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The global pandemic. People losing their jobs. The struggle for justice. These things have an impact on our day-to-day lives, and they are mostly out of our control.


Similarly, how our friends act, what someone posts about us online, or how someone around you acts is all out of our control as well.


What we have in our control is how we respond to an event, situation, or behavior. Only our actions are in our control.


To put it another way: if you can’t change your situation, you have to change how you respond to it.


That is easier said than done. Here are three ways to take control of the things you can control:


1) Get active. Even if you are not a big fitness person, you can get moving. Go for a walk. Lift some weights. Do some stretches. Anything that gets the blood pumping can boost your mood a bit, so get moving.


2) Be generous. People need help right now more than ever. We are dealing with one crisis after another. Pick a cause and volunteer—stuff envelopes. Circulate a petition. Run an errand for your elderly neighbor. Watch over a neighbor’s child so they can work.


3) Be grateful. Make a list of three things you are thankful for each morning. Try to mix it up, so you are not repeating the same things. Really feel gratitude for the things that you are writing out.


Find a way to change how you deal with stressful situations and watch your mood change with it.

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Want to learn more to improve your mood and cope with difficult situations?
Participate in a free, voluntary research study called Path 2 Purpose (P2P).

Contact the P2P Study Team at 1-877-268-PATH

If you are If you’re thinking about suicide, are worried about a friend or loved one, or would like emotional support, the Lifeline network is available 24/7 across the United States.  The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline toll-free number, 1-800-273-TALK (8255) connects the caller to a certified crisis center near where the call is placed.