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3 Simple Tricks to INSTANTLY Improve Your Mood

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I’ve shared before that I am a pessimist by nature. It usually takes a great deal of diligence and effort for me to maintain a positive outlook since I default to doomsday scenarios and self-doubt.

That’s not the type of person I like to be around so I am always looking for ways to avoid being that type of person. Recently, I’ve been trying out some new strategies that I have picked up from others and a few of them have been so remarkably successful for me, I thought I would share them in the hopes other people will have the same success with them.

a lady with both thumbs up standing against a wall with exclamation marks drawn on it after she tried 3 Simple Tricks to Instantly Improve Your Mood

1. Smile

I know you have heard this advice before but the reason it is so widely shared is that it truly is effective! Smiling triggers the release of endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine. These feel-good transmitters are proven to be bona fide mood lifters.

Better yet, because of the way our cingulate cortex works, people are biologically programmed to mimic a smile meaning that smiling really is contagious. When you smile, you not only improve your mood, but the moods of those around you, increasing the chances of maintaining a positive attitude longer.

2. Make a Mental Thankful List

I attended a church service at a friend’s church for her daughter’s baptism. The preacher’s message that day was to spend the first 10 minutes of each day making a mental list of all the things for which you are thankful.

He claimed that in starting your day this way, it would change your outlook and perspective for the rest of the day in such a way that you would continue to feel thankful and be less irritated by obstacles and inconveniences. Frankly, I thought it sounded like some religious mumbo jumbo to me, but I figured it couldn’t hurt to try and no one was more shocked than me when I discovered it really works!

Because I’m always eager to start my day, I have been horrible about devoting an entire 10 minutes at the start of the day. Instead, before I get out of bed, I make a mental list of 10 things I am thankful for. If, during the day, I feel myself slipping into a negative frame of mind, I pause and try to come up with 5 things for which I am thankful. This simple redirection always improves my mood.

3. Make a Silent Wish or Say a Silent Prayer for a Difficult Person

My husband is a cool cucumber. He can deal with difficult people with so much patience and control, that I am often in awe of his ability.

One day when I knew I was going to have spend a significant amount of time with someone that I have a hard time getting along with, I asked him for some pointers. He told me that when this person said something that when I started to get irritated with her, I should instead try to identify the motivation behind her words.

If they were hurtful and I believed the intent was to hurt me or make me feel bad about myself, I should realize that it was because she was unhappy herself and take pity on her. Then, I should say a silent prayer for her to find happiness.

I don’t think I have ever rolled my eyes as far back in my head as when he finished explaining this piece of advice to me. He had to be kidding, right? He wasn’t.

Since I couldn’t avoid seeing her, and since my usual reaction to her was to silently steam about her unkind remarks and then stew about them for days making myself and those around me pretty miserable in the process, I thought it might be worth it to try my husband’s approach even though it sounded absolutely ludicrous to me.

I’m pretty sure I did it wrong (at least not how my husband intended), but it worked nonetheless. When she started in with her verbal attack, I retreated into my mind picturing how horrible her home life must be.

In my mind, she was wishing she could find a way to improve it and be happy so she could stop her campaign to make everyone else miserable. I did, indeed, pity her which somehow made me feel superior to her (which I’m pretty sure was not what my husband was encouraging) but it did make me feel better while sitting with her.

If you find yourself feeling sad, angry, frustrated, worried, or anxious, I hope you’ll consider trying at least one of these strategies. I know they work and they work immediately. If you do try them, I hope you come back and let me know how well they work for you. If you have additional tips, I’d love for you to share them in the comments below.

9 thoughts on “3 Simple Tricks to INSTANTLY Improve Your Mood”

  1. Great post…thank you for sharing 🙂
    I found you on Mostlyblogging.com and I stumbled you 🙂

  2. Stopped by from Mostly Blogging’s stumbleupon group.

    I love that you suggest to stop and wish or pray for a difficult person. This is great advice to keep your day positive and mood good!


  3. I love this post. I start out each day thinking of what I am thankful for – I make a note of things as they happen during the day so I don’t forget. Sometimes it is the little things that I read about at the end of the day that are the ones that mean the most to me. I think you are lucky to have a husband who is cool as a cucumber!

  4. Your number 2 tip is my favorite. I also use it at night if I have difficulty falling to sleep. I go through a list of things that I’m thankful for and it relaxes me so that I can fall asleep.

  5. I love these ideas. I keep meaning to do something along the lines of #2, and I think I really need to do it. Maybe if I can incorporate it into my planner, that would help. But I guess I need to come up with new things every day, or I would just be reciting a litany. I should definitely be working on #3!

    • #2 works remarkably well if you can make yourself do it. Honestly, #3 is the toughest for me but is the only way I have found to squelch the anger that I feel when dealing with difficult people. Good luck!

  6. UGH… a certain person kept coming up in my mind while reading this, and I will surely try one of these… probably the last one, since I can stop listening when she blabs and retreat into a silent prayer of patience for me, and a slight change in her homelife, so she slowly stops bugging the heck out of me!!

  7. Aaaah. Thank you for sending some sunshine my way. I’ve been having a lot of bad days this month and it’s like one after the other. Thank you, thank you for this. Nos 2 and 3 are right on, as if you wrote them for me.

    • Your comment made me so happy! I am glad you found the article worthwhile and I do hope it truly helped brighten your day because you have certainly brightened mine. 🙂


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