Snap out of it: How to overcome a bad mood

bad mood to a good mood

Do you ever find yourself feeling stressed, overwhelmed, or just plain cranky?

Well, we have some simple yet effective tips to help you boost your happiness and wellbeing.

From a simple smile to embracing the power of music, these strategies will turn up the grin and banish the grouch. So, let’s dive in and discover how you can create a more positive and fulfilling life.

Go to your happy place

Close your eyes and imagine your favourite place or moment.

Whether it’s a serene beach, a cozy cabin in the mountains, or a cherished memory, visualising this happy place can instantly calm your mind and bring a sense of peace. It could even be a good memory.

Take a few moments each day to immerse yourself in this visualisation and let the positive energy flow.

Tune it out

Music has a remarkable ability to evoke emotions and uplift our spirits.

Create a playlist of your favourite songs or explore different genres that resonate with you. Whether you’re tapping your feet to a catchy tune or belting out your favourite lyrics, music can be a powerful tool for clearing your mind and gaining perspective.

Take five

Sometimes, all you need are a few moments of solitude to recharge.

Find a quiet space, take a deep breath, and give yourself permission to do nothing for just five minutes. Focus your eyes on one object and whenever your mind starts to wander, gently bring it back to the present moment. This simple practice can help slow down your racing thoughts and prepare you for what lies ahead.

Take a walk

Getting some fresh air and moving your body can work wonders for your mood.

Nature has a remarkable ability to heal and rejuvenate.

Spend time outdoors, whether it’s gardening, hiking, or simply sitting in a park.

The sights and sounds of nature have been scientifically proven to lower stress levels and boost overall wellbeing. So, put on your walking shoes and enjoy the benefits of being outdoors.

A picnic is another fantastic idea, but sometimes all it takes is wandering around your backyard with a coffee in your hand.


When you feel your stress levels rising, pay attention to your breath.

Take slow, deep breaths and focus on your inhalation and exhalation.

This simple act of mindful breathing can instantly lower your stress and promote relaxation.

So, the next time you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a moment to breathe deeply and let go of tension.

Fake it until you make it

Did you know that smiling can trick your brain into feeling happier?

Whether it’s a genuine or a fake smile, the act of smiling releases endorphins, natural chemicals that relieve stress and boost your mood.

So, put on a smile and watch as your spirits lift.

If that doesn’t work, crack out your favourite comedy show or movie and let them do the hard lifting of putting a smile back on your face.

Hug it out

Physical touch has a profound impact on our wellbeing.

Whether it’s a warm hug from a loved one or a friendly handshake, these gestures release oxytocin, the feel-good hormone. If you don’t have a partner, don’t hesitate to ask a close friend for a hug.

Talk it out

Sometimes, all you need is someone to lend an ear without judgement.

Reach out to a friend or family member who you know will listen and provide support.

I did read somewhere you should also try talking to someone on your daily commute. I can only imagine the hostile stares this would engender on the 8.15 to the city. Maybe try another tactic.

Step it up

Exercise is not only beneficial for your physical health but also for your mental wellbeing.

Try activities that get your heart pumping, such as jogging, brisk walking, or cycling.

The endorphins released during exercise can improve your mood and help you gain a fresh perspective on life’s challenges.

Wet, wet, wet

There’s something soothing about immersing yourself in water.

Whether it’s taking a refreshing swim, enjoying a relaxing bath, or simply splashing water on your face, these activities activate your body’s natural relaxation response.

So, dive into water and let it wash away your stress.

Treat yourself

Take time to pamper yourself and indulge in activities that bring you joy.

Whether it’s enjoying a piece of chocolate, reading a good book, or engaging in a hobby you love, self-care is essential for your wellbeing.

In the mood

Creating a positive environment can significantly impact your mood.

Turn off notifications, declutter your space, and create a playlist of uplifting songs that make you happy.

Good goal

Having something to look forward to can provide a sense of purpose and motivation. Set goals or plan exciting activities that ignite your passion. Whether it’s signing up for a marathon or embarking on a new adventure, having a goal to strive for can infuse your life with excitement and anticipation.

Open the memory bank

Take a trip down memory lane by looking through old photos or reading your journal entries.

Remind yourself of the good times and relive the joyous moments.

Nostalgia can evoke positive emotions and serve as a reminder that life is full of beautiful experiences.

Get creative

Engage in a creative endeavor that brings you joy.

Paint, draw, write, or plan an adventure.

Let your imagination run wild and allow yourself to express your innermost thoughts and desires.

Creating something can be a therapeutic and fulfilling experience.

Do you have a tactic to turn your mood around? Does it always work? Why not share your experience in the comments section below?

Also read: What links comfort food, stress and your brain?

Written by Jan Fisher

Accomplished journalist, feature writer and sub-editor with impressive knowledge of the retirement landscape, including retirement income, issues that affect Australians planning and living in retirement, and answering YLC members' Age Pension and Centrelink questions. She has also developed a passion for travel and lifestyle writing and is fast becoming a supermarket savings 'guru'.

One Comment

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  1. The suggestion to talk to strangers does actually work as I do it nearly every time I go down the street but, and it’s a big but, there is a wrong and a right way to do it. If you look at people’s faces, many will be preoccupied, frowning, distracted, deep in thought etc and you don’t say anything to them as it will be an uninvited interruption. Some however will be looking relaxed or smiling and provided you can something relevant to where you both are a connection can be made. Sometimes brief, like a shared smile over a child’s antics, or a sentence like saying something weather related eg how cold it is, or how good to see the sun out. I have had long conversations with strangers when brief comments have led to finding we share a love, gardening and anything food related especially, but also specifics like particular TV shows or books etc. Neither I nor the other intend to meet again. It’s not even stated, it’s just an easy sharing of a moment where we happen to be occupying the same space, whether it’s a smile, or a long conversation, rather than silence, and it always feels good.

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