4 Simple Ways To Elevate Your Mood and Release The Pandemic-era Blahs
IT’S BEEN A ROUGH COUPLE OF YEARS!
The covid pandemic, racial justice issues, political polarization, violence at the US capitol, hurricanes… the list goes on. Many of us are feeling shell-shocked. Even though hospitalizations and deaths from covid are down, and some of the worst of the other crises have abated (even if temporarily), it feels like we are emerging from a war-zone and taking inventory of the casualties.
THE SITUATION IS NOT GOOD.
In a previous newsletter, I detailed one of the adverse psychological effects of COVID-19 called languishing. Feelings of weakness, diminishment, and a painful lack of motivation. Many of us have experienced this as a rut with a “F*ck- it” attitude. When you get sucked into the emotional vacuum of feeling “helpless and hopeless,” your chest constricts and the energy in your body slips away.
- How can we climb out of the rut?
- How should we address the languishing and other energy-draining emotions connected this time?
Here are 4 easy ways you can use right now to start your climb out of a rut, or better yet, leap out and start to authentically feel better, without denying or bypassing what you’ve been through.
1. Do Something Differently
Our habits and routines can become like a pair of old shoes that fit our feet well, but they are still old shoes, and it’s time for a new pair. Changing up your routines can bring a refreshing sense of newness into your life. Start small. Make one or two simple changes to your day. Eat something different for breakfast. Listen to a different radio station or recording artist while you drive a different route to work; create a new gym routine or eat something different for lunch. You get the idea. Without burdening yourself with deciding whether or not these simple changes are right or wrong, just do something different and observe the effects.
Doing something differently or changing parts of your routine instantly takes you out of the norm. That in turn, allows you to experience your life differently and hopefully will allow you to shake off the negative residue that is weighing so many of us down. Once outside of your normal routine, you may see your choices more clearly and then can choose more wisely.
2. Use your Intuition
Your intuition is a powerful ally that we all possess. Intuition is a form of knowing or sensing that defies rational processes. It can come as immediate cognition in the sense that it is not derived from reflection or rational thought. Intuition is understood in some circles as a faculty of one’s mind that involves perceptive insight.
I believe one of the best friends you’ll ever have in life is your intuition and tuning in to it and learning to trust it is something that can lead to some remarkable outcomes. Accessing your intuition is a bit like working and developing a muscle. Initially, it can be hard to locate an undeveloped muscle in order to exercise it. But regular practice will strengthen it. Here are some quick tips for accessing, developing and trusting your intuition.
- Practice maintaining an open-minded, playful, non-judgmental attitude. This creates fertile ground to grow your intuition.
- Practice making wild guesses in your everyday life. Guess what a salesperson’s name is, guess what a new person or place will look like or guess who’s calling on the phone. Don’t worry about getting it wrong, you’re just giving your ‘intuition’ muscle some exercise.
- • Try a few simple observation exercises in your daily life. Whether you are in a restaurant or bar, on a train, out shopping, or at work, practice noticing non-verbal behavior in others. Observe how and when people shift their posture, move their eyes, alter their vocal tone or the way they speak and guess how they’re feeling. If you are able to check to see if your observations were accurate or not makes this an exercise with the potential of confirming or disproving your hunches.
3. Reconnect with friends
A healthy exchange between friends can be healing. That exchange actually charges your energy field and produces a synergistic effect of increasing your vitality. Even a phone call can stimulate these changes.
4. Keep looking for signs of hope
Feeling hopeless and helpless is a sign that it is time to re-invest your faith and good energy in your community, humanity and the planet. Here are a couple of ways to do it:
- Practice gratitude – A growing body of research documents the benefits of giving thanks and appreciating one another. Neuroscience has confirmed its beneficial effects on the brain. Researchers conclude that being thankful both decreases stress hormones and restores balance to the part of the brain responsible for managing negative emotions. Less appreciated, but no less valued, is the effect of gratitude on your subtle anatomy: Gratitude opens the heart chakra.
- Spend time in nature – Here again, research shows how restorative is time spent in nature. At the same time, in terms of subtle anatomy, the energies of nature charge and balance your energy field as it attunes to its surroundings.
- Take media breaks – Give your body, mind and spirit the vacation it deserves! There’s a distinction between being an informed citizen and enduring the harmful effects of the 24/7 news cycle. The constant barrage of terrifying soundbites and troubling images depletes your energy field and can negatively contract your solar plexus, heart and third eye chakras.
Many of us can remember a time before Covid, before we found ourselves in a rut. We are fully capable of climbing out and building something better than before. Hopefully, the tips provided here can help you start on this journey.