Your mood can affect thoughts, actions, social interactions, and general wellbeing. Get ready to learn 10 small changes that can improve your mood naturally, so you can concentrate on living your best life.
Your Mood Matters
Picture yourself last time you were in a “bad mood.” Maybe you were sulking and withdrawn, or angry and reactive. Perhaps you felt on edge, overly worried, too sensitive, or tired. Sometimes, a bad mood can look like all of the above.
Now picture yourself in a “good mood.” What changes? Chances are that you’re instantly lighter, friendlier, and happier. You likely associate good moods with feelings of joy and love, or memories filled with laughter and ease.
There’s no other way to say it: our mood matters. Our mood dictates what kind of day we’re going to have. Then our days determine our weeks, our weeks create our months, the months turn into years and, before you know it, your mood sets the tone for your life. So ask yourself: how often are you in control of which mood you’re in?
If you struggle to balance your moods and constantly experience one extreme mood after the other, don’t panic. You’re not alone. So many of us can let our bad moods take over the driver’s seat at times. Luckily, there are many proven behaviors, daily habits, and routines that can help naturally improve mood and, ultimately, your life.
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Causes of Low Mood
So what puts us in a bad mood to begin with? Traffic, meetings, crappy weather. So many of the things that put us in a bad mood are seemingly out of our control. But once you understand the deeper, underlying emotions that are dictating your mood changes, the easier it will be to control how you react to those external situations.
It’s important to first determine which overall factors are causing your low moods. Once you know where the low moods are coming from, you can start to make personal lifestyle changes that will best help to boost your mood.
Poor sleeping habits: We’re talking about more than just tossing and turning on one sleepless night (although that can definitely flip your mood the next day). A consistently poor sleep schedule is a leading cause of chronic low moods.
Poor diet: We’ve all heard it before — you are what you eat. It’s true that the more you opt for junk food or nutrient-lacking meals, the more your mood will feel like, well, junk.
High stress levels: One of the most common facts that impacts mood is emotional and physical stress. It only takes mild, seemingly harmless levels of stress to turn your mood sour.
Mental struggles: Many mental health disorders such as anxiety and depression can lead to drastically low shifts in your mood.
Physical problems: From hormone fluctuations and vitamin deficiencies to strokes and thyroid disorders, struggling with your physical health can have a negative impact on your daily mood.
10 Ways To Boost Your Mood Naturally
You do not have to continue feeling like a victim to your fluctuating moods. By adopting the following lifestyle habits, you can build a daily routine that will greatly improve your mood and make you a happier, healthier “you” every day.
1. Practice proper sleep hygiene
A solid sleep schedule is one of the most important aspects of a mood-boosting routine. Healthy sleep hygiene starts with creating a consistent nighttime ritual to wind you down and guarantee a good night’s rest.
Try getting ready for bed 1-2 hours before you plan to fall asleep. In that time, turn off all electronics and avoid any stimulants like coffee or alcohol. Create a calm and cool environment in your bedroom, where you can retreat to read before bed. When it comes time to snooze, try using blackout curtains to minimize light and a meditation or sleep sound app to help lull you to sleep.
2. Create a calm morning routine
You already have a morning routine, even if you don’t realize it. Think about the tasks you get done right after you wake up. Do you brush your teeth, take a shower, and make the kids breakfast? Maybe you scroll on your phone, roll out of bed, and stumble out the door. Take some time to reflect and decide if your morning routine is one that’s built to boost mood.
If it’s not, try choosing a few relaxing activities you can enjoy first thing in the morning to create a calm and steady atmosphere for your day. Stay in your PJs and stretch on the floor before rushing out the door. Start to sip your coffee at the kitchen table, instead of in the car. Rather than grabbing your phone first thing, try writing in a journal. Don’t know what to write? Try using journal prompts.
3. Find a way to move every day
Movement doesn’t have to be a strict and intimidating fitness routine that puts you out of your element. Instead, try to find the kind of movement you enjoy. By finding a fun and enjoyable exercise routine, you’ll actually look forward to some heart-pumping, mood-boosting fun.
If the gym was never your thing, try one of these alternatives: Go for a walk or take a hike. Put on your favorite music and dance. Take a local fitness class and try something new, like yoga or pilates. Organize some family-fun workouts with your kids.
