Bust Up a Bad Mood!
If You … Lash Out When You're Mad
Are you the kind of person who gets dramatic or explosive when you're upset or angry? If so, you may find that a physical release will help you get out of a bad mood. "Hitting a punching bag -- or even a pillow -- will help you get your emotions out," says Ronda Rose-Kayser, a certified life coach at Sanford Health in Sioux Falls, S.D. Kickboxing is another good outlet for anger, she says.
It also helps to try dealing with your emotions sooner. That's the advice of adolescent psychologist Eileen Stone. "For most people, there's a buildup of emotion throughout the day," says Stone, who is with Sanford Health in Fargo, N.D. "Deal with the little things that get you down sooner. Then you don't have this big burst of anger that explodes all at once."
For instance, if a friend hurts your feelings, talk to her about it instead of pretending to ignore it. Yes, it's probably going to be uncomfortable to bring it up. But, "If you talk to someone about a potential problem when you're still calm, it's much more likely she'll listen," Stone says. "If you wait until you're lashing out, most people will just tune you out."
If You … Hold a Grudge
For some people, a bad grade on a test or a rude comment from a classmate is enough to put a damper on the entire day. If it's difficult for you to let things go, Rose-Kayser recommends asking yourself if what's bugging you is really that big of a deal.
"Here's where self-talk comes into play. You need to talk to yourself to get yourself out of that intensity spiral," she says. "Tell yourself: 'Here's what happened. This is why it happened. I am angry, but I am not going to let one isolated incident ruin the rest of my day.'"
If You … Shut Down When You're Angry
Do you lock yourself in your room or bury yourself under the covers when you're upset? Some people need to be by themselves to process their emotions and get out of a bad mood, Rose-Kayser tells WebMD. And it's fine to give yourself some space. But if you notice yourself building walls between you and the outside world, it's time to break them down and reconnect. Find a way to express yourself.