7 Ways to Uplift Your Mood

By Eric Perry, PhD-c

Audio version | Click here

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.” ~Albert Einstein

We all have bad days. Have you ever had the kind of day that makes you think, “What is it all about?” We might start questioning our jobs and even our lives. Pretty soon we find ourselves spiraling into sadness. It is important not to get stuck in a whirlpool of negativity. Always keep moving forward because tomorrow will be a better day.

Here are 7 ways to uplift your mood:

1. Acknowledge your feelings
Start by asking yourself on a scale of one to ten how bad do you feel? Accept where you are emotionally. Don’t resist how you are feeling. Denying your feelings only keeps you in the current mental state. It might even make it worse. Think of denial as a dam that disrupts the flow of a river. In order to process how you feel you must remove the mental dam before you can move forward.

2. Don’t catastrophize
When we feel like we have done something wrong we may begin to imagine the worst possible outcome.  For example, perceived rudeness by your employer can easily be catastophized into thinking you are about to be fired. Take a moment to reframe your thinking. Acknowledge that perhaps your boss is having a bad day and his or her actions are not personally directed at you. Stay in the moment and don’t let your happiness be sabotaged by a need to predict the future.

3. Stop ruminating
It is important to avoid replaying negative images or scripts in your mind. It is pointless to keep telling yourself you should have acted differently or you shouldn’t have said this or that. You can not travel back in time to change the past so why dwell on what cannot be changed? Accept the day as it occurred and remember that you did your best. And, no matter what anyone says, your best is ALWAYS good enough. Again, stay in the moment. Life is full of lessons. Don’t beat yourself up over perceived missteps. Learn from your mistakes and move on.

4. Reach out to others
Don’t isolate yourself after a bad day. When we are having a tough time, we might want to close off and avoid people. It is important to know the difference between healthy alone time and complete isolation. Talk to someone that cares about you. It helps to get someone else’s point of view. By sharing with others what you are going through you can be reminded that you are not alone.

5. Make a list of what makes you happy
Take a moment and write down 5 things that make you happy. As you make the list, visualize the happiness you feel when you experience the things you are listing. You will be surprised how much better you feel when you get to the bottom of the list. If you decide to do this please feel free to share your list in the comments section below!

6. Treat yourself
After a hard day it is important to be kind to yourself. Treat yourself to something nice. This does not mean to go buy yourself some new material possession. Self-kindness can take many forms. It can be a long hot bath or a long walk. Do something nice for yourself!

7. Let’s hear from you
What would you like to add to this list? It is always nice to hear thoughts and reflections from my dear readers!

If you found this post to be helpful or interesting please remember to like, comment and share.

Best wishes,

Specializing in a solution focused and results driven approach to psychotherapy


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141 responses to 7 Ways to Uplift Your Mood

  1. Nina says:

    I would like to add getting enough sleep. Sometimes, we are more likely to feel irritable and we get tired easily when we don’t get good sleep. I always feel more positive and energized when I get 7-8 hours of sleep. ☺

    Liked by 8 people

  2. Ochman says:

    I particularly love the ‘reach out to others tip’. I however practice reaching out to others who need to be reached out to. By so doing, I realise that I am not alone in my situation and I feel better that someone has been blessed by my reaching out to them,

    Liked by 9 people

  3. Hello Eric. Great post. I struggle with number 3! I go over and over things in my head, if I feel I have made a wrong decision or have upset someone. I am a believer in that our feelings are never wrong or right -they are part of us…we feel what we feel because it’s natural – It is how we manage these feelings that counts…It’s just sometimes difficult to manage them in a way want to! I like the last line of number 3: Learn from your mistakes and move on.
    Very refreshing post. Thanks for sharing 🙂 Carly

    Liked by 5 people

  4. templekitty says:

    Number 3 is a big one for me. I actually did number 5 a few weeks ago and ended up creating a self-care box with things in that make me happy or smile looking through or engaging with them.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. poet1999 says:

    I will like number 5 with the list of things that make me happy 🙂
    1. Writing
    2. Talking to people that I love
    3. Spending time in prayer/Bible reading
    4. Working out
    5. Lying down doing absolutely nothing (it relaxes me)

    Liked by 7 people

  6. I do a BODYCOMBAT workout class and punch out all negative feelings. Exercise in general always does the trick for me. It’s just a matter of actually making it to the gym. But once I am there, my mood always gets better.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. boomergirl47 says:

    It’s important for me not to run away from the feeling. Observing it helps me not to get sucked in. I’m not the emotion, I’m just experiencing it. All 7 tips were excellent. The worse thing to do is kick yourself when you’re already down. Exercise helps too. Gets me out of my head.

