It happens to the best of us. You’re doing your thing, minding your own business, and boom! Bad mood strikes, sometimes for no reasons, sometimes… well you know exactly why.
I haven’t done any researches, but I know from my own experiences that you can get in a bad mood for many reasons. Someone tells you something you don’t like, and you make a big thing out of it, which puts you in a bad mood. Or, you create a scenario in your head, some kind of downward spiral that leads you to feel bad. And then there’s the case where your hormones are just messed up because you either ate junk, or you didn’t sleep properly, or you didn’t move enough, or you’re a woman and you’re having a case of PMS.
In all cases, you feel the bad mood sneaking in your body. If you could see a before and after shot of yourself, you could make a note of all the differences in the way you hold your body when you’re in that bad state. Everyone has their own bad mood body moves, and facial mimics.
How do you get out of there?
While I’m no expert on the subject, I love to read and learn about human behaviours, habits, neurobiology, and all kinds of human related “stuff“. It’s a thrill to make a connection, and get that “Eureka!” moment when solving a puzzle. And then there are patterns that get obvious after a while when you pay attention.
The simplest way I found to snap out of a bad mood is to first notice that I am in a bad mood and acknowledge it. Obvious, but not always easy.
The second thing I do is notice how my body and my face responds to the feeling. If my head is down, and I’m frowning, and at the same time I’m rounding my shoulders, and my breath is short, I know I just have to focus on doing the opposite. In a minute, I can change my state by changing my body and my breathing.
The last thing I need to do is let go. I find that by saying the words in my head a few times, the remaining bad mood goes away. I am now ready to talk calmly if someone told me something I didn’t feel was appropriate, or I can go by my day knowing it’s going to be an awesome one.
This strategy never fails, and I use it every time I want to change the state I’m in.
What do you do to change your mood, cheer up, and feel better?