We all have those days when we feel a bit ‘off’. Sluggish, tired, fed up or just a bit blue for no real reason.
These are a collection of easy things to try when you’re feeling that way. They cost nothing and take little time, but they always help me to feel refreshed and just that little bit brighter.
Drink a glass of ice cold water (lemon optional!) Not drinking enough water can make you feel bloated, sluggish and just as though your body is not quite working at its optimum. I feel immediately better once the water has passed my lips, and I really notice it if I slack off on my water consumption for a day. It affects my skin and complexion, too.
Check your posture. When we are stressed, our bodies take the strain, usually without us even noticing. Our shoulders curve and tense up, our facial muscles are tight, we slouch, grind our teeth and our tongue moves to the roof of our mouth, making our throat feel tight and less open. Just standing and doing some simple stretches can help to alleviate the stress–touching your toes, reaching up to the sky, rolling your shoulders back and gently moving your neck from side to side. Alternatively, check out some easy yoga poses on YouTube. Usually, if I’m feeling a bit blue, my posture is out of whack.
Eat an orange, or another favourite piece of fruit. Not only is it refreshing but it is packed with nutrients that your body craves. Make sure you are eating your greens, too. Cruciferous vegetables like kale, brussels sprouts, spinach and cauliflower are full of micro nutrients and will not leave you feeling sluggish or bloated.
Dance. Put on some good music and just get your body moving. The endorphins will flow, you’ll work out those kinks in your shoulders and back, and the music will cheer you up.
Go for a walk. It’s amazing what a dose of fresh air and sunshine can do for our physical and mental state, even if we don’t feel like it. If you can get out into nature for a while, even better. Being near trees, flowers, animals, the ocean and the elements is wonderful for lending perspective to whatever we’re going through.
Learn some basic acupressure and try it out. There are some fabulous videos on YouTube that are easy to follow. If you have any pain, or feel as though you may be coming down with a cold, I guarantee that you will feel a difference, a release of pressure and energy, once trying acupressure.
Check your breathing. When we are tense or anxious, our breathing becomes shallow and fast, or we often hold our breath subconsciously. Exhaling for longer than you inhale is the key to calming down. You can count the inhales and exhales if you like (try 5 in, 7 out) or you can try a simple mantra while you are breathing. I like Thich Nhat Hanh’s mantra: ‘Breathing in, I calm body and mind. Breathing out, I smile. Dwelling in the present moment I know this is the only moment.’ Focusing on the breath and the present moment is the best and only way to deal with anxiety and negative feeling. If you can master your breath, you can master your anxiety.
Learn something new. Try an introductory lesson to a new language online, or watch a documentary you have never watched before. TED Talks are great for motivation, too. Sometimes we get into a bit of a rut and watch or listen to the same things over and over. Hearing something new can inspire us and again help us to gain perspective.
Do that thing you’ve been worrying about. Often when we’re feeling a bit off, it’s because we have something niggling at us that we should be doing–preparing something for work, replying to an email or just tidying the living room. Working for even five minutes on the task that is bothering you will help you to feel more productive and less afraid of tackling it. Just get it done!
Have a hot bath or a shower. Enjoy the sensations and the scent of your shower gel and shampoo. Wash the sluggishness away and feel refreshed!
Write your feelings down in a journal. Sometimes we don’t really know what’s bothering us until we write it down.
Reach out to a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while. You’ll brighten their day, and yours in the process.
Lastly, my favourite thing of the moment–enjoy a session with your scalp massager! (If you haven’t got one, you can find one easily on Amazon for about £5.) These simple metal, whisk-like objects feel amazing and really help your hair to look shiny and healthy, and also to gently massage the pressure points around your temples, neck and ears. It always makes me feel wonderful and much more relaxed.
I hope you have a wonderful Sunday. Please share any other tips you have for cheering yourself up or just taking away that haze when you’re feeling a bit ‘meh’. I look forward to reading them!