It is that time of the week. The Sunday Scaries are creeping in. Monday looms closer and closer. The dread of returning to the grind is real. But what if a Monday did not have to feel like a Monday? What if there were things you could do to make Monday seem less daunting? Good news! There are ways to boost your mood on Monday Morning that will make Monday seem less like Monday and more like any other day of the work week.
Crank Up the Music
According to SCL Health, listening to your favorite songs can positively affect your mood. This is due to the fact that songs that you really connect with that give you the "chills" actually releases the chemical in your brain called dopamine which is the happy chemical. So, make a playlist of your favorite songs that make you happy and turn them up on Monday morning as you get ready!
Get Some Sunshine
Although the drive in your car may expose you to sunshine, it might not boost your mood due to the annoying guy in front of you who likes to break because he saw a ghost crossing the road... What you should consider doing is to build a brisk walk outside at some point during your morning routine. That might be before you leave your house, upon arriving at the office, or during your mid-morning coffee break. Although getting up a few minutes earlier might seem like a mood killer, the positive effects of sunshine on your body will make up for any lost sleep.
Eat a Balanced Breakfast
Yes, your doctor has been on your case about this one. In addition to being good for your overall health, eating a balanced breakfast helps keep your blood sugars stable. This reduces the likelihood of a sugar high followed by a crash. Sugar rushes are great, but the huge dip in sugar levels afterwards is a definite mood killer. A balanced breakfast will include complex carbs and foods high in protein and fiber. A few examples of breakfasts with a good balance of complex carbs and proteins would be whole wheat toast with peanut butter, oatmeal with apples or strawberries and chia seeds, and a whole grain bagel with cream cheese or any type of nut butter. Your body and mood will thank you.
Avoid Sugary Drinks
Whether it be your Starbucks drink, orange juice, or milk, you would be surprised how much sugar can be found in drinks. You would be surprised how much sugar is in your Venti Iced Chai Tea Latte. Check it out next time you complete a mobile order. It might make you think twice, since the daily recommendation for sugar intake is 50 grams and your drink sits at 10 grams above that. Drinks high in sugar, even naturally occurring like in milk and juices that are 100% juice, will quickly increase your blood sugar levels. Unless you are drinking a smoothie with Greek yogurt, the amount of protein in your drink will not outweigh the carbs and your energy boost will be short-lived due to the fall in blood sugars a short time later. Opt for high-protein shakes, which can double as your balanced breakfast.
Boosting your mood directly correlates with boosting your energy. A key way to boost your energy is to make sure that you are hydrated. The human brain is comprised of about 77% water, so it is no wonder that hydration affects energy. Starting off your morning with a glass of water will help kickstart your morning hydration. Hydration can come from other high-water liquids as well such as coffee and tea. You can also hydrate by eating fruit and vegetables that have high water content. Watermelon has the highest water content of all fruits. Lettuce and cucumber tie for first for vegetable with the highest water content. Although most people would not consider eating lettuce and cucumber for breakfast, you could add it to a smoothie filled with some complex fruits and foods with high protein content.
Watch a Funny Video
Now, it is not just any funny video that you should watch. It is of a specific content area: cats. One assistant professor at the University of Indiana Bloomington did a study of 7000 participants who were asked how watching funny cat videos affected their mood. They reported a boost in energy and happiness post-cat watching. If cats are not your thing, you may try funny dog videos are just what you need to scare off the Sunday Scaries and help you boost your mood on Monday morning.