A mood, like a season can change and fluctuate. I”m not certain if it is just me, or has the beginning to 2018 been a bit of an uphill battle? I am not usually one to mop about. Sure, I enjoy the occasional, let’s stay cozy in our pj’s and watch old movies kind of day, as much as the next guy. But, weeks of behavior such as this, reeks of something gone awry.
Here’s the thing about moods. Whether they are happy, exuberant ones or the kind that give the word a bad name, they attract like. What I mean is, if you are in a foul mood, then you can pretty much be guaranteed to experience others in the same kind of mood.
We can blame it on the weather, the alignment of planets, or the fact that it’s Monday. Either way, I am not content to let a sour mood decide my experience with the rest of the world. And given that you are here reading this blog, I am guessing that you aren’t willing to either.
So, here are 5 tips to boost your mood.
- Get out in nature
I get it! It is raining, snowing, wintering (insert foul mood provoking situation here). This could quite likely be the last thing you want to do right now. But trust me when I say, times like these call for drastic measures. It is often when we feel the least like going outside, that we discover it was the best thing we could have done for ourselves.
- Get quiet
Whether you show up regularly to your meditation practice or are going to try it for the first time. Now is the best time to put some effort in to getting quiet. When you shut off everything around you, except your own focused breath, it becomes that much easier to get clear about what you want and what you don’t. Sitting in quiet contemplation, gives you permission to ask yourself some tough questions. You might just find that you’ve known the answer all along, you just needed to get quiet to put your finger on it. Looking for an active way to get quiet? Check out my title, Breathe. It is an inspirational, photographic journey that allows you to get lost in the quiet while you enjoy the images and consider the words.
- Find gratitude
The best and quickest mood lifting remedy out there is gratitude. This by far, my most favorite way to start my day. Begin with the simplest of things. Set a timer for 5 minutes. Begin each sentence with, “I am grateful for…” Fill in the blank with everything and anything you can think of. I am grateful for the socks on my feet. I am grateful for the air I have to breathe. I am grateful for the heart beating in my chest. Keep adding to your list until time is up. You will feel lighter, happier, and more free with just 5 minutes of concentrated gratitude. If you’re looking for another approach to gratitude that adds another level to your daily gratitude practice, check out my previous blog post, I Am Gratitude.
You may not be the yogi of the neighborhood, nor do I expect you all to know the names and proper execution of each pose. But I do know that the body needs to move and stretching is a quick and easy way to honor ourselves. Lift your arms above your head. Bend at your waist. Do whatever feels good to you as you give your body a little attention and stretch. Add a little focus of breath to your stretch and you’ll up the mood boosting benefit of stretching.
- Pay someone else a compliment
What? Where did that one come from you ask? Have you ever noticed that a compliment has the ability to evoke a smile from both the giver and the receiver? It costs you nothing, yet is worth a lot more than you can even imagine. The rules are, be genuine, be sincere, be yourself, and let the compliment come from a place of joy.