7 Super-Easy Tips To Cheer Yourself Up Fast — Using Only Your Body And Mind


To cheer yourself up, you hardly need anything

No drugs, apps, technology, equipment or money are required, just a little time, focus and a commitment to taking care of yourself and your mood.

We can all feel a little down from time-to-time;

Circumstances, events, situations, or even the weather can throw us off course. Other times, there might be no obvious reason for feeling low. Regardless of the causes, you’ll want to cheer yourself up quickly. If you prefer to listen, rather than read, scroll to the bottom of the page for the podcast.

Follow these 7 tips to improve your mood and cheer yourself up — fast.

  1. Stop ‘Shoulding’ on yourself.
  2. Make friends with your Internal Terrorist.
  3. Mind your language.
  4. Make sure things are looking up.
  5. Stay present, centred and grounded.
  6. Decide to be happy.
  7. Lift your spirits.

1. Stop ‘Shoulding’ on yourself

We all talk to ourselves — often unwittingly. But if you’re not aware of what you’re doing, your self-talk may trigger your low mood. Telling yourself what you ‘should’ do you will make you feel dissatisfied. Yes, I know it sounds a little crazy, but read on and give me a chance to explain.

Words such as should, ought, got to, have to, need to and must, imply that a specific action is needed — that it’s compulsory. And if it’s compulsory it takes away our choice.

We humans like having choice

So we rebel against this sense of compulsion, digging in our heels and stubbornly refusing to do what ‘needs’ to be done.

To illustrate this point, when I’m training people, I’ll say to a participant who has their legs crossed, “You should uncross your legs.” Seldom do they comply! Sometimes they cross their arms as well! I ask them to notice what their initial, internal reaction was. They’ll respond with words like ‘defiant’, ‘stubborn’, ‘no!’ ‘don’t tell me what to do!’ etc. They do the opposite of what I tell them they ‘should’ do.

Obstacles with ‘shoulding’ language

You might say to yourself, “I need to mow the lawns/clean the stove/do my tax return” etc. only to find that days, weeks and indeed months or years go by without that task getting done. You’re rebelling against yourself. That’s no way to cheer yourself up now, it it?

Coffee-Humans desire choice

‘Shoulding’ language leaves you feeling you have no choice

And so you procrastinate.

The more you procrastinate, the more you beat yourself up. This leads to a lack of self-esteem and motivation, which contribute to crappy moods.

In another article, called Musting: How To Put Off Procrastinating (Shoulding is the same thing — just a different word!) there’s an 8-minute audio so you can get first-hand experience of the impact of these evil little words!

To cheer yourself up, use different words

Use words that restore your sense of choice. Try more empowering words. Words that open up the possibility of doing whatever it is you want to get done. These words are, ‘like’ ‘could’, ‘want’, ‘may’, ‘might’ etc.

Try this out:

Think of something you’ve been saying you ought to do (or need, should etc.). For instance, “I’ve got to clean the windows today.” Now replace the compulsion word with a more empowering term. In the example sentence, I’d replace ‘got’ with ‘like to’. So the sentence is now, “I’d like to clean the windows today.” Notice how that feels different as if you suddenly have a choice and possibilities again!

I know people who’ve accomplished amazing feats, just by changing this aspect of their language. They’ve stopped their self-sabotage — and avoided the pit of procrastination.

2. Make friends with your Internal Terrorist.

Your internal Terrorist is the part of you that sneaks in and provides ongoing commentary. He loves to point out ALL your shortcomings. (It’s probably him that is also ‘shoulding’ on you) He’s aggressively opinionated and has lots to say — mostly negative!

We’re often told to ‘think positively’, to stop the negative self-talk and replace it with something supportive. This might be sound advice, but having a gentle dialogue with your Internal Terrorist might be more beneficial. The Internal Terrorist isn’t so bad. After all, he’s another aspect of you. So while his comments might seem cutting, his intention is positive.

Have the conversation

Ask him what his positive intention is behind the hurtful comments. He might just be pointing out your mistakes, so you don’t repeat them.

3. Mind your language

Yes, yet another point about language

The quality of our internal dialogue is vital to our mental health and well-being. The language you use impacts your neurology. Positive language makes you feel better.

Imagine if lived or worked with someone who continually told you you were useless, incompetent, nasty, lazy, slow, etc.

Wow! OK That’s enough, stop it now!

You wouldn’t put up with it! You’d either demand the person stop, you’d leave, or — depending upon your temperament — do something more drastic!

So here’s the kicker:

Do you use that kind of disempowering language to yourself? Come on now, own up — I admit to being guilty.

I have a short audio that will give you a first-hand experience of the impact of words on your body. It’s called How words affect your health’. Have a listen, it’s only two minutes long.

What if you used some empowering language to yourself? How would you feel at the end of each day if you told yourself that you were smart, gorgeous, lovely, kind, compassionate, etc? Do you think you might cheer yourself up?

Here’s a challenge for you

If you want to cheer yourself up, use Steph’s rule.

What’s Steph’s rule?

Only talk to yourself the way you’d talk to someone you genuinely cared about.

Bazinga! (As Sheldon from Big Bang Theory would say!)

