No doubt that the pandemic has had brought forth anxiety, uncertainty and disruption in many of our lives. However, many of us are not aware that our moods are being affected more than you have realized by the small choices you make every day – your postures, exercise routines or even your social media habits can suck the happiness out of your day. I have listed here 5 bad habits that are sabotaging your good moods, and what you can do to turn it around.
1. You don’t exercise
According to a 2018 journal in JAMA Psychiatry, findings in clinical trials suggested that resistance exercise training significantly reduced depressive symptoms among adults regardless of health status. In another study conducted by University College London researchers found a correlation between physical activity and depression. We all know that when people were depressed, they were less active. Similarly, people who were active would be less likely to be depressed.
Just do it and be active. Why not start with something easy and light such as evening walk, morning body stretch, etc. Incorporate into your lives with walking to do errands or taking the stairs.
2. Bad posture
Thomas Jefferson once said: “Do you want to know who you are? Don’t ask. Act! Action will delineate & define you.” Our body does not lie to us. It is harder to recall a happy memory if we are sitting down in a slouched posture. Try doing so with a straight back and chin up. A study published in the Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry showed that when subjects were asked to walk with shoulders slouched, hunched over, and with minimum arm movements, they experienced worse moods than those that did the opposite. How we feel can affect the way we walk, but the inverse is also true.
Lift your chin up and roll your shoulders back to keep your outlook on the positive side.
3. Addicted to your mobile device
Can you recall the last time when you were completely electronic-device free? It is definitely not a good sign if you could not recall. The problem with the heavy and long period of connecting to electronic devices is the overstimulation on our bodies and minds. In other words, we would never truly be resting and regeneration our bodies and our minds. Eventually, this would manifest itself as anxiety and or moods shift.
Try to cut down on the usage on electronic-device and replace the time with more physical interaction with people, or with nature. You would thank yourself for it, one day.
4. Stuck in a toxic relationship
In my course of serving my clients, many a times, many of them were suffering from anxiety and depression without realizing that the cause was because of a toxic relationship they were in. It was like an undetected “cancer” that ate away their self-esteem, self-worth and self-belief. They began believing that they are incompetent, not good enough or selfish. Coming from a over-protective family, I have been brought up thinking that I was never good enough and that I needed to proof myself constantly to prevent being compared down by others.
It is not easy to be aware of a toxic relationship and you may need some help with this one. You might need to consult either a professional, a family member, or a close friend to help you recognize the signs.
5. You love to multitask
Many of us are unconsciously guilty of multitasking: we take a quick lunch, or eat at our desks; scroll through Facebook while watching TV; and speaking to someone and texting at the same time, and many more. Although many people believe they’re being more productive by multitasking, that’s not actually the case. Research shows that it just leaves us more stressed out, more oblivious to what’s happening around our surroundings, and unable to communicate effectively.
It’s simple, really: just put away the phone, turn off the television, and pay attention to what you are doing and what is going on around you. Be presence. Your loved ones would appreciate that. Doing this would not only please the hearts of your loved ones, it also good for your soul.