Feeling in need of a mood boost? Here are seven natural and healthy ways to perk yourself up and put the spring back in your step.
1. Eat a healthy diet
While eating a healthy diet is good for your body, it’s also good for your mood – particularly if you avoid the sugar highs and inevitable lows that come with eating high-sugar foods. To give your mood an extra boost, try to include the following foods in your diet:
2. Work up a sweat
One of the reasons exercise makes us feel so good is because it stimulates the release of endorphins, one of the body’s happy hormones. So, if you’re feeling a little down, make sure that you get regular exercise – and opt for activities that you really enjoy, whether that’s sweating it out in an RFK class, running on the beach or hiking with friends.
3. Calm your mind
If you’re feeling anxious and stressed, it might be a good idea to take up meditation. According to Mayoclinic.org, this age-old practice can “give you a sense of calm, peace and balance that can benefit both your emotional well-being and your overall health.” If you’re not sure where to start, consider signing up for one of our introductory courses, where we’ll introduce you to the basics and equip you to join a regular class.
4. Spend time with friends
Friends and family can be a great comfort in times of stress and anxiety, so don’t be afraid to lean on your support system when you need a pick-me-up. Getting out and having fun with those closest to you will help take your mind off your worries and hopefully give you some perspective. Just remember to return the favour when one of them needs your support.
5. Be grateful
Sometimes all it takes to make you feel a little happier is to remind yourself of the things you’re grateful for – and there are a number of studies that back this up. So, you may want to start a gratitude journal, where you record something you’re thankful for each day; it’s a great way to stay focused on all the positive things in your life.
6. Get enough sleep
Getting a good night’s sleep can leave you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated, while getting too little shut-eye can make you feel tired and affect your ability to focus. According to the Better Health Channel, it can also affect your mood. Studies show people who are sleep deprived report increases in negative moods (anger, frustration, irritability, sadness) and decreases in positive moods.
Wondering how many hours are recommended per night? The National Sleep Foundation suggests the following:
Teenagers: 8–10 hours
Adults: 7–9 hours
Older adults: 7–8 hours
Tip: If you struggle to fall asleep, make this relaxing 20-minute yoga routine part of your bedtime ritual.
7. Practise yoga
While we know that yoga improves flexibility and muscle tone, there are a growing number of studies that suggest it also helps to lift your mood. For example, Science Daily cites a Boston University School of Medicine study which found that “yoga may be superior to other forms of exercise in its positive effect on mood and anxiety.” So, if you’re ready to hit the mat and reap the many mind and body benefits of a regular yoga practice, join any of our weekly classes at Bondi Junction or Bligh Street.