1. Morning Journaling Routine
Let’s talk a little bit about morning routines. This is one of those trending topics that people think are just popular right now and will be gone before we know it, but that isn’t true at all.
You have a morning routine now, whether you consciously realize it or not. You probably have certain tasks you like to get done shortly after waking up, such as brushing your teeth, taking a shower, walking your dogs, making your kids breakfast, or stumbling out of bed and rushing out the door to get to work.
We are not trying to invent the wheel with your morning routine, but instead just add a few activities in your morning that will improve your day and your mood.
One of the best activities you can do during your morning routine is to write in a journal. There are many ways this can help you, but one of our personal favorites is with a brain dump.
What is a brain dump?
This simply means you write whatever is on your mind, and keep writing until you feel like you have gotten through all those nagging thoughts. Your mood fluctuations might be from stress or just feeling overwhelmed. Your thoughts can do that without you even realizing it.
By doing this type of brain dump in the morning, you get those thoughts out on paper to help release some of the tension, but also gain a little more clarity.
2. Improve Your Sleep Hygiene
The next most important thing you can do each day when you want to boost your mood naturally is to get better sleep. And we aren’t just talking about how many hours you sleep, though that is definitely important.
You want to focus on proper sleep hygiene, which is simply the nighttime routine you have before you go to sleep.
Here are some things you can add to your sleep routine that will help you get more restful sleep, and balance your mood at the same time:
-Start getting ready for bed 1-2 hours before you intend to fall asleep.
-Don’t use any electronics or keep the TV on when you are getting ready for sleep.
-Try to avoid stimulants like caffeine or alcohol shortly before sleep.
-Set up your bedroom to provide a restful night’s sleep, including a cool and quiet environment.
-Get blackout curtains to keep it as dark as possible in your bedroom.
-Participate in quiet and calm activities before bed, such as reading or writing in your journal.
With these few changes, you will notice that you tend to fall asleep a little easier, and you don’t wake up exhausted and cranky.
3. Pay Attention to What You Eat
This might not be what you want to hear, but what you eat does make a difference in how you feel, including mentally. Some foods, like high amounts of sugar and refined carbohydrates, give you energy and make you feel better in the short-term, but cause an energy crash, after which you might notice a worse mood.
When it comes to eating right, you want to focus on balance and proper nutrients. Not being on a restrictive diet, but just trying to get in more complex carbs, whole grains, fruits and vegetables, and lean protein.
4. Move Your Body Every Day
In addition to eating right, try to also get some regular exercise in. Again, we aren’t talking about completing a difficult fitness challenge or pushing yourself to do some extreme form of activity you don’t enjoy.
Instead, find some workouts that get you moving, you are motivated and excited to try, and that you actually enjoy. These can help you become mentally healthier and improve your mood exponentially, with the added benefit of being good for your physical health as well.
Some exercises you might want to try include are:
-Walking or going on a hike
-Taking a local fitness class
-Yoga or Pilates
-Family workouts with your kids
5. Practice Gratitude
When you appreciate the blessings in your life, instead of focusing on what you don’t have, your mood will change practically overnight. No matter how difficult or challenging things might feel right now, there are always things to be grateful for. It might be people in your life who are always loving and supportive, a decent job, a roof over your head, your pets or family, or just your cup of coffee every morning when you have 5 minutes of peace and quiet.
To improve your mood every day, start writing 5-10 things you are grateful for in your journal. Turn this into a daily ritual that you do every morning or evening, and you will notice the changes very quickly.
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