With the New Year coming up, everyone is putting together their 2023 resolutions and setting goals for how they can make positive, healthy changes in their lives. One of the best things you can do for yourself this upcoming year is to boost your mood. Here are some tips that may help.
How to Boost Your Mood
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that is often considered the ‘pleasure chemical’ because of its role in your brain. It’s released in small amounts when you perform pleasurable activities such as having a nice meal or going for a walk. Your brain does this as a way to reinforce this type of behavior, which is great when you’re making healthy choices but not so good if the pleasurable choices are self-destructive (such as substance abuse or gambling).
Dopamine also plays a role in concentration, focus, memory, motivation, and productivity, so in addition to augmenting your mood, it can also help you achieve your other 2023 goals. To increase dopamine production in a healthy and sustainable way, you’ll want to perform beneficial activities that bring you pleasure. Here are a few suggestions:
Spend Time Outside
Studies consistently show that being out in nature improves people’s moods. Some studies also demonstrate that spending time in sunlight can increase your dopamine receptor count! So try getting outdoors more often this year, even if it’s just to take a short walk around the neighborhood.
Speaking of walks, increasing your physical activity is another great way to improve your mood and reduce feelings of anxiety and depression. We always hear about how important exercise is, but it can really benefit your life in multiple ways. In addition to helping your physical health, exercise increases endorphin levels that improve your mood, energy levels, and focus.
Take Time to Enjoy a Delicious Drink or Meal
Doing pleasurable activities like listening to music or practicing a hobby is really beneficial for improving your overall mood and perspective. Even the simple act of eating your favorite food or tasting a delicious beverage can uplift your spirits. This is especially true when they’re composed of ingredients that have a long history of health benefits like herbal-based sharbat, quinoa, date fruits, or chia seeds do. Eating a healthy diet in general can enhance your overall well being, and getting the nutrients your body needs can raise your dopamine levels. But simply consuming something delicious can also elevate your mood.
Get Enough Sleep
Sleep is super important for your brain to function properly. When we’re sleeping is when we’re storing our long term memories and regaining energy and making subconscious connections. It’s like our way of recharging. You need 7-9 hours of sleep each day in order to keep your brain and body healthy and functioning, in turn releasing proper levels of dopamine and other essential neurotransmitters. Getting in a regular sleep routine — going to bed and waking up at the same time each day — can help you fall asleep quicker and get a deeper, more restful snooze.
Taking the time to meditate, breathe deeply, or try yoga can help reduce your stress and improve your mood. It doesn’t have to be for a long time, but a few minutes each day can make all the difference in the world. It can increase your dopamine levels but it can also improve your attention span, memory, sleep, problem-solving skills, blood pressure, pain, and more. Just try to take a few minutes to focus on your breath as you breathe in and out deeply, and readjust your attention back to your breath each time your mind inevitably wanders. You can begin to feel the benefits of this exercise in just a couple minutes, and those compound over time the more often you practice relaxation techniques.
Practicing gratitude has consistently been shown to improve both your mood and your health. Life can be stressful and overwhelming, but remembering to acknowledge the good in your life can help center your perspective and shift your viewpoint to a more positive outlook. Focusing on what you have rather than what you lack helps you to cultivate more uplifting relationships, decreases your stress, and helps improve your health. Whether you take 10 minutes to write down a few things you’re grateful for each day or you give thanks to someone who has made an impact in your life, the mood-boosting results will speak for themselves.
Our team here at Sharbat Republic wishes you good luck on all your 2023 New Year’s resolutions! Maybe add trying one of our sharbats to your list. It’ll be an easy goal to tick off, and a positive start to a positive new year!