We know how frustrating it can be when you’re in a bad mood and all that you can focus on is whatever put you in that bad mood in the first place. Even if you want to keep your mind off of whatever is bothering you, we often find ourselves focusing more on these thoughts when we’re less inclined to want to acknowledge them.
Of course, investigating your feelings and unpacking your bad mood is a healthy coping mechanism, but overthinking the situation can lead to negative feelings of self-doubt, anxiety, and even depression. Instead, try implementing some of these tips, like indulging in a little retail therapy for a new gold chain purchase or practicing daily meditation, to get yourself out of that funk.
Give Meditation a Try
Research has shown over and over again that everybody can benefit from meditation, even if you only practice for five minutes every day. It has been proven to help reduce feelings of stress, anxiety and depression in addition to some physical benefits such as a strengthened immune system.
People have different preferences on when they like to mediate, but many people will begin their day with this activity to get their mind sharp and have them feeling relaxed and ready to take on whatever the world throws at them. Others prefer to meditate at night before bed to calm their thoughts and prepare to fall asleep. Once you’ve learned some basic mediation techniques, you can easily begin using them throughout the day whenever you’re beginning to feel stressed or overwhelmed, including simple methods like breathing exercises.
Do Something with a Friend
One of the easiest ways to get your mind off of unpleasant thoughts is by hanging out with a friend or family member that you’re close with. If you feel as though you need to talk about what’s happening in your life, a good friend can help you work through some of your thoughts and emotions, helping you to get into a better head space.
If you want to just disengage from your thoughts completely and distract yourself with something else entirely, hanging with a friend is still a great solution. You can focus on them and what is going on in their life by asking about their job, family, significant other, etc. Typically, when you’re spending time with a friend, you’re also participating in some other kind of activity, which is another great way to distract your mind.
Indulge in Some Retail Therapy
Although retail therapy is not the long-term solution to many of our problems, it can elevate our mood and distract us from our thoughts for a bit. Retail therapy is a phrase used to describe the act of going out and shopping, usually for items that you don’t necessarily need but more for products that you want, as a way to make yourself happy.
Of course, relying on material items for your happiness is a very short-term way to elevate your mood, but, from time to time, it can be helpful. When you’re feeling down, think about your favorite thing to browse for or purchase like gold chains, clothing, or shoes. Even just window shopping without actually making a purchase can help distract you because there are so many other things to look at and focus on instead of the thoughts running through your head.
Exercise or Participate in an Activity
Physical activity is a great way to pull yourself out of a funk because, when you exercise, endorphins are released, which is a chemical that produces feelings of joy. Not only will physical activity make you feel mentally better but also physical. When we’re feeling healthy and proud of our achievements, it’s difficult to fall back into a bad mood.
Although many people think of exercise as necessarily evil, it’s really not. Necessary, yes; evil, no. Exercise doesn’t have to be daunting or painful. In fact, it never should feel that way. If you find an activity that you really enjoy, you can get a workout in and also participate in something you enjoy. Find a local league for your favorite sport or attend classes like yoga, spin, or barre. Implementing exercise into your daily routine will vastly improve your overall attitude.
Treat Yourself to Your Favorite Restaurant or Meal
Though we do want to be wary of overeating when we’re trying to use food as a distraction, it’s okay to let ourselves dig into some of our favorite foods when we’re feeling down.
If you enjoy cooking, this is a great activity to use as a distraction because it takes a certain level of concentration and keeps your hands, and mind, busy while you work. You can try making your favorite dish or even invite a few close friends over for a casual dinner party.
You should try to avoid that stereotypical movie scene where the character is seated on the couch eating his or her way through an entire pint of ice cream, but you can certainly use food as a bit of a coping mechanism as long as you’re paying careful attention to how much and how often you’re indulging in unhealthy foods.
A very healthy way to cope with your emotions is by starting a journal. Writing down your thoughts helps you to think through your emotions and feelings and often leads you to a place of growth. Once it becomes a daily habit, your brain learns that your journal is a place where you can admit and explore some of your thoughts you may be hesitant to discuss out loud. Think of journaling as a personal therapy session. Anytime you’re feeling down or overwhelmed, try to write even a brief entry about what is bothering you and how you can overcome it.
Practice Healthy Coping Habits to Elevate Your Mood
Nobody enjoys feeling stressed out or sad, which is why we all look for healthy ways to cope with these emotions. Next time you’re feeling down, try some short-term solutions like taking a yoga class or treat yourself to those stylish shoes you’ve been eyeing. This kind of retail therapy can take your mind off of trivial but frustrating problems. To deal with deeper, long-lasting issues, implement daily routines like journaling and meditation to improve your self-esteem and lower anxiety.