Life is full of ups and downs, and the craziness of it all can easily put you in a funk at times. Most people assume their bad mood is directly correlated to whatever situation just happened to them. Let’s say, for example, that your significant other unloads the dishwasher and you yell at them for unloading it wrong. It is likely that your anger has nothing to do with the actual dishes, but an underlying issue that you are struggling with. Maybe you are really upset that your best friend said something hurtful and this is the easiest way to vent. Instead of becoming very upset in the moment, stop to process what is really going on. Take the time to really figure out what you’re upset about, even if it means peeling away several layers — you will get to the root of the issue and resolve it much better and faster.
The Importance of Awareness
Do you ever feel like you are upset about something so trivial and part of you knows it has nothing to do with what you are upset about? Instead of just reacting, take a more proactive approach. If you want to create long-term positive change, it is a matter of being more aware. Be aware of your behaviors. Be aware of your triggers to bad moods. Be more aware of how you react. Awareness will change your life. Try to take a step back the next time you are feeling upset about something. Then follow the steps below to improve your outcome.
1. What is Really Bugging You?
When you get upset about something, stop and take a breath. What is really upsetting you? Keep asking yourself questions until you get to the real answer. Review your day. Think about what recently happened to trigger your feelings. Then dig a little deeper. Try to determine what is really causing you to feel upset or mad.
2. Focus on Breathing and Quiet Surroundings
If you want to instantly improve a bad mood, there are two things that are guaranteed to change your feelings. Take a minute to take 5-10 deep breaths. This literally calms you down on a physical level. It will take you out of the moment. I would also advise leaving the environment you are in that is causing you to feel stress. Go someplace quiet and calming. Take in this energy and you will feel better equipped to deal with your situation.
3. Create a Strategy
Once you have determined the cause of your bad mood and removed yourself from the situation, it is time to be proactive. Talk with a friend, therapist or coach to help you problem solve. Then come up with a list of ideas to address the issue and move you forward in your life. You will feel empowered and in control of your outcome. Instead of simply sulking, come up with solutions that will improve your mood.