Are you in a funk that just won’t go away? It happens to us all. I’m honestly writing this post for myself, too, to remind myself how to get out of a funk and improve my mood. Lately, I’ve been grumpy, tired, all I want to do is lay around and pout while eating brownies and watching America’s Next Top Model (PSA: all of it is on Hulu right now). However, the real world doesn’t allow for us to do this. At least, not for too long! So, we have to figure out ways to get out of it. Here’s some tried and tested ways that always seem to work for me.
One: Allow Yourself to Feel
If something happened that really got under your skin, allow yourself to really process it. It’s never healthy to shove feelings down and ignore them. Angry? Write it out or vent to a trusted friend! Sad? Let yourself know why, and try to process the feelings. Give yourself some time to get through them. It’s okay to feel; we are all human. If we shove those feelings down, or bottle them up, it almost always leads to trouble down the road.
So, the first step to improve your mood is to really try to identify why you’re feeling this way and what’s causing it. Sometimes, this definitely isn’t as easy as it seems! You may try to process all your feelings and not end up with a reason and that’s totally okay too. Long story short, getting into a funk is okay and nothing to be ashamed of, regardless of reason or lack thereof. Believe that.
A good part of this step is to take as much time as you can to do exactly what you feel like doing (within a healthy reason of course). Feel like doing nothing but sitting on the couch, eating snacks and watching reality TV? Take an evening, if you can, and do just that. Cancel plans if you have to. Self care! However, and this is important, don’t let this step go too long. It’s too easy to fall into a bigger funk by allowing yourself to do this for too long! Trust me–I know.
Two: Choose an Outlet to Improve Mood
Now that you’ve taken the time to allow yourself to feel and to do exactly what you want, it’s time to start turning that funk around. Choose an outlet and start pouring some energy into it. Now, when you’re in one of the moods where you don’t want to do anything, this is sooo much easier said than done. However, working towards something almost always can help improve mood!
So, take as much time as you possibly can to do this. 30 minutes a day? Great! That’s a start. Some examples of outlets include, but are not limited to:
- Cleaning or Home Improvement
Choose one and start pouring as much as you can into it energy-wise. I like to ease into it. For example, my outlet is either reading or writing, so I will start by reminding myself to read or write. I also choose lighter or easier reads, like Well Met. I honestly sometimes have to force myself to just start doing it and say I only have to do it for a short amount of time, like 15 minutes. Typically, I go way past the time I set and feel so much better afterwards!
One thing I’d like to point out is that there are some unhealthy outlets that I really try to stay away from. I used to be guilty of using food, alcohol, or shopping as an emotional crutch. Feeling down? Go shopping! Eat a huge meal that is double your calorie allotment for the day! Drink a bottle of wine! While these help in the moment, they only ever lead to regret, a stomachache, or a headache the next day. There are other unhealthy outlets, too, so use your best judgement. A good question to ask is: “Will this actually help me in the long-term? Or am I using this as a short term band-aid?” And be honest with yourself–your gut is hardly ever wrong here.
Three: Improve Mood by Getting Some Fresh Air
I’m convinced my funks happen more in winter because I honestly don’t go outside as much. I work from home, so I don’t have to leave the house until I’m out of something I need. Even then, we have all of these delivery services nowadays! It’s so easy to order something and wait for it to come to your doorstep.
Well, I can easily connect my bad moods to not leaving the house enough. Remember those plans I told you to cancel when you’re allowing your feelings to process? Well, now it’s time to rein check them. Make some plans and get out of the house. If it’s winter, bundle up and go for a quick walk. If it’s absolutely miserable outside, even just stepping out of the house and taking some deep breaths has helped improve my mood a bit.
I’m one of those people who truly believes we were meant to be outside more as humans, and I try to remind myself of this as I spend most of my time indoors. Every time I can force myself to get outside, I truly feel better for it. The best is if you can visit your local nature center and go on a quiet stroll, but even if you just take your furry friend for a quick walk, that works too!
Four: Do Something for Yourself
Sometimes, we tend to forget about ourselves and do a bunch of things for other people. An easy way to improve mood is to do something just for yourself. No double dipping here! What’s something you’ve been wanting to do lately? Why not do it now?
Okay, so I have to mention here that it has to be within reason. A small treat, if you will. I mean, I’ve been wanting to go to an all-inclusive resort for a long time, but I can’t go tomorrow because I’m in a crappy mood today. Although that would certainly improve my mood!
Also, keep in mind your unhealthy outlets here. I mentioned shopping as an unhealthy one, but it can also be healthy. As an example, I’ve been wanting a new Hydroflask for a couple of months. I use mine every single day, but I’m getting pretty sick of the color I picked out. So, I think I’ll get myself one to help improve my mood. BUT, I’m not going out and spending $500 dollars on clothes I don’t need. Basically, what I’m trying to say is that it’s great to treat yourself, but within reason.
Another great thing about this step is that it’s optional. Only if the steps above don’t work out do you need to try this one–although you truly never need a reason to treat yourself!
An emotional funk happens to us all. It’s how you proceed and get through it that really matters. These steps have always helped me get out of my emotional funk. Of course, this is just my opinion so there are definitely some things that work for me that don’t work for everyone! What are things you do to improve your mood when you’re in a funk?
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