5 Tips To Improve Your Mental State Instantly

Krystal Emerson

Woman walking in a field.Maksim Goncharenok/Pexels

There are many ways to improve your mental state quickly and easily, with a few simple changes. Many of us have a hard time managing stress and anxiety. It's not an easy thing to do, but it is possible to improve your mental state instantly.

Imagine the following scenario--You wake up one morning to find that you feel under the weather. Your head is pounding, your stomach is in knots, and all you want to do is curl into a ball on the couch. You're not really sure if it's just some sniffles or something worse, but either way, this isn't how you wanted to start your day.

While this may be an extreme example of how we can experience mental lows, many people can relate to these feelings at some point in their life. The good news is there are things we can do to take care of ourselves when we're feeling down-and-out.

1. Write down three things that made you happy recently

Seeing the light at the end of a tunnel is something that most people think about when they are in tough times, and it's no different for me. I am not sure what my light at the end of the tunnel will be, but I know there has to be one out there somewhere. It may not be today or tomorrow, but eventually, all these feelings will turn into positive ones as long as I keep moving forward.

One thing that always helps me improve my mental state instantly is writing down or thinking about a few things that made me happy recently. They don't have to be big things. Sometimes the smallest things can bring us the most joy.

For example, maybe you ate a delicious meal, and it made you feel happy and grateful. Or maybe your dog is always excited to see you when you get home from work, and that makes you feel joyful. Do your best to be observant and don't take these small moments for granted.

2. Get outside and take in some fresh air

It's no surprise that getting outside is a great way to improve your mental state. Research has shown that spending time in nature can reduce stress and increase happiness levels. Spending as little as 10 minutes outdoors can have a significant impact on one’s mood, but if you want the full effect, it’s best to go for an hour or more.

There are so many benefits of spending time outdoors. Being outside has been proven to reduce stress and anxiety, improve moods and increase energy levels. The sun provides vitamin D, but the natural light mimics a similar effect as an artificial light therapy lamp that can also have positive effects on your mental health.

A lot of research suggests how important it is to get outside and take in some fresh air. The reason for this is because being outdoors has been shown to have an immediate effect on the mental state, even if you don't go too far from your home or office.

3. Spend time with someone who makes you laugh or smile

Remember the times when you were so excited to see your mom, dad, best friend, or partner that you felt like jumping for joy? Spending time with someone special can be just as uplifting. In fact, a study found that spending 20 minutes with a loved one can make people feel more fulfilled than if they spent it alone.

A study conducted by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill found that those with strong social relationships have a 50% lower risk of dying within five years than those who lack strong social connections. The importance of connecting with others is not new. Still, our mental health needs to do so in today's world, where we are constantly bombarded by people and information online. 

It can be difficult to find time to spend one-on-one time with someone special, but making more conscious decisions throughout your day will lead you there - like taking an extra ten minutes at lunch or dinner to chat with your spouse about their day instead of checking out what everyone else had for lunch on Instagram.

4. Take 10 minutes to meditate, go for a walk, or do anything else that relaxes your mind and body 

The word "relaxation" can be associated with many images that may differ depending on who you ask. Some people might think about the feeling they get when they're in bed at night or taking a hot bath after a long day. Others might associate relaxation with sleeping more and having less stress.

The human body is a complex, beautiful thing. It can do anything from beating out cancer to helping us run marathons. But sometimes it needs help too. One of the most common ways that people relax their bodies is by using essential oils for aromatherapy. Essential oils are plant extracts that have been used as medicine and perfume since ancient times.

5. Go to bed at a reasonable hour so you can get enough sleep tonight

According to recent studies, people who go to sleep at 10 pm or before are more likely than those who stay up later for an hour or two longer and then try and sleep again in the early hours. You might have heard the phrase "early to bed, early to rise" before. This is not just a catchy rhyme; there's actually some truth behind it. The way you spend your time sleeping can greatly affect your mood, energy levels, and overall health. 

It's been shown that sleep-deprived people have a decreased capacity for attention and memory, and their reaction times can be as bad as those of someone driving drunk. Sleep deprivation can reduce your ability to think clearly by up to 40%.

Research has shown that people who sleep earlier have improved mental health. Studies show that when you get less than seven hours of sleep, your risk for depression increases by about 42%. Your memory and concentration skills also suffer as a result of the lack of rest.

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