Treating Mood and Stress - Fight or FlightReducing stress and improving mood is a lifelong task. It requires re-wiring parts of the brain in the amygdala. This "fight or fight" response usually causes people much heartache because they are unable to discern real threats (a lion) versus false threats (an attractive woman).A great way to start improving your general mood levels and reduce stress is to use meditation. Even though it may seem difficult or woo-woo, there is actually a lot of science about the benefits of meditation. But here is the problem...Meditation takes a while to show serious mood improvement benefits.If you are trying to take a major exam or you have deadlines at work, then meditation will not be useful for you in the short term. At least, it will not be useful enough to make a real lasting difference in your mood levels for near term exams and mental challenges.There are ways to treat a poor mood with nootropics that are more effective and work quicker. While we advocate using meditation as a stress reduction technique, you should consider these nootropics for a short term fix.
Natural Stress and Mood ReliefL-Theanine - It seems like whether you need to increase focus or improve mood, L-Theanine is a great way to do so. However, when you are trying to improve concentration it is a good idea to combine L-Theanine with caffeine. In an attempt to reduce feeling of worry, sometimes it is best to avoid caffeine and take L-Theanine by itself.According to a 2006 study in Biological Psychology, L-Theanine can "...cause anti-stress effects via the inhibition of cortical neuron excitation." In addition, L-Theanine can improve alpha brain waves which are associated with the rest and relaxation state within the brain. Often, the alpha brain state allows for the best performance.Bacopa Monnieri - This is an ancient herb used in India for thousands of years. It is part of the Ayurvedic tradition of medicine and has numerous health effects, which are still used today. Small villages in India use bacopa monnieri and ghee as a way of improving schooling and learning ability.The expansive supplement information site, Examine.com, specifically attributes bacopa's ability to improve cognition and performance to stress reduction: "...has been shown to improve cognition, by means of
Mood Boosting Techniques & NootropicsThere are several ways people deal with mood and stress, but often they are not productive and certainly don't improve mental performance. When trying to treat mood and stress, it's important to tackle the problem with a two-sided attack.
- Long term techniques - The longer term techniques include meditation, but many more as well. Try to find physical exertion that you find fun and enjoyable. The exercise will balance your brain chemicals and offer some advantages for your mood and improving your response to stress. Also, eating a diet that is free from too much sugar will make a big difference for your overall health.
- Short term supplementation - In addition to your long term techniques to reduce your general stress levels, nootropics can be a great tool. Any mood treatment that does not involve prescriptions is a good thing.