Health: Life Hacks – Pump It Up!
As we hacked before, exercise is crucial for your mental wellbeing, but what exercise?
While running does seem to tick a lot of boxes in terms of overall fitness and mental benefits, there are some further hacks that could make you feel better overall.
What you do in an exercise class informs how you feel about classes. People who take part in a class where they act happy feel better and happier for longer afterwards. How many classes have you attended where people grimaced their way through a circuit or pose, leaving you wondering why you didn’t feel that uplifted afterwards?
Try a dance class which makes you act like you’re happy during the exercise. Dr. Peter Lovatt’s work on the effects of dance on mood are a striking endorsement for dance as an activity that makes us happy and keeps us so. Don’t worry if you have two left feet; a simple, repetitive step and some confidence is all that’s needed to get you moving. Try Tango, Swing, Zumba or Hip-Hop to get the endorphins going for you.
While you’re at it, pump up the jam! While you may find endless ballads ‘lovely’, they’re not necessarily helping you feel good. Listening to music may seem a passive activity, but it acts to inform and enhance our mood. Listening to talk radio may be informative, but if you want to feel better, then you need to put on some music.
Up-tempo music mirrors the emotions associated with happiness, so even listening to something upbeat can make you feel better. Consider the last time you sang in the shower. Were you happy then? Chances are, you sing, dance and enjoy life more when you’re in a good mood; remember the last time a song you love came on the radio and how you reacted? You have the power to do that WHENEVER YOU WANT.
Sometimes, we simply forget that music is there, waiting for us, wanting to make us happy. So instead of listening to more bad news, put on a mixtape and feel the mood lift. Singing along gives you even more positive vibes, so consider a small radio in the bathroom to get you in the mood to start the day happy (and stay that way).