Monitor Your Mood

by Yvonne Albers
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By Angela Bekiaris

We can’t control what happens around us, but we can try to monitor and control our moods. Getting moody is a natural part of our emotional rhythm, say experts, who add that understanding our moods helps us manage them and feel better. The trick, they explain, is to ‘watch for changes in your mood, particularly any very high swings or very low dips (which may mean you need help to even out your emotional state’.

6 Ways To Manage Your Moods
1. Connect with others.
2. Contribute to your community.
3. Take care of yourself.
4. Challenge yourself.
5. Meditate.
6. Ask for help.

Dealing With Your Children’s Moods
While you might think your child just had a bad day, experts say you need to pay attention to mood swings as they can be a sign of something serious, too. Talking to them is always the best way to get a feel of what’s going on in their lives. If they refuse to talk or if you can’t handle the situation, consider seeking help though a medical professional or support group.
“Learning to manage our anger, change our outlook on life or address psychological issues can help keep our mind active and healthy,” says Betterhealth.vic.gov.au.

Did You Know?
Sometimes moodiness signals a serious medical condition known as a ‘mood disorder’. If your moods can’t be controlled, chat to a medical professional ASAP.

What Causes Moods?
No, it’s not just PMS, gents, sorry to disappoint you. We all have mood swings and for various reasons. According to Betterhealth.vic.gov.au, it’s thought three factors combine to create moods in the brain: biology (for example, hormones and brain chemicals), psychology (such as personality and learned responses), and environment (like illness and emotional stress). Common, everyday causes of a negative mood include:
1. Stress
2. Poor nutrition
3. The weather
4. The news
5. Finances
6. Poor sleep or insomnia
7. Hormonal changes (PMS, puberty and menopause)
8. Interactions with people around you
9. Lack of exercise
10. Pregnancy
11. Drugs and alcohol
12. Depression
13. Anxiety
14. Attention-deficit disorder
15. Dementia
16. Bipolar disorder
17. Physical illness
18. Chronic pain

Angry businesswoman shouting to a stressed employee at office.

Did you Know?
When a person is under stress, their breathing pattern changes. BetterHealth explains that ‘an anxious person takes small, shallow breaths, using their shoulders rather than their diaphragm to move air in and out of their lungs. This style of breathing disrupts the balance of gases in the body’. Experts add that controlling your breathing can help to improve some of these symptoms.

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