    Liked by 4 people

  8. This field was intentionally left blank says:

    Thank you! I needed this today 👏🏼👏🏼😊
    ~The Silent Wave Blog writer/Laina 🌟🌟

    Liked by 2 people

  9. This post came just in time! Corporate life has had me down and it’s tough to stay focused on the happy sometimes. I’m a fan of writing and listening to some great, mellow music to uplift my spirits.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Ally says:

    A workout never fails to lift my mood. There’s something satisfying about lifting heavy things and the endorphins are a plus 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Indeed. But sometimes it’s hard to fight with mind. I myself try to involve in more works, creativity and try to do exercise. I found myself when i am best in routine every day –
    Jobs done
    And healthy foods. But continue keeping balance or following as per schedule is tough job.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Chrysolyte says:

    I want to Thank You. Today this is exactly what I needed. The confirmation of what I do that’s not beneficial to my progress. Ruminator, Isolation and making a List of things that make me Happy!!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • MakeItUltra™ says:

      I am so glad it helped and thank you for your comment! Have a great weekend and start your list😀✨✨✨✨

      Liked by 1 person

  13. In this world we live in we need all the help we can get to lift out mood . Great tips One thing I like to do is just remember if I have a bad day I know there is someone else that is having a worse one, so count your blessings because it could always be worse.

    Liked by 3 people

    • MakeItUltra™ says:

      Very true! Thank you so much for reading and for your comment! Have a great weekend ✨

      Liked by 2 people

  14. Thank you! I really appreciate how you make it easy to follow and utilize the steps you’ve found helpful in uplifting and Self-awareness ❤ . It's refreshing.

    I particularly like your tip on stopping ruminating – that one really helps me, and it's a continual practice. A few other things that help me to uplift my mood:
    Exercise (especially running)
    Breathing – even just 3 deep breaths
    Having a good laugh.

    Thanks again, and many blessings to you,

    Liked by 3 people

  15. KJ Smith says:

    Number 3 – Great point! And Number 5 – my list of Smiles is always growing! Thank you for this post.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. This is probably off topic but related, how do you overcome panic attacks? I’ve always had to hold onto another human being, physical contact a baited the attack quicker. What other solutions do you suggest?

    Liked by 2 people

    • MakeItUltra™ says:

      There are many approaches to panic attacks such as deep breathing, counting your breath or describing shapes and colors that are visible in your immediate area. All of these are intended to bring the mind back to the frontal lobe (the solution center of the brain) and away from the amygdala (the fight or flight center). I believe these strategies can be effective however this is still just symptom management. The Mind Map System that I use in my practice addresses and dismantles the ’cause’ of the panic attacks. From my experience as people begin to uncover the root cause of the panic attacks they experience them less. Think of symptom management of panic attacks similarly to using a bandaid. The Mind Map is like deep surgery.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Thank you very much. I appreciate your answer. I rarely get panic attacks now, and it’s always related to being smothered as a child. I know this, can’t understand why it continues. Pretty sure I’ve resolved all the issues from then. Again, thank you so much. You seem very caring and warm. I appreciate that too.

        Liked by 1 person

  17. Taking time out to walk in nature has always helped me. Also, taking control of my thoughts and turning the channel in my brain towards the positive has been necessary as well.

    Liked by 3 people

  18. Great insight! When I’m down, I try to find a song. It instantly takes my mind off of what I’m going through and sooner than later I find myself dancing. Who can be angry when dancing? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  19. So much of this rings true with me. I spend a lot of my time both at work and as a volunteer ensuring that people and children feel included & valued. Over the past few weeks, I’ve realised it’s ok to invest in my own wellbeing as much as others’. Self acceptance and giving myself guilt-free time outs has done wonders for my physical and mental health.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Thank you for your post – read this at just the right moment. Have spent all weekend ruminating about something that happened on Friday. What’s helped me? Doing the gardening – very calming. Exercise – always lifts my mood. And hugging the people who love me for who I am, not what I achieve. Very best to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Great tips. I agree with a few other responders that it’s crucial to find something you really enjoy, such as being creative or working out. And then make yourself do it even if you’re not the in the mood! Always takes your mind off the rubbish stuff.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. anne leueen says:

