7 Easy Pick-me-Ups – #BarAThon Day 5

I’m participating in the #BarAThon – a blogging Challenge which involves blogging on every alternate day from Jun 17 – Jun 30, 2017. For each of the seven days, bloggers are free to choose either a theme (‘Seven’) or one of the seven prompts based on Book Titles for each day. Going with the theme—I’ve chosen Seven Easy Pick-me-ups. 

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These days everyone we meet is running around trying to balance a busy schedule. We all seem to be pulled in too many different directions all at the same time, which ends up making us stressed, feel burnt out and end up frustrated. My life is no different either. I have had good days and bad days and terribly bad days. Over time, I’ve also realized that sometimes all we need on a so-called “bad” day is to take time out to boost our mood and recharge our energy level so that we may eliminate the “bad” and fill it in with something positive.

If you’re in a situation where a busy lifestyle gets the best of you, despair not. Help is at hand. Whenever things get thrown into a tizzy and you get desperate for a break, give one of these tried and tested instant pick-me-ups a try. You’ll discover how the simple things in life can truly have a positive impact on your day.

1. Take a walk: This has been my #1 mood enhancer. And, of course, tried and tested. If you think a two-minute walk might possibly not impact your mood or your health, think again. A quick, brisk walk can give us the much-needed fresh air and nature can lift our spirits and reduce anxiety. Just five minutes walking through a park, trail or any green space is enough to spark a cascade of feel-good brain chemicals called endorphins.

2. Write down three things you’re grateful for: When in the midst of a horrible day, nothing is farther from our mind than counting our blessings. Yet, counting your blessings actually helps us appreciate the good things, that we are blessed with. Writing down a list of things we’re thankful for, allows us to refocus our mind on the positive and provides an instant lift to our mood.

3. Stretch out: Coffee and tea breaks work well, I know, but, for once, try taking a stretching break. You can do simple neck rolls and arm stretches from the comfort of your chair, whether at home or in the office, as you stand on the phone, or wherever you are! Even a few simple movements done throughout the day, can refresh the mind and relieve the tension.

4. Buy Yourself Flowers: I can bet you’d never have thought of this one, for a pick-me-up, but, trust me, flowers are the perfect antidote to a bad day. In fact, there’s no need to wait for a special occasion or for someone to send you a bouquet as a gift.  Simply smelling a fresh flower alters your gene activity and blood chemistry, relieving stress and giving you an immediate mood boost.

5. Embrace a saying: Our thoughts determine our lives, so when we’re feeling down, it’s likely our thoughts will be pretty negative. The best way to counter this is by chanting a mantra and repeating it to ourselves. Just a simple thought that needs to be repeated throughout the day.

  • I deserve to be happy.
  • This too shall pass.
  • What can I learn from this?
  • I feel secure in who I am, I don’t need to compare myself to others.

You’ll be amazed what a little change like this can do to boost your mood and help you feel better through the day.

6. Eat a Comfort Food: There’s a reason why they call it ‘comfort food.’ Comfort food is genuinely comforting. Remember, how we’ve all dreamt of our favorite home-cooked food, during our days away from home—be it pakodi and steaming chai, idly-sambardal-roti, aloo parathas! Just remembering them is enough to induce a rush of feel-good chemicals to the brain, specifically fighting feelings of loneliness and depression. While I’m not suggesting that this be your primary method of dealing with a bad day, yet, once in a while, you may eat your favorite foods and relish the comforting memories and feelings that come with them. Remind yourself that there are times when staying happy is more important than weight-watching!

7. Listen to a comedy sketch: Normally, I try and watch something on youtube or read something funny, but last month I tried something different, for the first time. I went for a comedy show at the Atta Galatta, a popular bookstore cum cafe in the city, with 6 funny women taking the stage talking about their lives, their experiences, and observations. The show was hilarious and I laughed so much that my stomach hurt, but it made me appreciate how self-deprecating humor is so needed to get even with the odds in our lives! These days, thanks to the internet, satellite radio, and podcasts, a funny comedy sketch is never more that a few clicks away. Letting yourself laugh may help you see the humor in them and feel a little less alone.

Being kind to ourselves on our off days can make a huge difference to how long the dark clouds hang around. Next time you’re having a low day, give yourself a break and try one of the above instant pick-me-ups. You’ll never go wrong.

They say you have a bad day so you can appreciate the good days even more! Do you agree to that? What’s your favorite mood booster that never fails? As always, I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts, so do share them in the comments below.

barathon

You may read my other posts for the series here:

#Barathon Day 1 – The Fault is in the Stares.

#Barathon Day 2 – Life of Pie.

#Barathon Day 3 – Seven Favourite Film Scores.

#Barathon Day 4 –Seven Memorable Skywatch Shots.

 

48 thoughts

  1. I love your ideas. Watching comedy shows on YouTube is my favorite way to get all the negative thoughts out of the way. And nothing’s better than comfort food to bring that smile back. My favorite is plain old dal chawal omellete 😀

    1. I think we stick to the tried and tested ones when they seem to work better than the rest. Not surprised, when you say #6 and #7 work for you best! They mostly do, coz they’re fail-proof, I guess.

  2. All of it works for me.. never took that stretching break.. i have picked flowers from the roadside wildlings ..paper roses.. or the violet stone flowers.. love them.. and coffee, tea, music, laughter do work wonders…

  3. ……. Be thankful; concentrate on something positive; comfort food; music: spa therapy ; retail therapy……… Some mantras I follow ♥……. Stretching I have not tried but sounds like a good idea 👍

    1. Glad to know your de-stressing mantra, Monika. To each his own I guess, but most of what I’ve listed are sure shot mood boosters. Do try stretching out sometimes. It works beautifully too! Thanks so much for stopping by the blog and sharing your thoughts. 🙂

  4. Way to go Esha – and I love buying flowers too for myself as a pick me up. Its been a practice with me since ages to do so!! I have been doing most of these things and agree with you big big time on being kind to my own self – that is the trick! No guilt, just love yourself!!
    Loved this!