4. Include more nutrients in your diet
What you eat truly does make a difference in how you feel. High-sugar foods and refined carbohydrates are tempting and certainly taste great in the moment, but they’ll lead to an energy crash and leave you feeling depleted. But don’t worry! Eating to improve your mood doesn’t need to include a strict diet.
Simply try to focus on including proper nutrients in your daily meals. This means opting for more lean proteins, fruits and vegetables, complex carbs, and whole grains. With new products like vegetable-based pastas and cauliflower-crust pizzas, it’s easy to indulge in your favorites while packing in the protein.
5. Socialize with your loved ones
Humans are social creatures; we thrive when we feel connection and belonging. Sure, we need alone time, too, but sitting down for some quality face-to-face time with close friends and family is a guaranteed way to improve your mood. In fact, studies show that socializing releases ‘happy hormones’ in your brain, making it a scientific fact that connection naturally improves mood.
Try inviting family over for game night, or meeting up with a friend for coffee. If distance is an issue, give them a FaceTime call or hop on Zoom. Socializing doesn’t always have to be a big production, though. Having small interactions with strangers every day, like thanking your barista or smiling at your neighbor, can be a sure way to boost mood, too.
6. Do something just for you
We’ve all heard the big buzzword lately: self-care. You might brush it off as something you don’t have time for, but the importance of self-care really can’t be overstated. Self-care is making it a priority to do something just for you, and just because you enjoy it.
There are endless ways to bring yourself joy, but here are a few suggestions if you’re giving it a first go: Get a manicure or pedicure. Do a facemask. Watch your favorite TV show or movie, or read a new book. Work on an art project like a vision board or a collage. Take a nap, enjoy a bath, invite a friend for coffee. Yes, self-care can be social, too! It’s really about anything that will boost your mood.
7. Declutter and get organized
Have you ever come home to a clean and organized house and just felt rejuvenated? What about the opposite? Yikes. Keeping a neat and orderly space has real physical benefits when it comes to our feelings of stability and calmness. Spending every day in a clean, clutter-free home will certainly improve your mood.
Try cleaning or tidying small sections of the house every day, even on busy days. Making it a habit to regularly pick up after yourself will naturally improve mood, benefit the whole family, and make you feel more at home. Once you’re decluttered and organized, try sprucing up your space with some house plants or new decor.
8. Unplug every day
Texting, emails, Facebook, Instagram. Sometimes it’s all just a bit too much. With social media and phone screens there are so many distractions that we don’t know where to put our attention, so we end up jumbled and overwhelmed.
Give yourself some scheduled “unplugged” time without screens every day. This means no phone, no laptop, no TV. Start out with ten minutes, then try fifteen the next day. See if you can continue raising the bar until you spend an entire hour without screens each day. Think of all the other things you can fill that time with instead.
9. Get outside
One thing you can do instead of staring at a screen is head outdoors for some fresh air and vitamin D. There is nothing like stepping outside to naturally improve mood, boost energy levels, and bring you a sense of peace.
If you live close enough to ride your bike to work, that can be a great way of getting fresh air and movement every day. Otherwise, try going for a short walk or bike ride around your neighborhood to get the mood-boost juices flowing. Gardening, picnics, and hiking are some other favorite ways to enjoy the outdoors.
10. Practice gratitude
When we make an effort to reflect and feel grateful for all that we have, we automatically feel a mood boost. Commit yourself to take on the attitude of gratitude, and take note of how it improves your mood.
Try keeping a list of three things you are grateful for every single day. Each day, try to list something you haven’t before. You’ll be surprised by how grateful you start to feel, even for the littlest things. You can start by feeling grateful for all these wonderful new mood-boosting routine tips.
I hope you have found these natural mood boosting tips to be helpful and effective. Please leave a comment below if you have other suggestions for improving your mood.
Be sure to check out some of our mindset posts:
Tools & Resources
Calm Your Mind Workbook
A printable workbook that assists in decluttering your life and acquiring calming spaces. Learn to create habits and routines that quiet the mind and turn off stress and anxiety.
Positive Mindset Toolkit
This is a huge collection of printable tools that will help to improve a negative mindset with exercises focused on positive thoughts, a growth mindset, and by eliminating limiting beliefs.