    Great tips! I like the “don’t catastrophize”. That is such a good one. And thank you for adding “treat yourself” we( or maybe just me) do not do that often enough after a bad day.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. maryellxcreamsun07 says:

    This is very insightful read. 🙂 I don’t understand why I struggle with number 3 because although I stop ruminating, the unpleasant events just keep on reappearing—triggered by people who had been hard on me perhaps. 😦

    On the other hand, I have read a part from Jennifer Niven’s All the Bright Places and the characters there like to write the wonderful things on paper then post it on the wall while they crumple the papers with negative things written on it.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. racheblue says:

    Great post, thank you! Some super helpful ideas there. We truly are our own worst enemy at times huh with our constantly self-critical thoughts. Funny humans!

    Here’s my ‘5 things that make you happy’ list:
    1) Singing, loudly to my Spotify playlists, not caring whether I hit the right notes or if someone can hear me.
    2) Drawing and colouring using my lovely Staedtler triplus fineliners (this is not an advert!)
    3) Spending time with my daughter, watching her draw and listening to her chats are mind blowingly refreshing when I let myself be in the moment with her.
    4) Spending quality time with my partner, even if just for a minute or two. Again, just being in the moment, not thinking about the past or an imagined future, just enjoying each other’s company.
    5) Eating delicious, nutritious food makes my body and me soooo happy. Simple things like warm toast, fresh nettle tea, a delicious green smoothie, mmmmmm, yum!

    Liked by 1 person

  25. What would I like to add to this list? Mindfulness. Over time I’ve established a 15 minute practice which I do most days, and one benefit is that it helps me identify what’s really bothering me when I feel down or annoyed or whatever. After a while, especially if one incorporates a quick ‘body scan’, one gets to know the feelings in the body, and if one comes near to them in a kindly manner, it’s surprising what one can learn. I just let them be, and become the ‘companion’ of those feelings, and sometimes in their own good time they express as emotions that manifest as words. Those emotions tell me what’s at the bottom of some of those ‘not-so-good’ day feelings. I hope that makes sense! People I know who can tend towards irritability when they’re down tell me that cultivating a mindfulness practice like this has helped them identify that sometimes they’re directing their irritation at something that’s not really at the root of their issue. ‘Thinking’ things through isn’t always the answer. ‘Listening’ to what the body and the emotions tell one in the moment can be quite a revelation… and it can stop one fixating on the wrong thing!

    Liked by 2 people

  26. D. Rountree says:

    Wow, this post really spoke to me. I know that I’ve struggled with negative thinking in the past. I will definitely work on applying the tips you suggested. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • MakeItUltra™ says:

      I’m glad you liked it and thank you for your comment✨ how is law school coming along? What a great accomplishment 💪🏽

      Liked by 2 people

      • D. Rountree says:

        Thanks! Well, I’ve already graduated, but now it’s just the adjusting to the hereafter. The job searching, the networking, geographic locations,… decisions decisions. It can get overwhelming, but that’s why it’s so important for me to read posts like this in order to stay motivated. It’s a tough world out there.

        Liked by 1 person

  27. mamadog2010 says:

    I definitely needed to read this tonight! Great post thank you!
    I’m really bad at isolating myself, when I’m hurting I tend to hide away.
    Thank you for a great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  28. sunsunnyblog says:

    Great post. #5 is so helpful. We all need a reminder on the good things in our life and what truly makes us happy to appreciate life. For me, that helps uplift my mood.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Great post! Very helpful advice. I might add that when I am feeling down I have to avoid the temptation to eat junk food and fix something healthy. The act of preparing a good meal usually helps cheer me up….doing the dishes..not so much.

    Liked by 2 people

  30. idlewanderer says:

    In the morning, on my way to work, I usually took a moment to appreciate the trees, the light.. even the wind on my face. In that way I’m teaching myself to start the day right.

