We all experience bad days. You know, those series of unfortunate events — a spilled coffee, an elbow to a door frame, a parking ticket — that snowball to create the worst day of all time? Usually, the day will pass and our life (and luck) will return to normal. But when there’s a worldwide pandemic at play? Well, that’s a different story. The bad days don’t seem to end.
Right now, it’s more important than ever before to care for our health — body, mind and soul. If you’re struggling with the effects of COVID-19, remember you have the power to control your feelings. Take guidance from these instant mood-boosting tips. You’ll be feeling a bit better in no time.
Get some vitamin D
Sounds simple, right? That’s because it is! If you’re trapped in the office or at home, take a break and head outside — even if it’s just to stand on the curb. Nothing boosts happiness quite like a few rays of sunshine.
Take a deep breath
In fact, take a few. Our favourite method is the 4 7 8 breathing exercise, which instructs you to breathe in for a count of four, hold for a count of seven and breathe out for a count of eight. Do this a couple of times and watch your worries melt away.
Fake a smile
Ever heard the phrase “fake it til you make it”? Well, the same idea applies to smiling. Even though you probably don’t feel like it at the time, fake smiling is thought to lift your mood, because it’s tricking your brain into thinking you’re happy.
Think of something that didn’t happen to you today
Avoid dwelling on the bad things that are happening right now, and focus on the good. Sure, you might be sick of the four walls of your house, but are you healthy? This trick will remind you that things can always be worse.
Take 5 minutes to meditate
When we’re having a bad day, we’re often in a state of stress and panic. The antidote? A couple of minutes of pure relaxation. Download a meditation app (we like Insight Timer, Calm and 1 Giant Mind) and retreat into a calming space. You’ll feel better when you come out.
Call someone that makes you happy
For some, this is their mum, and for others, it’s a best friend. Think about those people in your life that always make you laugh, and call them for a quick chat. We might not be able to visit our family and friends in person, but we’re lucky to have technology to keep us connected. Use it!
Count your blessings
Gratitude goes a long way to improving our overall mental health, so when you’re having a bad day, it’s even more crucial. Whenever you’re feeling overwhelmed, stop, and write down three things you’re grateful for. Then read them back.
Repeat an affirmation
Need a mini pep talk? Think of a positive manta, like I don’t sweat the small stuff, and repeat this throughout the day — even more so when something annoying happens.
Listen to an upbeat playlist
Music is one of the most powerful mood-boosters there is. If you’re not feeling the day, play one of your favourite upbeat albums, or browse through the Mood playlists on Spotify. You’ll be feeling happier and more motivated in no time.
Treat your gut to some lovin’
At Kreol, we believe a healthy gut equals a healthy mind. We’re not alone either - health and wellness experts all over the world agree with us too. Incorporate a bottle of Kreol into your day and let the millions of good bacteria help you from the inside out.
Walk it out
If you’re stuck inside the house, negative feelings will eventually creep in. As much as you can (while it’s safe) take a few minutes and go for a brisk walk. Even a lap around the block will help to clear the mind.
Cuddle up to your pet
Pets make everything better, and there’s actual research that suggests this is true too. Next time you’re having an off-day, take your pet to the park, or hang out on the couch.
Burn some essential oils
These babies are incredibly powerful when it comes to assisting the body with all sorts of physical and mental ailments. Bergamot, lavender, ylang ylang and peppermint are just a few of our favourite mood-boosting options.
Write down what’s bothering you
If in doubt, write it out! Bottling up your emotions is only going to make matters worse, so grab a piece of paper and get your thoughts out. What’s really annoying you? Once it’s all written down, burn it, and never think of it again.
Nibble on mood-boosting foods
While you probably feel like reaching for another block of chocolate, bag of chips or bottle of wine, this will only fill you with guilt and make you feel worse in the long-run. Instead, munch on brazil nuts, oily fish, bananas or oats, which all have impressive mood-boosting qualities.
Work up a sweat
We might not be able to hit the gym, but did you know 10 minutes is all you need to feel the happiness-inducing benefits of exercise? Schedule in some exercise at your local park, do a short HIIT workout at home, go for a run or skip on the spot, to feel that immediate rush of endorphins.
Humans are simple creatures — sometimes all we need is to treat ourselves. Whether this is buying new activewear, or devouring a good book, figure out what you need right now and give yourself permission to have it. It’s especially important at the moment, when we feel like we should be using every waking minute to be as productive as possible.
Call it a day and have a bath
So you’ve tried all 17 tips and you’re still not having much luck. Could it be time to call it day? Allow yourself to have some serious me-time, by taking a bath, binging on Netflix or hiding under that doona you’ve been dreaming about all day. Just this once won’t hurt.