DO NOT GET COUGHT UP WITH NEGATIVE THINKING
We all know life isn’t actually like the glossy photos you see on Instagram and Facebook every day. People are only posting their best, most perfect selves—and things are always more messy than that. It’s perfectly normal to feel stress and unhappiness sometimes. But if you notice it happening more and more often, it may be time to re-evaluate and hit the reset button. These quick tips can help you bust out of a rut next time you’re feeling down.
1. Change your bedtime.
There’s nothing more important than getting enough sleep. It’s critical for our brains. Sleep is great for the brain because it allows for the things you learned that day to be turned into memories. If you’re not able to give your brain time to fully process the actions of the day, how can you make proper decisions for next time, or even recall necessary information during family gatherings or work meetings? Sleep studies have shown that those who only get a minimal amount of sleep per night exhibit decreases in cognition and overall performance.”
2. Sweat it out.
Numerous studies have shown that exercise has a pretty significant mood-enhancing effect, so you know it’s a good idea to get your sweat on when you’re feeling down in the dumps. Our bodies and minds are closely linked. When we move through different types of activities like exercise, it can lead to huge physiological and psychological changes. A healthy body leads to a healthy mind, and vice versa.
3. Drink water all day.
Forget to down a glass when you woke up this morning? Time to grab one—stat. According to a study from the University of Connecticut’s Human Performance Laboratory, even mild dehydration can alter a persons’ mood, energy, and ability to think clearly. What exactly is “mild” dehydration, though? The researchers behind the study defined it as an approximate 1.5 percent loss in normal water volume in the body. But since you can’t exactly measure that while you’re going about your day it’s important that you remember to drink throughout the day—don’t wait until you’re thirsty. Feeling thirsty means you’re already dehydrated. Starting your day with hot water and the juice of one lemon, as the hot water wakes up your digestive tract and the lemon helps your liver and flushes out toxins.
4. Take a social media break.
Let’s be honest: Social media can lead to serious FOMO, and that has the ability to crumble one’s self-esteem and cause unnecessary sadness and jealousy. Science proves it, too: One recent study from the University of Pittsburgh found that the greater the reliance on social media, the greater the chances of becoming depressed. If you need to, delete your social apps, or at the very least make it a point not to check them as soon as you wake up. “You want to make sure you are giving as much effort to real life and real life conversations as you are on social media.
6. Get outside.
Green is good for you, as researchers found in a series of field studies conducted at the Human-Environment Research Lab. Not only does nature have the ability to soothe and heal us mentally, but it also allows us to get out of our own heads and connect to something bigger than ourselves. In fact, research in the past decade has shown that being in nature increases creativity, improves problem-solving skills, helps short-term memory, and reduces acute stress. You don’t have to go for a 12-mile hike or run a marathon—a quiet walk outside or a nap by the pool can help you calm down and hit the reset button.
7. Start a gratitude journal.
It’s all about remembering the little things in life. Giving thanks can actually make you happier, especially when you get into the habit of writing in a gratitude journal. According to the study authors, “With gratitude, people acknowledge the goodness in their lives. In the process, people usually recognise that the source of that goodness lies at least partially outside themselves. It provides an outlet for emotional release, while also setting up an intentional moment to step outside of the chaos that’s involved in everyday life and notice the positives.