Banish the New Year blues
Have you found yourself in a bit of a new year's slump?
The start of the year often feels like it is dragging on forever, leaving us feeling low and out of sorts. You may have heard of Blue Monday, which this year falls on 17th January - it's been designated as the most depressing day of the year. Now there’s a powerful suggestion!
If you are feeling the blues, you don't have to put up with these emotions, or wait for something to improve in your life. You already have the ability to change your state to something more positive.
Here's how you do it:
Create an open and confident posture - shoulders back, head up, chest open. This sends a message to your brain that you are feeling good.
Breathe as if you really are feeling fantastic! Take deep, cleansing, empowering breaths from the diaphragm, rather than shallow chest breaths.
Smile - even if you have to fake it! Your brain doesn't know the difference and will pick up on the positive vibe. Do something that brings your inner giggle to the surface.
Become aware of your internal dialogue. Change critical, negative self talk into something more empowering and kind. Ask yourself whose words you are hearing. Are they really your words, or are they the words of someone from your past who has planted unhelpful suggestions in your mind?
Get moving! Motion creates emotion, so go for a walk, do some exercise, dance or try some yoga. It's one of the quickest ways to lift your mood quickly and naturally.
Count your blessings. When we focus on the things that are good in our life, our mind gives us more of the good stuff and the negative things become less significant.
Get enough sleep. On average we need at least seven hours of unbroken sleep each night. Lack of sleep has a massive impact on our mood.
Expose yourself to natural daylight as soon as possible each morning, by getting our for a walk or sitting in your garden. Light suppresses the production of the sleep-inducing hormone, melatonin, and wakes us up.
Nourish your body with a balanced diet including plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables. Keep hydrated with water, and consider swapping out any drinks which could lead to a caffeine slump.
When we are in the depths of low mood, it’s hard to believe we have the power to effect a change. But all of these small changes add up to a big change, so if you're feeling low I challenge you to see how many you can implement in your life.
Then sit back and notice how you begin to feel differently about … everything!