Ever have ‘one of those days’ where you just feel flat, low , off, and overall just blah?
Everyone struggles with low mood, some more than others, but everyone has their ‘off’ days when you need a little extra to keep you going.
Here are some things you can do right now to help boost your mood:
- Take A Shower
It can be tempting (SO tempting!) to stay in your pj’s all day, stay in bed just a little longer or even roll over and go back to sleep – unwilling to face the day. I genuinely believe there’s a time for day like this!! However, if you are finding ‘those days’ and, the heavy feelings that usually go along with them, pilling up – it might be time to rethink your routine.
Getting out of bed and having a shower is the first step in taking care of you, all of you. It shifts your mood, adds the first movement to your day and acts to honour yourself! Let the warm water wash over you, being mindful that it’s a fresh start and a brand new day. (and you did it, you’re out of bed, easily that hardest part of every day for many!)
- Open the curtains & pull back the blinds
Even on a gloomy grey day, or a rainy cold day there’s light! Invite the day into your space, and while you’re still snug & warm inside, begin to acknowledge and accept the weather outside as well as your response to it. When the sun is shining, it’s easier to smile. A smile sends a message to your brain that you are ok! On a gloomy day, you may need to sit a bit longer by the window (or stand at the back door while your coffee is brewing) to see the beauty of the day; a cardinal floating by, the wind in the trees, snow covered bushes or a squirrel rushing around. Feel your initial response to the day, but find what makes you smile before venturing out. It’s also a nice reminder that the world is big, bigger than you and the feelings that are challenging the start to your day.
- Treat Yourself
It was an afternoon coffee & a box of Smarties for me the other day! Only you know what is going to meet your needs; a pedicure, coffee with a friend, chocolate, a nature walk, a bike ride, shopping… The list is endless because we are all unique. It doesn’t need to be expensive, in fact sometimes it’s fun to keep it simple and feel like you’ve splurged (like a whole box of Smarties, who does that!) It could also be curling up with your journal or a magazine and a cozy blanket, it could be finding a quiet corner to read your book on your lunch break or at a bookstore. It’s about making a moment, just for yourself because today your need a little extra care.
- Make Something
Those who know me well, and travel this motherhood journey with me, know that I ‘feel better’ when there’s homemade granola on my counter and muffins in my freezer. I can’t explain it other than I think it helps me feel ‘on top of things’ to know there are at least a few healthy options for snacks/lunches. It truly makes me smile, and has become a barometer for how I’m managing the busyness of my life. There was a time when making cards brought me the same sense of joy, and I know others who knit or scrapbook or colour – create something, anything. You could sketch, plant flowers, paint, write music – again, the list is only as endless as our individuality. Start small, be proud of yourself for trying and you’ll know when you’ve found your ‘thing!’
- Be Honest & Tell Someone
The goal of all of this is not to ‘pretend’ we are ok, happy & bubbly all the time. Some days are tough! This is about honouring your true self, and that means our messy moods included. If it’s an ‘off’ day for you, let someone you trust know. Take the shame away, be honest and be real. Everyone has days where they struggle to keep going or even keep it together. Your honesty opens the door to conversation and connection. Allowing someone to see you is an incredible gift, to both you and the other person. Honestly lightens the load on your shoulders by lifting some of the weight off your heart and mind, and bringing you back to the moment. Connecting with another person cares for our essence and challenges the internal messaging that often comes with an ‘off’ day. Rather than pulling the covers over your head – you’ve acknowledged your ‘blah’ness’ without letting it define your day!
A Note about Depression: When Low-Mood Is More then the Blahs…
If you are practicing good self-care and lifestyle habits, and still struggling with low mood, reach out and connect to a loved one, trusted friend, or a Therapist. Symptoms of depression can include low mood, changes in eating & sleeping patterns, irritability, cognitive changes (thinking and focus), and body aches and pains. Here is a simple online quiz for to help you assess whether you may be experiencing depression, and a depression checklist & resources.