Understanding Our Mood With Reflective Questions

Understanding Our Mood With Reflective Questions

Understanding Our Mood With Reflective Questions

 

It was once said by Aristotle that “knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom”. As emotional beings, it may seem surprising when we can’t exactly describe how we feel. We might feel down one day, and happy the next, but still not be 100% sure why.

Learning about our emotions can help us better understand the changes in our well-being. This is often referred to as emotional intelligence. Being emotionally intelligent enables us to recognize emotions, describe them and understand their effects on ourselves.

Reflecting on our emotions can help us better understand why our moods change.

We can develop our emotional intelligence by asking ourselves questions that allow us to reflect on how we feel. These questions may help us better understand what we are feeling, and why we are feeling that way.

Thinking about today’s mood:
– What word would I use to describe my mood today?
– What are the reasons for my current mood today?
– Why do the reasons for my current mood make me feel this way?

Thinking about yesterday’s mood:
– What word would I use to describe my mood yesterday?
– What are the reasons for yesterday’s mood?
– Why do the reasons for yesterday’s mood make me feel that way?

Comparing yesterday’s mood to today’s mood:
– What was the difference between my actions yesterday and today?
– What was the main action I took which influenced my mood?

Thinking about tomorrow’s mood:
– What action can I take tomorrow that will positively affect my mood?
– If I were to take that action, what kind of emotions would I feel?
– If I were feeling positive tomorrow, what would it enable me to do during the day?

 

Written by Alejandro Serrano Saunders

Written by Alejandro Serrano Saunders

Alejandro is the Chief-Scientific Officer of uMore, the AI-powered mental well-being tracker.

Download the uMore app: http://atomic-temporary-180378686.wpcomstaging.com.link/

Impact Report: Fostering understanding with self-care

Impact Report: Fostering understanding with self-care

Impact report on uMore self-care activities

uMore launches the first collection of self-care activities designed to help users take action to improve their personal well-being. Each self-care activity is based on scientific evidence and helps foster health-promoting abilities.

October 2021

uMore launches self-care activities on iOS

uMore launches the first collection of self-care activities designed to help users take action to improve their personal well-being. Each self-care activity is based on scientific evidence and fosters health-promoting abilities.

Initial user feedback from the first self-care activities in-app has revealed that the activities have proved helpful to the user to identify stress, better understand how they feel, and manage their stress response. Overall, users who engage more frequently with activities are less prone to exhibit high-stress levels.

New activities will continue to be released on the uMore app, following the feedback from the activities featured in this paper.

How do the uMore self-care activities work?

The uMore self-care activities are designed to help users learn about their mental well-being, manage the effects of distress as it arises, and promote positive behaviors that are good for our health.

They are all based on real science and evidence from psychological research. There are activities based on mindfulness meditations, cognitive behavioral therapy, gratitude, relationship exercises, and many more!

Each one has a start and a finish, interactively asking meaningful questions throughout the activity. Every activity has a different goal in mind, helping users identify the health-promoting abilities that they want to strengthen.

Self-care is not a substitute for receiving help from a medical professional. uMore’s self-care activities can be used to learn more about and manage our mental health, but they are not a form of therapy. If you feel your mental health is in need of or could benefit from the help of a clinician, contact your local healthcare center today. The uMore app also features a database of telephone helplines to contact in the case of significant mental distress.

What Is Positive Psychology?

What Is Positive Psychology?

Tell Me About Positive Psychology

Have you ever wondered how you can lead a life with a positive mindset? How you can remain calm and grounded, away from the past or future, just being present in the ‘now’? 

Well, the field of Positive Psychology can help you find ways to enlighten you with a fresh perspective on life. 

Most of us have heard the term ‘Positive Psychology’, but what does it mean? Is it a scientific approach to well-being, or just a fallacy?

Positive Psychology (PP) is a scientific approach to understanding how one thinks, feels or behaves. It focuses on looking at positive subjective experiences and traits. By practising exercises based on PP, we can attempt to feel more positive, and more fulfilled.

 

Developing a positive mindset through PP can help us feel happier and more fulfilled.

