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5 Ways to Improve Your Mood

November 13, 2012
good mood

Woman listening to Music
As college students, we know that life can get pretty stressful. Between classwork, roommate drama, jobs, and extracurriculars, things aren’t always peachy 100% of the time. But if you’re feeling down in the dumps, have no fear! There are plenty of ways to boost your mood and get you out of that rut in no time.

1. Exercise.
I know that sometimes when you’re tired or just in a bad mood, the last thing you want to do is a bunch of squats and jumping jacks. But exercising can seriously improve your mood. It releases endorphins into your body that make you much more cheerful and happy. Try something low key like yoga if you’re tired and want to relax, or something fun like cardio, if you want to get pumped up.

2. Indulge yourself.
I’m not saying you should go crazy here, but have a piece of chocolate or get a latte from Starbucks. Maybe buy yourself something new -just don’t spend a ton of money, or you’ll just end up having more worries. Sometimes treating yourself is enough to get you out of a rut and back on track in no time.

3. Get some sunlight.
A big problem in the winter months is the lack of sunlight, which can negatively affect your mood. If you’ve been feeling down for a while, try sitting in a patch of sunlight, or get an artificial sun lamp. Sunlight raises the levels of Vitamin D in your system, which triggers hormones that make you feel better, and keeps their levels high. Plus, you’ll feel warm and cozy in the process!

4. Make an upbeat playlist.
I know the new Mumford and Sons album is great, but all those melancholy tunes might be doing more harm than good for your mood! Make a playlist of your favorite upbeat, feel-good songs, and have a little dance party. You’ll feel better in a matter of minutes, plus get some exercise in the process. And when you’re feeling down and it might feel natural to listen to slow, sad songs, crank up that playlist and go about your day. Even if you’re in a setting where you can’t sing or dance along, if you just envision yourself rocking out, chances are you’ll feel a lot happier in no time.

5. Focus on the positive.
So, you overslept, missed your first two classes, the printer wouldn’t let you print your essay, you stepped in a big puddle of slush, and when you got home and just wanted to sleep, your roommate and friends were spread out all over your room. Yeah, in a situation like this, it might be easy to wallow in despair and self-pity about what an awful day you had, but don’t let yourself get in that mindset. Yes, you had a terrible time, but sit down for a moment and think of all the positive things that happened that day, even if they’re as small as the fact that the cafeteria had your favorite kind of pizza for lunch.

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