SENIOR SPOTLIGHT: All-natural mood boosters

Maureen Wendt

We all strive for happiness, something that has been valued for centuries. Maintaining a positive mood can sometimes be challenging, especially in a fast-paced, must-get-everything-done environment or what we have going on right now with the COVID-19 state of emergency. So, some natural mood boosters that are known to work are the topic of this week's article.

Gratitude: Genuinely try to feel grateful. It can bring more meaning and purpose to your life. Looking at the bright side of life and feeling appreciation for the little things are great ways to feel better. Remember to say "thank you" for all the little things in your life today.

Exercise: Physical and psychological wellbeing are connected. When your body feels good, so does your mind. Physical exercise releases the "happy hormones."

Smile: Research shows that if we force ourselves to smile, after a while we do start feeling better. And, it will work both ways. Smiling at somebody may just brighten their day — and receiving a smile may brighten your day. So, smile today!

Vitamin D: New research shows that sufficient amounts of vitamin D reduce the chances of developing depression. Our bodies need sunlight to generate vitamin D. The weather forecast for the coming week will offer the perfect opportunity to get outside, take a walk and spend some time in the sun. Take advantage of every sunny day.

Socialization: Happiness is getting out and being with people, and that's why I recommend it. Remember to honor the social distancing mandate of 6 feet.

When it comes to managing our moods, we really do have the power to take control. Have a bright day.

Maureen A. Wendt is president and CEO of The Dale Association, a non-profit organization that provides senior, mental health, in-home care, caregiver support services and enrichment activities for adults. For more information, call 433-1937 or visit www.daleassociation.com .

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