Since having my twins 5 months ago I have had bouts of baby blues here and there.
There are times when I just feel overwhelmed or tired or sad or stressed. Some days I just don’t feel like myself, I can’t focus on work, and I sink into the negativity trap.
Sometimes it is so hard to snap out of it, but I am getting better at it because I now know what strategies work for me.
Step One: Recognize you’re in a crappy mood
You can’t get yourself out of a bad mood unless you realize you are in one. If you notice any of the following you may be letting negative rule your mood.
- Has a friend or family member asked you “what’s wrong?”
- Do you find yourself with a short fuse… upset over things that don’t normally bother you?
- Are you snapping at your loved ones?
- Have you been smiling less that usual?
- Do you find that you are more negative than usual?
Step 2: Tell yourself you are going to take control of your emotions and mood
Sometimes it is really hard for me to take action when I know I am in a bad mood. Part of that negative mindset is to wallow in it. You have to take control!
- Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Breathe in through your nose slowly and then slowly out through your mouth with pursed lips. Repeat this several times. This will relax you and you will be more open to mood changes.
- Choose a positive affirmation such as “I am a beautiful strong women and I deserve to be happy”. Repeat this affirmation several times with authority!
- Lastly, make the decision to do something positive to boost your mood.
Step 3: Snap out of it!
You should choose one or more positive activities that will lift your spirits. Here are several ideas:
- Get Outside – This is my go-to when I am in a crummy mood. A nice strong dose of vitamin D always refreshes my spirit. Go for a walk, do some gardening, kick the ball around with your kids, have a picnic, or just sit out in the sun with a nice cold glass of lemonade and listen to the birds chirp.
- Accomplish a task – Is there something weighing on your mind that you needs to be done? Go ahead and get it done (even if you don’t feel like it) or tick a few things off the to-do list. This will take some weight off of your shoulders and then you will be more likely to relax. A sense of accomplishment is a great mood booster!
- Do something creative – Having a creative outlet can do wonders for a bad mood. Break out the paint brushes, pottery wheel, or crocheting needles. Whatever your creative outlet is use it! Even if you feel like you aren’t creative by nature there are still things you can do. Try some low stress creative projects like rock painting or coloring in an adult coloring book
- Do something with your kids – Nothing will lift your spirits like spending time with cute little humans who adore you. Go to the park, the library, get ice cream, or just go out back and run around. Let your kids remind you how to let go of everyday stress and just have fun.
- Call a positive friend – Talking with a friend can definitely lift your spirits, but it can also drag you down more if you aren’t careful. Be sure to call a friend that you know will be positive and up-lifting.
- Do something nice for someone else – Almost anyone would attest to the fact that doing something for someone else will naturally boost your mood. Pay it forward in line at the store or a drive through, bring a family in need dinner, or do a random act of kindness.
- Volunteer – This has the same effect as doing something nice for someone. There are a lot of options to get out and volunteer. Not only will it lift your spirits, but you might inadvertently find a new passion!
- Give someone a genuine compliment – It feels really good to lift another person up. Giving someone a compliment will boost your own self confidence and self esteem which will in turn boost your mood! It’s actually quite amazing how this works.
- Get your heart pumping – Physical exercise releases natural endorphins and gives your body a natural high. Go for a walk, hit the gym, take a fitness class, go for a bike ride, swimming, hiking, play catch with your kids… the possibilities are endless! This important thing is to get moving!
- Dance party in your living room – Put on some uplifting music and dance! It’ll get your heart pumping and good tunes are bound to put you in a better mood. It’s a bonus if your kids join in!
- Get you hair done, a manicure, or a pedicure – You don’t have to drop a ton of cash to pamper yourself. Get a simple wash and blow dry or your nails filed and painted. It feels good to be pampered and sometimes all we need is a little me time. You will leave feeling pretty, relaxed, and in a much better mood.
- Watch a funny show, movie, or listen to stand up comedy – It’s no secret that laughter can quickly lift your spirits. Watch or listen to something that will make you laugh; you will feel so much better afterwards.
I still battle bad moods because sometimes it is tough being a busy mom! We have so much on our plates and it can be easy to let one misstep during the day linger on and turn us into a mom grouch.
These days I try and stay aware of my mood. I give myself little self-assessments and when I notice my mood shifting I try a few positive affirmations and then do some mood boosting activities until I snap out of it!