Mood Enhancement Tips
Depressed, anxious and angry moods are often cues for many impulsive dysfunctional behaviors. For this reason, managing moods can reduce the likelihood of many dysfunctional behaviors.
- Understanding the importance of pleasant events
Pleasant events and activities have a strong impact on your mood. If the number of enjoyable activities falls below a critical level, mood becomes depressed. Pleasant activities can also be “self-nurturing” and serve as a substitute for dysfunctional behavior. It’s important to keep a balance between pleasant activities and neutral or unpleasant events.
- Increasing pleasant events
You can learn to enhance your mood by maintaining a balance between pleasant and unpleasant activities. You can use pleasant activities as rewards for reaching your goals. However, pleasurable activities are important to schedule regularly for their own sake, aside from their value as rewards. The following four steps can help you increase the pleasant activities you experience as reward:
- Set goals.
No goal is too small.
Don’t choose too large a goal because you may set yourself up for failure.
You can always change your goals to make them more realistic and attainable.
- Select rewards for reaching your goals.
Rewards should be things that make you feel good and are available (within your control).
Rewards should be powerful.
Rewards work best when they are immediately available.
Identify a menu of 10 rewards of different strengths.
- Make a contract.
Make a specific written agreement to reward yourself if you accomplish your goal.
- Plan ahead.
Schedule your pleasant events on a weekly basis, or
Schedule your pleasant events a day in advance.
Don’t let yourself back out or make excuses.
Designate the time and place.
Make a commitment with another person to help you stick to your contract.
Anticipate problems and try to prevent them from interrupting your pleasant event.
- Set goals.
Don’t forget to increase pleasant activities by scheduling then for their own sake, not just as rewards. For example:
- Schedule time to relax
- Schedule time to read the newspaper and magazines.
- Schedule time for a walk in the neighborhood.