There's been a lot said about moods and I know you both hear and use the word "mood" in your everyday life both at home and at work. "Isn't Miss Thing in a foul mood today? My child is in some kind of tickled pink mood. Who rained on his parade today? Don't bother me. I'm in a nasty mood. I can accomplish anything I want."

I did a bit of research about moods on the internet and there are just tons of different ways to consider moods, and I'm going to choose this definition from Wikipedia
to define what I mean by a mood. A mood is a relatively long lasting emotional state. Moods differ from simple emotions in that they are less specific, less intense, and less likely to be triggered by a particular stimulus or event.

From my internet search, there seems to be some disagreement about how many basic moods there are, so I'm going to add my take on the topic to the mix. I think there are just two basic categories of moods: happy moods and sad moods.

I believe that your moods are created by the thoughts that you think. If you predominantly think happy, healthy, wealthy, successful thoughts, you will enjoy happy moods. And if you think basically thoughts about I can't, life is tough, they have more than I do, you're unfair, you will have sad moods in your experience.

Moods are habitual, based on the habitual thoughts you think. If you don't like being labeled as moody, you need to think different thoughts. I don't believe an individual can move from sad to happy at the snap of a finger, but you can begin to move your sad thoughts (the ones that create your unhappy moods) to a staging area where you ask what I like to call Possibility Questions.

  • Do you think it's possible to change this uncomfortable mood?
  • What do you think it might take?
  • If I were to think some happy thought, what would it be about?
  • Do I really think my WHOLE life is unhappy?
  • What about the color of my slacks? At least I like that!
  • Can I find one small thing to be happy about?
  • Can I find another?
  • Can I build a habit of seeing things more positively?
  • If a positive person looked at my life, how would they see it?
  • What would a positive person do to change my life?
  • Can I find a positive person and ask them?

Changing My Moods

I once saw a bumper sticker on a car in California that said "Look for the good and praise it." I loved that thought. Let's look at some ways you can look for the good and change your moods from unhappy or sad to something better.

Act happy. Stand in front of your mirror and just smile for a few minutes. Wave at people you pass on the street. Trust me: if you're smiling and waving, you absolutely cannot continue to entertain a morose mood.

Exercise. You've had that treadmill holding up the clothes in your bedroom for months now or it's become a bed for your cats. Move the critters and the clothes off, and hop on for a nice, refreshing walk. Move your arms as well as your legs. You will pump up your energy and improve your outlook.

Read Something Uplifting. You might find this in a self-help book, or in a religious tome. Even better would
be to watch something inspirational from a TV show or a DVD from a favorite author. I suspect you'll watch it until you find something useful for your day....and that would be enough.

Gratitude. Make lists of things you have to be grateful for. You might become know as the goody goody, but heck, you'd be grateful and happy versus whatever sad mood you had in there before. And sometimes, you just have to let them think you're a goody goody. Why not? It's something to be grateful for.

Force Yourself Into Happiness. If your negative mood is deeply entrenched - been there a long time and
goes deeply inside you - you might have to light a stick of dynamite inside you and get really firm about wanting to be happy. "No, by golly, I will NOT stay down today. I am going to be happy starting right now." Just make yourself do it. Remember, moods have no ability to govern. Only you can do that. So just do it.

Use Logic to Succeed. If you are not a logical person (and many negatively moody people lean more toward the feeling side than the logical) you can use logic or reason to move yourself slowly from sad to happy. Make a numbered list for yourself. Begin with "I'm feeling down" and end with "I'm feeling uplifted." Now, fill in the gap. Take as many steps as you need in between the beginning and the end steps.

But what if you are in a happy, successful, moving-forward, joyful mood? Well, why change?

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