Feeling a bit down? 3 small changes to help get you out of a slump
It has been a very strange/different/intense/overwhelming couple of months.
And much as I am feeling gratitude for the fact that I am healthy, my children are healthy, and my family are healthy – I am also feeling a little numb.
It has been a lot to take in. It has been lonely and strange and overwhelming and just really, really strange. And it's not over – I still don't know when I can travel to Norway to see my family again. I still don't know when I will be able to work in my office again. I still don't know how we will get through these next few weeks and months.
I mean; I know we will get through them. I just struggle at times to think about how everything will look when we do. But right now, more so than ever, it is important to try and look at the bright side. Muster up some excitement and happiness about the future. Or, in the words of Dr. Seuss himself, 'unslumping ourselves.'
However, the thing is – happiness is so very often a mindset. Feeling a little bit down? Guess what – that is something we can actively do something about. The best bit? It isn't hard to help yourself look at things a little more brightly and add some positivity to your day.
Start with these three, and I can pretty much guarantee you'll feel happier in no time:
1. Declutter Your House
If you haven't been watching the Netflix show "Tidying Up with Marie Kondo" you really should start. It will inspire you to get stuck into getting your house in order – every square inch.
Why is everyone so obsessed? Because it’s true what they say if you’re home is cluttered, then so is your mind. Trust me. I’m in the process of both watching the show and decluttering my house right now, and it’s addicting and so, so satisfying to my soul.
2. Add some mood-boosting foods to your diet
Yes, you should eat for your physical health, but did you know food can also play a huge part in your mood and feelings too? It's true. In fact, a growing body of research shows that the nutrients (or lack thereof) we consume have a major effect on our emotions. What this means: the foods we choose to eat when we’re feeling stressed, tired, anxious, or depressed can either help pick us up, or keep dragging us down.
So what foods should you be adding to your diet when you are feeling a little blue?
First things first: Don't skip breakfast – by doing so, you are only allowing your blood sugar to dip really low, making you more likely to feeling down and lethargic as well, and more prone to snacking on something sugary. Fill yourself up with healthy choices like eggs, oatmeal and some good fats, like a handful of nuts or an avocado.
Try sipping green tea throughout the day, as research has shown it helps calm us and can ease feelings of anxiety.
Other great foods to eat to beat the blues is wild salmon (load up on those Omega 3s), blueberries, as the flavonoids, in these berries help regulate mood, improve memory, and protect the brain from ageing, and leafy greens (spinach, Swiss chard etc.), as these are chock-a-block with magnesium, a mineral that’s essential for increasing your energy levels and well-known for its mood-boosting abilities.
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3. Do a digital detox
We all know it – we are spending far too much time on our devices these days – and experts say it is having a terrible effect on our moods, minds and especially our human connections.
One of the things all the mindless scrolling does to us is make us vulnerable to the 'comparison game' – you know, the one where we look at all the gorgeous, glossy (highly edited) images in our feed and compare our own homes and holidays and lives to this (often very fake) reality – resulting in negative feelings and a sense that our own lives don't measure up.
How to make it stop? Unfollow any social media accounts that make you feel bad about your own life. Start practising gratitude, and, most importantly, tune out. Log off. Disconnect. Put your phone away more, do it often. And instead, go do something that actually feeds your soul. You will notice the difference not just in your own mood, but in your family's too.
(Feature image via Sezane.com)