Life is full of ups and downs, and the craziness of it all can easily put you in a funk at times. Most people assume their bad mood is directly correlated to whatever situation just happened to them. Let’s say for example that your significant other unloads the dishwasher and you yell at them for unloading it wrong. It is most likely that your anger has nothing to do with the actual dishes, but something underlying that you are struggling with. Maybe you are really upset that your best friend said something hurtful and this is the easiest way to vent. I remember I used to be very in the moment when I got upset. I did not stop and process what was really going on and what I was really feeling, I simply felt mad about the situation in front of me. I do not remember what happened to change my outlook, but over time I began coping in a much healthier way when I was in a bad mood. I realized when I took the time to really figure out what I was upset about, and this meant peeling away several layers, I could get to the root of the issue and resolve it much better. It took away the superficial emotions and behaviors that never worked. Do you ever feel like you are upset about something so trivial and part of you knows it has nothing to do with what you are upset about? Instead of just reacting, take a more proactive approach. If you want to create long-term positive changes, it is a matter of being more aware. Being aware of your behaviors. Being aware of your triggers to bad moods. Being more aware of how you react. Awareness will change your life. This week try to take a step back when you are feeling upset about something. Then follow the steps below to improve your outcome.
ACTION TIPS FOR THE WEEK:
1. What is really bugging you?
When you get upset about something, stop and take a breath. What is really upsetting you? Keep asking yourself questions until you get to the real answer. Review your day. Think about what recently happened to trigger your feelings. Then dig a little deeper. Try to determine what is really causing you to feel upset or mad.
2. Focus on breathing and quiet surroundings
If you want to instantly improve a bad mood, there are two things that are guaranteed to change your feelings. Take a minute to take 5-10 deep breaths. This literally calms you down on a physical level. It will take you out of the moment. I would also advise leaving the environment you are in that is causing you to feel stress. Go someplace quiet and calming. Take in this energy and you will feel better equipped to deal with your situation.
3. Create a strategy
Once you have determined the cause of your bad mood and removed yourself from the situation, it is time to be proactive. Talk with a friend, therapist or coach to help you problem solve. Then come up with a list of ideas to address the issue and move you forward in your life. You will feel empowered and in control of your outcome. Instead of simply sulking, come up with solutions that will improve your mood.