How to Get Yourself Out of a Bad Mood
Even the most cheerful gal in the group occasionally finds herself in a bad mood. It’s not always easy to immediately feel gratitude or to see the upside of a situation. Often, there are a series of things that go wrong which compound and create the perfect storm for a foul mood.
We can all agree that staying in a glum mood for too long becomes depressing, deflating, and unproductive. So in this post, I’m sharing with you a few ways to turn your bad mood around.
Try These 3 Techniques to Go from Grouchy to Feeling Good
1. Reach out
Many of us tend to withdraw when we feel down. When we’re in a bad mood, we shrink away from chatting with friends, from wanting to talk to anyone and potentially have to pretend to be happy. It’s instinct for most of us to want to withdraw, to slink into our protective shells and hide until we feel better.
While going within can be helpful for healing and introspection, after a while, it becomes harder and harder to climb back out. Sometimes, reaching out for a lifeline makes all the difference between staying stuck in Doomsville and getting out.
To reach out doesn’t have to mean a long, deep, personal, conversation with someone close (although that might work if you’re feeling it). It could simply be a brief text to a friend that reads something like, “hey, we haven’t talked much lately, how are you?” Which starts a dialogue where you can reply, “I feel so down” (with an inserted poop emoji).
Reaching out starts an interaction that I guarantee will end with helping you (and maybe both of you) feel more supported and in less of a bad mood.
“There’s nothing better than a friend, unless it’s a friend with chocolate.” – Linda Grayson
Sometimes the mere act of expressing of how down you feel to another human being, can boost your mood.
2. Grab an inspirational snack
Nope, I don’t mean the kind of snack that goes in your mouth. I mean get yourself a quick nip (not the kind in the bottle either) of your fave, pick-me-up, trusty good-mojo sources.
Feed yourself something that’s quick and easy to access that inspires you, i.e. a passage from a motivational book you keep handy; a go-to inspo feel-good social media source; music that cheers you; a family photo that makes you smile and feel grateful; a favorite prayer; a two-minute snuggle-sesh with your dog; a favorite quote that always works to spark your optimism.
Just like the nutritionists tell us to keep easy to reach for, healthy snacks prepped and ready to eat in our fridge so that we make better food choices… I’m telling you to try having your go-to inspo-sources handy, prepped, and ready to go for when you need better mood lifting choices. An inspirational snack can nourish your spirit and get you out your bad mood.
3. Turn to your breath
A bad mood might be calling you to come back to the basics, back to the simplest reminder that you are a living, shifting, emotional-roller-coaster-riding human being – your breath.
Taking a few deep, slow, and intentional breaths is naturally calming and grounding. A minute of conscious breathing, meaning you’re thinking about and focused on your breath, (as opposed to breathing automatically) can be deeply meditative and restorative. Sometimes, mood shifts take only a moment of centering our minds back into our bodies using our breath.
When we’re in a bad mood, it’s often because we’ve let our thoughts get away from us. We’ve allowed our minds to drag us back to past hurts or to propel us forward into future worries.
Use your breath to re-center yourself in the present moment. Visualize your breath pulling in the present moment and exhaling the dark and fearful past and future thoughts.
“You can use the flow of your breath to clear your mind and calm your nervous system.” – Gabby Bernstein
When you pause to breathe with intention, you are making a choice. And just like that, it’s also possible to choose to snap out of the gloom. I was a skeptic too, but breathwork consistently does wonders for my frame of mind.
Use your bad mood to gain perspective
It doesn’t matter what’s happening around you – there will always be an endless supply of reasons to feel down. That’s just part of the human gig. Things don’t always go the way we’d like them to, no matter how attentive we are about staying high vibe and about keeping our heart in the right place.
It’s a matter of choice again, isn’t it? The choice of our perspective.
Bad moods teach us lessons about ourselves, about our courage and strength, about our emotional triggers, about how and when our boundaries are being crossed, about how we are balancing our energy, about recognizing what truly matters to us.
Shoot, gloomy moods can even help us. They can remind us of how tender we are (underneath our “I’m ok” shield of armor). They can refresh our capacity to sympathize with and have empathy for others who are suffering.
It’s unreasonable to think that we could feel happy all the time. After all, moods are just that – moods. They are supposed to be temporary.
So, why wouldn’t we be open to anything that might help us move out of Doomsville a little more quickly?!