Dip in your mood? This is the best remedy!

January 16, 2022 / Topical / Background

Such a Blue Monday can affect your mood. In any case, you can experience fluctuations in mood during your break period. How come? The answer is simple: you are not rejoicing enough. huh?

You may experience the fact that participating in IkPas, after the first euphoria has passed, is not just hosanna, on this Blue Monday. One consolation, you are not alone. Of all the participants in IkPas, many people experience a dip in their mood from time to time. Your disrupted reward system is an important cause of this. Because whether you are a heavy or moderate drinker; in everyone who regularly drinks, there is a strong link in the brain between drinking alcohol and the expectation of relaxation.

This association is so strongly anchored in your brain's reward system that you wake up consciously or unconsciously in the morning with the idea: there will be no reward tonight. This thought is reinforced at times when you are stressed or very busy. So it's no wonder your mood picks up: you simply don't have that moment of relaxation that you can look forward to during the day. It's high time to soften that feeling of loss a bit!

The Power of Rejoicing

Psychologist and psychotherapist Carien Karsten explains how to break through this 'expectation of relaxation'. Carien: “Breaking this pattern starts with replacing your regular ritual (such as a glass of wine with dinner or beer in front of the television) with a new ritual. When I stopped having my regular wine in the evening, I opted for an ice cream instead. So I created a new relaxation ritual. This still works. However, replacing my wine alone was not enough to keep my mood up during the day. I was missing something to look forward to. By consciously planning fun things, new moments arose to look forward to. And that definitely lifted my mood.”

List of 50 fun things

Carien's tip: “Realize that your brain has to get used to the loss of a fixed 'moment of joy' during your break period. Therefore, try to condition yourself into looking forward to other things that make you happy. Think of simple things, such as a fresh bouquet of flowers, good food, a good book or a nice movie. So every time you think 'I'm not going to drink anything tonight', you can say to yourself 'but I will spoil myself with a beautiful bunch of flowers, a nice dinner, etc'. By the way, don't expect the new reward to completely replace your regular glass of wine. It does make your challenge a bit easier and more fun.

Do you prefer to spend the rest of your challenge in a good mood? Then make a list of 50 fun things you are going to do. And spoil yourself with little things that make you happy. Your excuse? You don't do it for yourself, but especially for the people around you; )

 

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