    1. Thanks a lot, Shalz. You said it and I can’t agree more —love yourself! We need to stop neglecting ourselves and looking for a solution elsewhere! Look within and loving oneself. That is way better than being frustrated with our own failings and internalizing all the stress and the negativity!

  5. I’d never heard of the read a saying before but it would be a good idea to search the net for one…. You often come across random nuggets of wisdom when you are net surfing. Thanks for sharing these ideas.

  6. How true about stress and meeting all kind of deadlines, work, reading and writing that we push in the luggage of life. It’s so true. I like number five a lot and all of them are good ways to treat ourselves and a reminder that we deserve nothing less than the best. This post inspires, Esha:)

    1. Thank you so much, Vishal, for the lovely words! You know I’ve been there so often and in so many different frames of mind, some days have been harder than the rest and some days I’ve lost it. I wish I didn’t go through the rough days of trying to figure out what would work, if I had this list for myself. Strange how they all come to you once you’ve been through most of it.

  7. Oh!! your posts always lift up my spirits…recently I have started maintaining a gratitude diary and it has helped me so much…I feel so positive ever since I started writing down good things that happened through the day…this was a very good post di.

    1. So glad to know that you’re maintaining a Gratitude Journal. Small things like these go a long way in making us see things in a different perspective and cheer up. LIfe is hard enough with so many volleys it throws at us all the time, and what you realise is that you can’t be lucky enough to duck it all the time. Some days it hits you really bad and those are the days you need some wisdom, some relief, some comfort and some magic to help yourself.

  8. Absolutely wonderful distressing options Esha. I have tried most of them and yes they work wonders.

    My pick me up are also a nice workout- running/cycling/ swimming, watching the sunset with a refreshing cup of tea and reading a really nice book or blog.

    I love how you have listed these handy tool. Thank you so much. They will be a ready reckoned for a lot of us.

    1. Thanks for your lovely words, Natasha. I am so glad you enjoy watching the sunset over a cuppa just as I do! Turns out to be an exercise in mindfulness too, when I do that! Books and music come handy too, to sweep away that grumpy mood!

    1. Totally agree. Makes so much difference when we are sorted on the inside isn’t it? Self-belief and motivation go hand-in-hand always. Thanks for stopping by at the blog. Will check out yours too, right away. 🙂

  9. Simple and very much essential points. I try my best to watch one episode of friends every night and that is all the comedy I need. Embrace a saying is another good one because once you start believing in your saying and internalising it, it will be like a charm for you when you are confused or at crossroads.

    1. Thats great, Ranjini. It works so well, doesn’t it? I so agree with you about internalising great thoughts. After all, a great saying is a lot more than just words strung together. Glad to see you stopping by the blog. 🙂

    1. That’s a great idea.. a cafe is surely one of the most preferred places for me to meet people when I need to get myself out of a rut. A place where quiet time and peace, are both ensured most certainly!

  10. Greta pointers, Esha. Except for buying flowers, I have done these on and off. Watching comedy shows like The Big Bang Theory, FRIENDS, Kevin Can Wait, Impractical Jokers or AFV are my favorites to de-stress. And I believe in the power of power naps too.

  11. I always love your calm and balanced voice, Esha. And this post, what can I tell you, how much I needed to read this. I’m not keeping well these days. Apart from the physical stress, there is too much going on at work and that is affecting me. That’s why from time to time, I need to remind myself to practice some self-compassion. I need to remind myself to so something, anything to make myself feel good. Your post did that for me today. So, thank you 🙂

    1. Sorry to hear that you’re not in the happiest frame of mind, Nabanita! Hugs first! I hope things get better soon. I think you should focus first on yourself and try to heal the hurt and the uneasy feeling that’s been bothering you. You don’t realise how over time stress causes havoc to our bodily systems and they start malfunctioning causing us even more distress! Do whatever it takes to bring yourself away from the stressors! So glad that my post was able to reach out to you with that element of positivity! Fingers crossed for you dear! Hope you find yourself in a happier space very soon! Take care and remember sharing your worries halves them! ❤️

  12. Taking a walk, embracing all your 4 sayings, gorging on comfort food and listening, watching a comedy show is what I also do when feeling low. It was no coincidence that your 4 sayings are the same as what I tell myself repeatedly. For the comfort, since pizza is an expensive and unhealthy option to be tried often, I have created a new comfort food for myself – Pyaaz ka parantha and a mug full of ginger tea. My mood booster anyday. I was delighted to read your line about staying happy instead of worrying about weight watching 😀 Comedy sketches. I hope my blog posts cater to that purpose for you whenever I write silly or sarcastic.

    1. I have made an observation. There is one more aspect common between you and me. Both of us have the knack of replying to the readers’ comments with words and lines way more than what the commentator has intially written. And, it seems like we are writing mini blogposts in answer to the comments. For me, this act used to prove too much time consuming that I stopped replying altogether. By the way, I always love your long and thoughtful comments on my posts.

  13. For some reason, I thought this was going to be a post about “Pick up” lines! Moving on, my 2 recent mantras are “I can do it” and “I am worth it”. Both are simple yet powerful in their own ways. I love how you have put down very easy to use points, eating something yummy always works for me and getting some fresh air in the system.

    1. Haha…”pick-up lines” would be fun to do sometime…you’ve just given me the idea, namratha. 😀
      Love both the mantras you follow. I do too. Its one of the few things that always works without fail. Thanks for stopping by the blog, Namratha. See you again. 🙂

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