Unlike Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), PP does not focus on your vulnerabilities or weaknesses. Rather, the focus is on your positive traits and characteristics that can make one’s life more meaningful. Isn’t that interesting?

What Are The 3 Elements of Positive Psychology?

PP focuses on 3 elements: 

  • Positive experiences (such as a trip, or spending time with your loved one).
  • Positive traits (such as love, honesty and gratitude).
  • Positive institutions (such as expressing positive feelings at your workplace or among family).

But what is the point of focusing on such elements?

Well, there is a huge misconception that one needs mental health support or seek help only when one is going through major distress. However, that is not the case. Why? We can always monitor our lifestyle and mental well-being.  We don’t always have to aim to look for ‘what is wrong, but sometimes we may wish to focus on ‘what is good’. When you focus on the 3 elements of PP, you will be able to perceive things and situations better, gain a positive mentality and earn life satisfaction.

What The Research Says About Positive Psychology

Numerous research studies have been conducted within this field, especially by the founder, Martin Slegiman. Some of the interesting exercises that you can apply in your lives to feel more positive emotions are:

  • Practising Gratitude. Gratitude is the factor that contributes to happiness the most, according to recent studies
  • Less focus on money, more satisfaction. These days we tend to work tirelessly, without considering our health, for the sake of money. This is because people consider money to be the major influence of happiness. Is this really true? PP studies suggest that spending money for your loved ones will improve your mood and generate happiness or joy.
  • There are many more ways that PP can change life for the better.

And guess what? When applying all these strategies at your home, workplace or any other organisations you interact with, you will spread the positive energy among others. Now that is a win-win situation!

Written by Alita Abraham

Written by Alita Abraham

Alita graduated from the University of Middlesex in Psychology and is a Psychology Intern at uMore, the AI-powered mental well-being tracker.

What does burnout feel like? And why do I always feel exhausted after work?

What does burnout feel like? And why do I always feel exhausted after work?

Why Do I Always Feel Exhausted After Work?

Burnout in the workplace is at an all-time high, especially during these tough times with the pandemic. You may feel drained of energy at your workplace, home and even during the weekends! It may seem that there is always work that needs to be done, and as a result, you end up putting things off for later. This initiates a vicious cycle where new tasks keep piling above the old ones, but there isn’t enough time or energy to meet the deadlines.

Burnout can lead to decreases in enjoyment and motivation.

That’s when you lose interest, in your work, at home and even in socializing with people. You may begin to feel that your work goes unseen. This can eventually lead to withdrawal from all situations that require you to put in any amount of energy, including self-care, and hence, contributing to mental health concerns such as anxiety and depression. Additionally, burned-out individuals are at a higher risk of developing chronic disorders such as diabetes, heart disease, gastro-intestinal and respiratory problems in the future.

Sounds harsh, right?

The Importance of Taking Care of Ourselves

Well, that is how burnout has shown to impact personal lives of overworked individuals. Hence, it is important to recognize when these symptoms start to appear and take necessary actions to manage them. Here are some examples to get you started:

  • Communicate with your manager about how you feel, to come to a mutual solution
  • Re-evaluate your boundaries and priorities (finances, family responsibilities)
  • Confide in friends and family – one of the best ways to help with burnout symptoms, as proven by research
  • Indulge in self-care – take time off from everything to do what YOU find relaxing and enjoyable.
Written by Nisha Sheikh
Written by Nisha Sheikh

Nisha has a M.S. in Clinical Psychology from Kingston University, and is a Psychology Intern at uMore, the AI-powered mental well-being tracker.

Practice autogenic training, helping you become more centered.

Practice autogenic training, helping you become more centered.

Have you ever felt so stressed that you can feel tension restricting your body, tightening your muscles, or quickening your breath?

It is quite common for stress and anxiety to manifest itself in our bodies, but there are relaxing and helpful ways to recenter yourself and restore a feeling of calm. In this exercise, we will practice autogenic training, helping you become more centered. It will also facilitate a positive inner dialogue with yourself, allowing your body to become more relaxed.

Settle yourself into a comfortable position. This can be standing up, sitting, or laying down. Take three deep breaths through your diaphragm…and gently shut your eyes. Now, quietly say to yourself, “I am completely calm and relaxed.”