4. Make sure things are looking up

make sure things are looking up

When we look up, we access the visual part of our brain. You can visit the NLP Eye Accessing chart to get some more information about this. When we look up, we become more animated, we speak more quickly and feel more upbeat. We cheer UP! Great way to cheer yourself up.

When we’re feeling down, we look down (surprise, surprise).

We talk about feeling low. Looking down and to your left (for most of the population) shows you’re talking to yourself. Down and to your right indicates you’re getting in touch with feelings and emotions. The expression, “I feel downright miserable” isn’t coincidental!

So looking up and focusing on what you’re looking at can take you out of the negative feelings associated with tips 1-3, thus brightening your mood. You’ll benefit from looking out of a window and into the distance.

Even better is going for a walk and looking at what’s around you. It’ll take your attention away from yourself and give your head a rest from ‘shoulding’, your Internal Terrorist and disempowering language.

5. Stay present, centred and grounded.

You only have right now, this present moment. Every other moment is in the past or the future. Worrying about events that have or haven’t happened, or becoming anxious about the future takes you away from happiness in the present. You become distracted and unfocused, and that is reflected in your state of mind in your body. This affects your immune system, often causing ill health. You become uncentered and out of control.

A simple way of centring yourself is through a technique called grounding. The process itself forces you to be present in the moment, or you won’t be able to do it. Here’s how it works. Stand up straight with your feet about shoulder-width apart. If you can do this exercise standing on the ground or the beach (not concrete), even better.

Now, focus all your attention on the area of your solar plexus. The solar plexus is in the pit of your stomach. It is about halfway between your throat and your belly button. Concentrate on bringing all your energy to that point. Then, imagine roots running from the solar plexus spreading out and running down your legs and deep into the ground below you. Alternatively, imagine bolts of lightning shooting down your legs, anchoring you into the earth. Notice the new sense of calm, strength and solidarity.

6. Decide to be happy.

We actively decide on our emotional states. Although those decisions may not always be conscious, that doesn’t mean they can’t be. You can change any decision by re-deciding. And, of course, sometimes it would seem inappropriate to feel happy.

Happy children

Given that we only live in the present moment, why wouldn’t you want to make the most of this moment by being happy? What does happiness even mean? Without going off on some philosophical tangent, happiness can range from peace to contentedness to absolute joy.

Happiness then, must be whatever you determine it to be

You can decide to be happy.

I’ve written several posts about happiness, so I won’t rewrite those here. Please read these two posts for more ideas on how to achieve happiness.

How to be happy. Is it really this simple?  And, How to Pursue happiness, instead of chasing after it.

7. Lift your spirits

Doing what we love makes life joyful. But many people deprive themselves of feeling uplifted until… they’ve finished all their work, the kids are in bed, they’ve done the dishes, etc.

Sometimes, when they finally get to whatever uplifts their spirits, they’re too tired to enjoy it!

Investing time to do the stuff that brings you joy will bring dividends. You’ll feel renewed, reinvigorated and re-inspired.

If you don’t, you may experience regret, resentment, disappointment and discontent.

Look for simple day-to-day activities (or sometimes INactivity) that make you happy and bring you joy. For me, these include:

  • Walking on the beach every morning with Ragz, my Tibetan terrier.
  • Catching up with friends and watching the dogs playing together is uplifting.
  • Noticing the constant changes in the environment grounds me and sets me up for the day.

Ngaranui Beach Raglan

  • I feel spoilt by being able to work sitting outside on the deck when it isn’t too hot or cold.
  • Meeting a friend for coffee and getting out of the office for an hour is something I look forward to.
  • Sitting in my bean bag in the lounge and doing research away from the desk puts me in a different headspace.

What lifts your spirits?

How can you insert them into your day — before you’re too tired to enjoy them? You might have to put something else aside. Still, I can assure you it’ll be worth it for the improvement in your mental and emotional health and wellbeing.

So, 7 super-easy tips to cheer yourself up fast — using only your body and mind. No drugs, no apps, no equipment and no money required. All you need is a little time and focus and a commitment to taking care of yourself and your mood.

Here are the 7 tips to cheer yourself up again:

  1. Stop ‘Shoulding’ on yourself.
  2. Make friends with your Internal Terrorist.
  3. Mind your language.
  4. Make sure things are looking up.
  5. Stay present, centred and grounded.
  6. Decide to be happy.
  7. Do something to lift your spirits.

Want to learn more?How to Change Your MInd - Tablet

There’s a follow up to this post it’s called 7 EXTRA Ways To Be Cheerful – In 5 Minutes Or Less.

There’s also my best-selling eBook How to change your mind

NLP Practitioner Training

P.S. The ‘How to Cheer Yourself Up’ podcast below is a pretty lively and humorous one I recorded with Aaron Mooar at Raglan Radio. We cover all seven tips above, with lots of questions and answers, examples and laughter. I also wrote this post on the subject, so you have something you can revisit and quickly find each tip, rather than trying to find the spot again on the podcast. You’re welcome!

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Tags: Language, Managing mood and emotions, Podcasts and audio tips, Self-awareness, Self-confidence and self-esteem, Self-talk


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