11 Quick Ways To Shift Your Mood
Psychologists and coaches use the word ‘state’ to refer to your state of being in any given moment. It’s made up of how you’re thinking and what you’re believing. How you’re feeling emotionally with your mood and physically in your body. All of these things together contribute to your overall state in any given moment. Think of it like the surface of the ocean that changes and flows. There can be big waves, pretty little waves, no waves, sunshine, storms coming and going, etc.
Upon inspection, some of us find that our state tends to shift around quite quickly. We might be motivated and cheerful one minute and flat and despondent the very next. Other times we might find our state to be pretty steady. For example you might feel pretty even keeled and enjoy a sense of gladness as your steady standard. But what causes these shifting tides within?
Many things contribute to your state in any given moment. What are some of the influences you can think of? Here are a few influences that come to mind:
- The weather
- What you’re thinking
- What you are believing about life, yourself and other people
- Your self concept
- What you have been eating, drinking or consuming
- Your bodies health
- Any medication taken
- How you have moved your body or exercised recently
- A variety of chemical and electrical events within the body or indeed surrounding the body
- Images, ideas, words and sounds received through any kind of media
- Exposure to something in particular ie: music, nature, art, temperature, poetry or fragrance
- Interactions with other people
- Any other beliefs such as astrology or religion
- Other unknown factors
How to shift out of a mood
It can be handy to have a good awareness of your state. When you’re aware of how you feel you’re in a position of self knowledge and you can choose to do something to shift your mood. (I’ve written about being aware of your state while clothes shopping here)
Shifting your mood by doing something simple like a yoga pose might not address the root cause of your mood. For example, if you feel flat because you’ve been made redundant, then shifting into a happier state via the downward dog yoga pose probably won’t secure you a new job in and of itself. But, what it might do is shift your perspective (state) in such a way that you become a little less stressed and a little more inspired and resourceful while you are in the process of finding a new job.
Note/ I just want to add in here that there’s no judgement meant as to how you’re feeling. However you are is ok. Sometimes feeling flat is part of a process and leads to its own realisations. But that’s a larger topic for discussion another day…
Here are 11 of the best-loved state changers I have come across in my classes. Everyone is different and these might not suit everyone. But I hope they inspire you to find state changers that work perfectly for you, and your unique body-mind.
- Cold shower or hot/cold/hot/cold/ blasts in the shower à la Wim Hoff
- A walk in nature/fresh air
- 20 mins of cardio exercise. I.E running, cycling, swimming, skipping
- Doing a breathing exercise
- Doing a Forward Bend stretch or a Shoulder Stand (as seen in yoga, if suitable for your body)
- Phoning a good friend or family member to say hello
- Helping someone else/ altruistic acts. If you can’t physically help someone you can close your eyes and imagine sending someone good wishes
- Playing an uplifting song
- Spraying a lovely perfume or fragrance
- Singing, chanting or dancing
- Gardening, or being with flowers, petting animals
(I left off of the list: napping, having a beer and comfort eating/shopping as these seem a little less sustainable if leant on too frequently. 🍻 )
So, what do you think of my list of state changers?
Which have you used and which others haven’t I mentioned yet? It’s nice to have a few healthy state changes in your toolkit. When challenges pop up as they inevitably do, you will have some tools at hand to help you feel a bit better. A cold shower and a forward bend won’t secure world peace, but every little helps. Once you change your state, by however much, you’ll be standing in a new position. And from the new vantage point things may look a little different and new actions might arise.
I don’t know who said it but there is a saying I like:
If you change the way you look at things the things you look at change.
I’d love to know what you think and how you spot and shift your state, leave a comment and let me know. This post is here to inspire you, but if you’re suffering from ill mental health be sure to consult with your doctor or therapist for expert support.