favourite product for a quick facial pick-me-up is Garnier Fresh-Mix Tissue Mask, when I'm feeling particularly old and tired, it always makes me seem a little more... alive! 

A Film, or a Book


... Whichever you prefer. The point is to pick something you can get really lost in for a little while. A comedy, or a fantasy, whatever floats your boat, that two hours of thought-free me-time is a great way to give yourself a much-needed break. It's what I love about the cinema; even if it's a film you don't especially want to see, you know where the children are for the duration and it's a chance to relax and unwind. Personally, I really enjoy the Marvel films for a true break from reality, there's just enough to concentrate on, with a lot of silly too, it's the perfect antidote to a rubbish day. If you can't go to the cinema, a film night is something that's easy to recreate at home. Make or buy your favourite snack, whether it's cookies, popcorn, or something completely random, get the family together, or tuck up on your own and pick your favourite flick. 

Brushing your Hair 


This is another tip that involves making yourself look better in order to feel better. Spending time trying out a new hairstyle, or maybe a conditioning treatment is another good way to get a little me-time, but the simple act of brushing your hair is believed to release endorphins which should make you feel calmer and happier. Sometimes, for fun, I like to brush my hair upside down, so that I look like Chewbacca, but that's another story. 

Daylight Lamps


If you find yourself really struggling to function when the weather turns grey and this problem occurs every year, you might want to consider investing in a daylight lamp. I reviewed the Lumie Brightspark SAD lightbox a couple of years ago and we still use it all the time. Not only is it great for counteracting the effects of a sunless weather spell, but it has other uses too. It's great for improving the quality of lighting for indoor photography, or if you need a really bright light for doing something fiddly, involving small parts. 

A Word about Depression


This post was written from my personal experience of sometimes feeling temporarily bleurgh and needing a little lift to cheer myself up. It is not intended as an antidote to more serious long term conditions. If you find yourself feeling very unhappy for a long time, unable to function as you normally would, or if you are unable to help yourself feel better, get help. Talk to a friend, family member or one of the charities listed below. Sometimes it's not possible to help yourself out of a bad patch, and that's not your fault. There's help out there, please take it. 

Mind - The Mental Health Charity

Depression UK

Mental Health Foundation

Samaritans




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16 comments

  1. Great post this! I always fine exercise is such a key part of keeping me in a good mental mind!

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  2. I am in a bad mood this Monday so I better go and do some decluttering with some music on!

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  3. Great post! Music and flowers always cheers me up.

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  4. Ah lovely list! Decluttering must be my fave on it and I always put me blue sky on to pick me up!

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  5. I’ll be getting my Lumie light out soon - I can feel my energy levels starting to drop

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  6. Some great tips here, I love a good de-clutter for making me feel better. We have so much clutter it drives me loopy at times, as everyone just dumps stuff on fireplace or dining room table x

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  7. Totally agree with all these points, I've never heard of a Lumie light mind, will have a look into those as they sound good!

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  8. When it comes to boosting my mood I find exercise, listening to some of my favourite music, cooking, spending time with friends and family or a cosy evening on the sofa watching a film with my husband can work wonders.

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  9. Music helps my mood everytime. Sunlight and exercise helps too.

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  10. I always play some music in my headphones when my baby is asleep, it really helps me to relax in my own bubble - even if it's just a bus ride!

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  11. Totally agree that the Lumi boxes are worth buying! They help so much around this time of year.

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  12. I’m a huge devlittering and cleaning fan to get me going and give me a boost!

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  13. I am dreading the darker nights and the Lumie lamp sounds great. Will certainly look into getting one

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  14. "I use it to buy biscuits." lol

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    Replies
    1. Never underestimate the creative power of a digestive!

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