The Top 5 Ways to Change Your Mood
6 BASIC MOODS OF LIFE
In ontology, there are 6 core moods. Resentment, acceptance, resignation, ambition, anxiety and wonder/curiosity. A mood is a long-term experience, it can be the umbrella over how you show up in life, and sometimes it can be useful to change your mood. We may not be aware of the current mood we are living in, but it is always there behind what we do. This is different from our emotions. Emotions are short-term, they are a response to a specific context, and we can move in and out of multiple emotions in a short space of time. For example, I could lose my dog, I could feel emotions of worry and sadness as I frantically search for him, an hour later I could receive a knock at my door and a kind stranger has found and returned my dog, in an instant my panic has shifted to different emotions such as, gratitude, relief, and joy.
On the other hand, a mood influences my entire life over what could be months or even years. For example, I could be living in a mood of resentment because I feel discriminated against. Maybe I feel like I never get any job I apply for because I am a woman, or perhaps I feel like people act nervously around me because of the colour of my skin, so I am experiencing a deep resentment because of prejudice, which influences everything I do. It may mean I walk around with my head down and avoid eye contact and communication. I might feel angry because I feel judged and avoid social events, opting to spend my time at home alone, where I am safe. These are examples of living in the mood of resentment, and they can be deeply detrimental. Moods can reveal a particular type of world for us, it’s like the idea of a world where you either see the glass as half empty or half full. What do you see?
Whilst this blog post focuses specifically on resentment and acceptance, the top 5 ways to change your mood can be applied to other moods.
WHAT IS ACCEPTANCE?
The opposite of resentment is acceptance. This is a more useful mood and one I encourage people to shift into in my coaching practice. Acceptance is one of the core moods in ontology, described by Alan Sieler from Newfield Institute as “when we are able to accept facticities – coming to terms with what we cannot change. It allows us to be at peace with what has happened”. What is facticity? Facticity is the idea of “what is so”. It is what is unchangeable, as opposed to different possibilities. Acceptance supports this when you are in a mood of acceptance you accept what is, and what cannot be changed.
According to the book The Unopened Gift by Dan Newby and Lucy Núñez the root of acceptance is “to take what is offered or to receive it willingly”, with the story “I acknowledge that life is as it is even though I may not agree, endorse, or like it.” The human concern is “the ability to align with the facts of life around us, to rest in serenity and peace.”
In my experience of acceptance, I interpret it personally as being at peace with life exactly as it is and feeling content irrespective of my external circumstances. I have experienced it both as an emotion and a mood. I also feel a strong connection to focusing on self-acceptance. Consciously bringing awareness to my negative self-assessments and enemies of learning, such as I am not good enough and proactively declaring a new more self-accepting reality. I feel the path to self-acceptance can at times be challenging, believing our declarations is not always immediate, so I find myself centering and dropping into my body. When I sit with my spine straight, feet grounded, and focus on deep belly breaths I notice peaceful feelings start to rise and acceptance fills my way of being. What is your experience of acceptance?
TOWARDS A MOOD OF ACCEPTANCE
Shifting to a mood of acceptance can be a playful space. I invite you to explore it with curiosity.
Whilst a mood of resentment may hold the judgments that you have been unfairly treated and do not deserve this a mood of acceptance will accept that it is how it is. It is a shift from wanting to seek payback (which could include self-punishment) to feeling flexible and opening up to looking at a range of possibilities.
I want to highlight something if you have been experiencing a mood of resentment do not beat yourself up. It is not useful to tell yourself what you should be doing. Feeling upset because you don’t know how to shift from one mood to the other, or because you feel like a failure for being in a seemingly negative mood is not useful. Be gentle with yourself, honor where you are at, and acknowledge yourself for bringing awareness to your current mood – so many people don’t ever get to this point.
THE TOP 5 WAYS TO CHANGE YOUR MOOD
1. ALLOWING THE MOOD
Allow the mood of resentment to be present, avoid trying to squash it down, instead witness it. Ask yourself these questions:
What is this mood protecting me from?
What purpose is it serving me?
How is it taking care of me?
Why does it make sense for me to be in this mood?
Allow the answers to flow, you could journal on this, and your answers could provide a revelation about a concern of yours that is not being taken care of. Maybe you realise your key concern is that you feel like your partner never helps out with the kids, and he goes out with his mates every week, and you just want a few hours off too.
2. EXPLORING YOUR ASSESSMENTS
From here you can look at your language, what assessments are you making about this mood? Assessments are our self-created stories about our experience of the world. For more about assessments and how to release them, you can check out this blog post.
Consider how effective living in this mood is for you? Is it really useful? Do you want to change your mood?
Download the exact process I use to shift my assessments by clicking the image below.
3. EFFECTIVE CONVERSATIONS
Maybe you need to have a conversation with someone about an issue that has been left unsaid.
What have you been holding onto without sharing?
What would happen if you put your voice to this?
What requests have you not made?
What requests could be useful here?
Is a conversation a possibility?
4. MOODS AND THE WISDOM OF YOUR BODY
Get curious about where resentment sits in your body, close your eyes and feel its presence, is it in your chest, your throat, how is it affecting your posture? Now do the same thing with acceptance. Can you playfully shift between the two? Do you notice the difference between how you experience them in your body?
5. MUSIC AND MOODS
Another fun way of shifting from a mood of resentment to acceptance can be through music. What music do you imagine the mood of resentment to be? Consider the pace, tone, volume, pitch. Compare this to the music of acceptance. Find songs that reflect your mood of resentment and acceptance. Play them both and dance to each one in your interpretation of that mood. Start with resentment, and end with acceptance. What do you notice? Did you feel a change in your mood?
Resentment can be a mood of great suffering. It can cause a lot of pain, and in my experience, it can leave you feeling hopeless. Resentment lives in the past so leaving the past behind will help you shift towards a mood of acceptance. If you would like support with this, book your free Discovery call with me to see if we are a good fit. I can help you release resentment and shift to a mood of acceptance. Book your call now, or check out my offerings here.
Let’s get the conversation going? What have you noticed about your current mood? What has been useful for you to change your mood towards one of acceptance? Comment below.