Unhappy thoughts are common, especially in today’s era that has experienced the effects and the aftermath of a pandemic. While being stuck at home, most of your time will involve just lying in bed and sitting on the sofa while thinking about bad memories, which could further worsen your unhappy thoughts. Of course, unhappy thoughts cannot be erased right away, as there will be instances in our life where we would often be reminded of sad memories even if we are doing something that makes us happy. While unhappy thoughts cannot go away quickly, there are actually certain ways that can help us cope with them. Here are some good ways to cope with unhappy thoughts.
Have a Good Nap
One of the best ways to cope with unhappy thoughts is to get some good sleep. Instead of thinking about sad memories, you can just close your eyes and let your body take a nap on the bed or on the sofa. There will be some moments where you can think about unhappy thoughts while trying to sleep, but you actually have the power to block those out by just thinking of happy memories that make you feel more relaxed. You can accompany this activity by listening or watching ASMR videos on YouTube, which is effective for many people that are having a difficult time sleeping.
Do Some Exercise
Another way to cope with unhappy thoughts is to get some exercise. Getting exercise may sound cliché since many experts recommend it if you want to live a healthy life, but the activity is really effective in helping you to get not only a fit body but also a positive outlook on life. It is known that exercising at least 30 minutes or one hour a day can help you release happy hormones (endorphins) regularly, which is beneficial for you to think more positively and prevent unhappy thoughts from clouding your mind. Most experts recommend that you should get at least 150 minutes of exercise per week, but it would be better to get one hour of exercise per day if you have a lot of extra time.
Make Yourself Busy
Besides exercise, there are plenty of ways to keep your mind busy so that you won’t have to think about unhappy thoughts. The activities that will allow you to focus on what you are actually doing instead of thinking other thoughts are playing video games, listening to music, reading self help or self care books, or watching movies on Netflix, Hulu, or any other streaming apps. Make yourself busy to keep bad thoughts away and just focus on the activities. By doing it, not only will you feel happier, but you will also be more productive for the day. You can also make yourself busy by talking to friends, which is also a great outlet for you to let out your frustrations or sadness if even you want someone to share it with. Expressing your emotions can prevent you from bottling them up, as keeping it to yourself can be dangerous and could lead to breakdowns.
Although this may take a little bit of time before you can actually enjoy it, finding hobbies is also a good way to cope with unhappy thoughts. Hobbies can also be connected to making yourself busy, but learning and mastering different hobbies can take a bit more time. You can start learning how to draw, how to play instruments, or how to play a new sport so that your mind will be more focused on understanding the basics of these hobbies. As previously stated, happiness cannot be found immediately when trying out a new hobby, as you may get frustrated during times where you can’t learn specific moves or processes. However, the feeling of finally learning these hobbies feels gratifying and rewarding, which could sometimes be considered as two of the highest forms of happiness.
Find the Silver Lining in Your Sadness
Unhappy thoughts are sometimes just fears about the future and regrets about the past. You would often think of bad memories that remind you how you would have done things differently about those moments, and you would sometimes get scared of the future since you are unsure of what may happen to you tomorrow or in the following months and years. It is important for you to realize that these are just thoughts, and they shouldn’t be able to control you since they are basically inanimate things that only you can imagine. You should realize that you couldn’t change the past and therefore not have any regrets, and you should focus more on the present instead of worrying about the future. Find the silver lining in your sadness by thinking that your past experiences shaped what you are today and that your worries about the future shaped your goals in life.
If the other ways to cope aren’t effective for you, then it may be time that you seek help from a psychiatrist. Most people are usually afraid of going to a psychiatrist, as they would often see it as a sign of weakness that they can’t overcome their problems. However, not all of our problems can be solved on our own, so it is best that you consult an expert on dealing with these problems. Getting help is not a sign of weakness, as it is actually a sign of strength since you are brave to admit that you can handle your problems and unhappy thoughts on your own.