let’s be honest, many of us could do with a boost to our moods right now. These are tough times, and being restricted in what we can do and where we can go can have disastrous effects on our mental health. We took a look at some simple lifestyle changes to help your mood.
Living alone, i have little desire to drink alcohol at home. It is something i do socially, with other people. Snacking on the other hand is a different matter. It has been a real problem for me during the lock down, as has my diet in general. I worked from home before, but the extra time stuck in my flat has certainly affected my health in a bad way. To fill in the gaps in a day and alleviate boredom, i have certainly turned to comfort eating. So i have had to show discipline when buying food for the home. But additionally, what snacks i have i keep out of view. Having snacks in clear view means i will eat them that day. But out of sight, out of mind. Treats last longer if you sometimes forget you have them. And if i think i am hungry, i drink some water first to test whether it is simply slight dehydration. The symptoms are extremely similar.
So let’s stay on diet. Mood can be greatly influenced by diet. A life of stodgy and processed foods will lower energy levels and your mood in double quick time. Healthy food, and food that gives you energy, are the perfect way to keep your mood up. And whilst there is no simple formula for eating well, the old adage of eating plenty of green things is a good place to start.
If you can, move. This is advice i need to adhere to more myself. Even if you walk round the block, or half of it, it really helps to stretch your legs and get away from your new prison. When i play badminton, i rarely feel better, mentally than immediately after i have played. The effect of exercise, at any level, on mental health, should never be underestimated.
I can be a real slob, no doubt about it. But when i do clean the flat, the difference in my mood is astonishing. That is why it is so important i stay on top of matters. And being at home so often means i have no excuse not to. The difference in my mood when i walk into a room that is spotless with everything in its right place with little clutter is huge. Compared to a room with things lying about and in need of a good dusting!
If you want your mood to improve, then you need to laugh. So watch something funny. It’s that simple. The power of laughter and of smiling is beyond description. Even if the fix is temporary, it is well worth it.
Traditionally this is something i would laugh about using. Me, doing meditation? Well, yes actually. It is not meditation in the full sense perhaps. But these apps are about using them as little or as much to help you in your particular situation. And the key is to finding relaxation, personally. A soothing voice and some gentle music and gentle exercises can transform how you feel in a short space of time. Give it a go!
Seems rather obvious, but do not force yourself to sleep. Do so when you are tired, and try to be productive at other times. Being productive certainly helps my mood. It makes me feel i have made the most of a day. Sitting around does not do me good, even if that is what i truly want to do. And sleep is as important for your health as diet. So get at least 7 hours a night.
It’s good to talk! Do not underestimate the power of catching up with an old friend, or a bit of gossip! Don’t let the world pass you by. Be proactive, and if you think of a friend you haven’t spoken to for a while, then pick up that phone immediately.