How to be in a better mood is a question people asked and answered countless times. Everyone wants to be happy, but life, work and simply the daily routine get in our way. Luckily thanks to all the happiness research there are quick and simple ways to improve your mood instantly.

By utilizing simple “brain hacks”, we can make ourselves feel better. You are basically using an existing brain mechanism to trick your body into thinking you are happy, which in turn will make you happier. Awesome, isn’t it?

You can use those tips anytime during the day. For some, you might want to be alone. Or not, if you are interested in sharing your wisdom.

Related: 75 simple self-care ideas for a happy, balanced life
Related: 31 ideas on how to make someone happy in their love language

Disclosure: Some of the links below are so-called provision links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

1. Boost your mood by visualizing a “BPS”

“BPS” stands for “best possible self”. And it is exactly what it sounds like. For a BPS exercise, you imagine yourself in a future where everything has turned out the best way possible.

First, take some time to sit down and really imagine all the details. How would your life be if everything was exactly how you always wanted it to be? Which things have you achieved? What are your skills and abilities? (Imagine those being perfected!)

Ideally, you take 10 minutes for this and write everything down. Don’t bother with grammar or punctuation, just let it flow.

For the biggest benefit, do this exercise regularly, even daily. Research shows that this exercise is incredibly effective in “increasing and sustaining positive emotion“.

Want to learn how to apply the science of happiness to your life? Check out this course on The Power of Happiness*! Behavioral investigator Vanessa Van Edwards teaches you her scientifically backed framework for happiness.

2. How to be in a better mood by simply smiling

Okay, this one is old. But no one uses it nearly enough! Myself included. By simply smiling a big smile for at least 60 seconds, you can easily lift your mood.

It does have to be a wide smile for this to work though. If necessary, hold a pencil between your teeth and make a point of not touching it with your lips. Can you do that now, just to try it?

How to be in a better mood: Smiling with a pencil between the teeth

By holding a wide grin, you press one of your face muscles onto a nerve. And when you do that for at least one minute your brain registers “Oh! She’s happy! I’m gonna produce some happy hormones to go with that!”

3. How to be in a better mood by drinking water

Everyone and their mom keeps telling you to drink more water, I know. What can I say? They are right. And I will tell you the same now.

How to be in a better mood: Drinking a big glass of water

Researchers found that even mild dehydration can already negatively impact your mood. So if you are feeling a little sluggish or low for “no reason”, go grab one or two glasses of water!

4. Boost your mood by searching for gratitude

Yes, searching for gratitude. You know what it feels like when you want to be grateful, but you can’t think of anything, because you are in such a foul mood, right? When positive affirmations just make you angrier?

The good news: You will benefit from thinking about what you are grateful for, even if you come up empty handed!

Simply by thinking about what you could be grateful for increases serotonin production in your brain. And not only that, by doing this exercise regularly, it will actually get easier. Searching for gratitude increases neuron density in both the ventromedial and lateral prefrontal cortex. Meaning your neurons will get more efficient at finding gratitude for you!

I don’t know about you, but I tried some of these tips while I went along and I am in a much better mood already! Did it do the same for you? Let me know in the comments and make sure to share these tips with someone else!

Do you wonder how to be in a better mood? These 4 brain hacks will help you feel better instantly. Try them!

*These links are so-called provision links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I can earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.