If your day’s off to a bad start, try one of these instant pick-me-ups to turn things around

1. Practise positivity

It might sound strange to repeat positive and meaningful phrases over and over (such as ‘I’ve got this’ and ‘I trust my inner wisdom’), but affirmations can make a big difference to how we feel.

According to American researchers Cohen and Sherman, using affirmations can be a powerful way to reduce stress, increase wellbeing and make people more open to behaviour change. Why not try it and see?

2. Dress best

A new outfit can completely change your outlook, so put the wow back in your wardrobe with a visit to re:love. The rails of Barnstaple’s premier dress agency are bursting with beautiful pre-loved clothes, ready to make your day.

A friendly and experienced team of trained stylists, seamstresses and fashion connoisseurs are on hand to offer advice and make the shopping experience a pleasurable one. The shop also hosts regular crafting sessions and make up tutorials.

Visit re:love at 39-40 Boutport Street for a browse or follow them on Instagram for inspiration.

3. Get creative

Channelling your energy into a creative activity such as sketching, painting or sculpting can be immensely soothing, satisfying and uplifting.

Need creative inspiration? Take part in an art class such as Hester Berry’s drop-in portrait sessions at White Moose gallery, Barnstaple every Tuesday from 2 – 4pm. Or visit a studio during the annual Art Trek Open Studios event from Friday 13th – Sunday 29th September 2019.

Find out more here.

4. Banish aches and pains

Get moving to feel energised and uplifted. But, rather than hitting the gym, why not try something different? Somatic Movement Education is all about relaxing, releasing and allowing your body to move gently with inherent ease.

Offered by Debbie West Pilates, based in Barnstaple, it’s great for stress relief and ideal if you suffer from chronically tight muscles.

5. Play a favourite album

Music is a wonderful mood enhancer. Don’t suffer in silence if you’re having a bad day; put on an album that always makes you smile and indulge in happy memories.

Discovering new music can also be a great way to lift your spirits. Seek out an upbeat playlist on a music streaming service such as Spotify, or find out about local gigs and enjoy the buzzing atmosphere of live music.

6. Take a walk in the wild

The simple act of walking is a good stress reliever: it releases endorphins, gives you a break and takes you away from stressors. And studies have found that walking in a natural environment has better effects than walking in an urban setting.

Head to the beach, walk in the woods or explore the countryside. Get out in the fresh air and enjoy the elements, even if it’s the last thing you feel like doing. You’ll be amazed by the difference it makes to your mood.

www.southwestcoastpath.org.uk