    Liked by 1 person

  31. tigre23 says:

    Thanks for sharing, it is a nice reminder and reaffirms things that we might already do or provide suggestions for things to try. Peace and blessings! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  32. tigre23 says:

    Appreciating the small things helps – like the sunrise on my morning walk to the station, the flowers I pass, smiling at strangers and greeting them good morning…helps to create a positive modd for the day. Thanks for sharing your post!

    Liked by 1 person

  33. neilsonanita says:

    Fabulous blog. Just the reminder i needed not to catastrophize. My mind tries to do that to me a LOT. Eric your compassion really shines out in this post. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  34. country girl says:

    This is interesting as I was reading something somewhat connected this morning. Sometimes we have to remind ourselves that we are not ‘perfect’ and that ‘yes we will mess up’, yes ‘we will face challenges,losses and many restarts’. Often times it is oh so much easier to ‘forgive’ others than self. We hold ourselves to a different set of standards, which is fantastic but it also makes it even more challenging to tell ourselves ‘it’s okay’ and actually move on. We then end up ruminating and thinking the very worst possible outcomes. So my note to self was ‘This is life, ‘shit’ i.e. errors,mistakes and failures will happen. It’s okay to make mistakes and have crappy days….it’s okay to fall…just remember to refuse to stay down, get up and move forward.’ As Garrison Keillor said “It’s a shallow life that doesn’t give a person a few scars”. So if you have a few scars, it’s a great reminder that you are ‘living’ and that many other ‘beautiful’ out there are proudly wearing scars that show them as awesome warriors!

    Liked by 1 person

  35. Hello

    Very inspiring… thanks for directing towards positive path …

    My opinion:

    Determination and will power ” Yes ..i can do, it’s a just matter of time.. things will be in my favour at the end of the day” and keep reminding myself that,”i am architecture of my life… I want to enjoy every moment of it” helps in up lifting my mood

    Liked by 1 person

  36. When I have a bad day I use emotional therapy of talking to my friends and family members especially my mom. Recently I have noticed that when I am having a bad day or moment I tend to write something in my phone notepad. Some times it is only words for my new poetry. Doing this, helps me calm down and regain my balance.
    Drinking water and chamomile tea also helps.

    Liked by 1 person

  37. Some great advice in here, really enjoyed reading. I’m a particular fan of number 1 and 4. Acknowledging how you feel is so important otherwise you end up with a head in the sand, all your worries building up scenario. And 4, reaching out to others is so important. I feel strongly that more people should talk about their anxiety and or depression but also know that’s difficult. But particularly with anxiety, part of the worry that builds up is that feeling of not feeling normal or trying to hide it from others to seem ‘normal’ but when you acknowledge and share it, and usually find people are actually quite understanding (most of the time!) that’s one less thing to worry about.
    I’ve just started a tiny bit of blogging, sharing some of my anxious times from the last 6 months and hopefully tracking changes and sharing tips amongst other things, so it’s good to read others posts for inspiration 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  38. Yuna says:

    Really enjoyed this piece. I hit a pretty hard point earlier this week, and even just reading this lifted my mood a bit. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • MakeItUltra™ says:

      I am so glad this helped and that you are in a better place ✨


  39. Love this list! I think number 4 is such a huge problem for people today (myself included)! It’s too easy to turn on Netflix and ignore our problems. Turn to people who can help support and encourage! It’s so much more uplifting than binge watching some sit-com.

    Liked by 1 person

  40. whatsmymuse says:

    I have a 5 senses basket. For example, I have dryer sheets. I can smell the pretty fragrance and touch the soft material. I have different types of balls with different textures. I have an old school cd that I can listen to. Recently I added a fidget spinner. My basket is soothing or a good distraction for a couple minutes and then I process my thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

  41. rdsv says:

    Thank you. I am in ‘this mode’ 😀Today. Good that I found ur article to pull me out. Sometimes just crying out till you can laugh also helps😉🤣

    Going to rev log with yours, soon. Thanks again!

    Liked by 1 person

  42. angiesews says:

    Great read! Yesterday was a particularly difficult day. I’ve learned not to run from these feelings. I consider them an indicator and will lean in and figure out what is happening.
    I spend too much time alone ( relocated to a small town)
    Things that help me are laughing, so I have some shows I watch that will help with that, going outside to do anything; Walk, mow the lawn, play with the dog. etc. listening to classical music, make sure I’ve eaten, call my mom.

    Liked by 1 person

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