Bring your attention to your left arm. Quietly and slowly say to yourself three times, “my left arm is very heavy.” Feel its weight. Then quietly say to yourself, “I am completely calm and relaxed.” Next, bring your attention to your right arm. Quietly and slowly say to yourself three times, “my right arm is very heavy.” Feel its weight. Then quietly say to yourself, “I am completely calm and relaxed.” Now notice both of your arms together. Slowly say to yourself three times, “my arms are feeling warm.” Now quietly repeat, “I am completely calm and relaxed.”

calm

 

 

 

Take some time to recenter yourself.

Feel the warmth extend down into your hands. Slowly say to yourself three times, “my hands are feeling warm.” Feel the warmth move all the way outwards into your fingertips. Now quietly repeat, “I am completely calm and relaxed.”

Bring your attention to your left leg. Quietly and slowly say to yourself three times, “my left leg is very heavy.” Feel its weight. Then quietly say to yourself, “I am completely calm and relaxed.” Next, bring your attention to your right leg. Quietly and slowly say to yourself three times, “my right leg is very heavy.” Feel its weight. Then quietly say to yourself, “I am completely calm and relaxed.” Now notice both of your legs together. Slowly say to yourself three times, “my legs are feeling warm.” Now quietly repeat, “I am completely calm and relaxed.”

Feel the warmth extend down into your feet. Slowly say to yourself three times, “my feet are feeling warm.” Feel the warmth move all the way outwards into your toes. Now quietly vocalize “I am completely calm and relaxed.”

Focus on your chest. Feel it stay still as you breathe through the belly. Slowly say to yourself three times, “my heartbeat is calm and regular.” Then quietly repeat to yourself, “I am completely calm and relaxed.” Quietly and slowly say to yourself three times, “my breaths are steady and calm.” Then quietly say to yourself, “I am completely calm and relaxed.”

Quietly and slowly vocalize to yourself three times, “my abdomen is warm.” Then quietly say to yourself,” I am completely calm and relaxed.” Quietly and slowly say to yourself three times, “my forehead is nice and cool.”

Then quietly say to yourself, “I am completely calm and relaxed.” Find peace in this sensation of relaxation, weightlessness, and warmth. Whenever you feel ready, quietly say to yourself, “I am completely calm and relaxed.” Open your eyes.

When relationship, school, career, or family stress is creeping its way into your physical and emotional state, please feel free to return to this exercise to restore yourself and your feeling of calm.

Written by Alejandro Serrano Saunders

Written by Alejandro Serrano Saunders

Alejandro is the Chief-Scientific Officer of uMore, the AI-powered mental well-being tracker.

Download the uMore App: http://atomic-temporary-180378686.wpcomstaging.com.link/

Did you know we we tend to talk to ourselves throughout every day!

Did you know we we tend to talk to ourselves throughout every day!

It is quite common to maintain an inner dialogue with ourselves throughout any given day. Have you experienced this? Have there been times where your inner dialogue lifts you up and others where it drags you down? We call this self-talk.

Without realizing it, we tend to have an ongoing conversation with ourselves throughout every day. This self-talk can sometimes manifest positively and at other times, negatively. When we cook a delicious dish, we might think to ourselves “I made a great tasting meal,” which is a form of positive self-talk. However, sometimes the self-talk takes shape as something more pessimistic. If we commit an error at work, we may think “I am so useless,” which is a form of negative self-talk.

contemplating

 

Take some time to reflect on your self talk.

We have multiple self-talk moments every day, sometimes subconsciously. It also may be hard to realize the impact that negative self-talk can have on our stress levels. If our self-talk tends to be negative, the world around us may seem more stressful and threatening. This way, we may start focusing on the problems we face more frequently than the gifts that we have, which can cause unnecessary stress.

Written by Alejandro Serrano Saunders

Written by Alejandro Serrano Saunders

Alejandro is the Chief-Scientific Officer of uMore, the AI-powered mental well-being tracker.

Download the uMore app: http://atomic-temporary-180378686.wpcomstaging.com.link/