We see a lot of buzz around the science of ‘being happy’. There are psychologists trying to find the secret key to happiness, meditation exponents teaching several different ways to maintain a steady state of the mind, and many wonderful books being written on the subject of ‘positivity’.
Yet, this state may elude the most positive-minded people for small or large stretches of time – sometimes in a seemingly unreasonable manner. While it is really okay to feel this way sometimes, there are some really quick ways to improve our moods and feel great instantly.
1. Talk to someone
When you are feeling the blues, it almost always helps to talk to someone – even if it is not about what’s eating you at the moment. Just getting out there and being with someone – talking, laughing and being in a different environment can do a great deal to alleviate the pain.
2. Do the act
Gretchen Rubin, in her book “The Happiness Project”, emphasises the need to “act like you want to feel.” Amy Cuddy, a Harvard psychologist recently made waves with her research on how body language affects how we feel. If you want to feel friendly, smile more. If you don’t yourself feeling sloppy, dress smartly. If you are short of confidence for an upcoming interview, follow this 2-minute bathroom routine.
3. Listen to music
Music has the power to influence your mind. Researchers say that music is a hotline to our emotions. Soothing music can influence your heart rate almost instantly.
4. Spend time with kids or pets
Love never fails to heal. When it is unconditional, it can seem like someone poured a magic potion for you. Science says that spending time with loving pets can make a big difference to our moods. As regards children, they are the only people who practice the art of forgiveness very deeply.
This might seem hard, but sometimes the only thing we might need is to put a little distance between ourselves and the issue at hand. Sometimes this can give us a whole new perspective on the problem.
6. Go for a walk
Many geniuses have had their most important breakthroughs while taking long walks. Walking helps you get off your back, get some exercise while soaking in different scenes along the way. There are several attestations to the therapeutic effects of walking.
7. Nap for a bit
I remember a day when I felt like someone had to drag me to even take a tiny step forward. I was exhausted from the moment I woke up and all morning and even the afternoon. And then, I decided to take a short 20-minute nap before I took up my next chore. Believe it or not, I felt so recharged and energetic that I found it hard to believe that I had only dozed off for 20 minutes. Not surprisingly, many others use this trick to be immensely productive.
8. Hug someone
Touch can be a great healer. Humans are wired to have the ability to interpret the touch of another person. Even newborn babies can tell the touch of a stranger from their mother’s. The deep nurturing nature of a tight hug releases happy hormones in the brain, making us feel instantly better.
9. Accomplish something
“Eating that big frog” can leave you feeling satisfied for the rest of the day. Organize your day and utilize the best chunks of your time to accomplish the hardest task for the day. Feeling productive is one of the best rewards the human brain craves for. Keeping a list of the opposite, the not-to-do list is also recommended by experts as a wellness boosting exercise.
When all else fails, there’s always coffee. And wine!