10 Things to do online to brighten your mood

Entangled in The Web, you can find some of the most inspirational, awe-striking and funny sites. Just what you need when you are having one of those gloomy days. Filtered just for you are my top 10 things to do online on such days:

1. Put things into perspective

At times it feels like our problems are out of this world. When this happens, sometimes it is helpful to take a step back and change our stand point. To help us realise how small our lives are (let alone our problems), there are several websites which eloquently show the greatness of the universe. Check out this scale, this scale and this timeline for a realisation that our existence in itself is a wonder and that most of problems are not worth our distress after all.

2. ‘Awh’

I will allow this one cliché because nothing warms the heart like photos and videos of baby animals. Visit one of the many websites that have a deadly dose of cuteness especially compiled; Cute Overload and Zoo Borns to name a few. Baby penguins, polar bears or hamsters may cause your heart to swell and forget all about the life-hitches you are encountering. However, it is not only furry creatures that steal hearts. I challenge you to google baby salamanders, octopi or crocodiles and you will be amazed how the miniature version of animals which normally cause fear and disgust in some of us, can makes us feel all fuzzy inside. Caution: this may or may not work in the case of insects and other invertebrates!

3. Create your aura

When you need to mull over your sorrows, embrace the solitude or find a peaceful place I recommend that you cocoon yourself in the soothing sounds of rainfall. Rainymood offers you this. Rain does not do the trick? Try ocean sounds or bird whistling amongst others on A Soft Murmur. If you are looking for a more bustling atmosphere and coffee shops are your usual getaway (but not even a screeching dinosaur could get you out of your pyjamas and your current steel-melting glare would surely be of public concern) Coffitivity is just for you.

4. Switch off …

Not your device. Your thoughts! We live in a world where we are constantly faced by newsfeeds, timelines, boards and what not. We live in a world where we can use websites to help us Calm down and Do nothing for 2 minutes. Whether you think that using technology for meditation is cheating, clever or simply a con, these sites are worth a visit. At least for personal curiosity.

5. … or go idle

While meaning no disrespect to sloths, I call this the sloth mode. The sloth mode, as defined here and now, is when you let your mind wander with things that do not bother you, which require little thought and which put what is weighing you down in the background. There are plenty of online pages that have the sole purpose to occupy your mind with their content. Why not drift off to space while painting a nebula or unwind by weaving silk?

6. Watch people be happy

We all remember the song Happyby Pharrell. The ingenious part, to me, is the 24-hour music video of people doing their happy dance! There is something about the happiness that these people are radiating that is contagious. Tip: close the doors, windows and curtains and have a moment of uninhibited dance so as to be part of this happy revolution.

7. Play that funky music

Put your records on, open your favourite playlist or find the one that suits your mood on 8track and let it be. Lie down and close your eyes or just get your foot loose. In any case all your troubles will seem to be far away.

8. Open the door to Wastetimelandia.

Reddit, 9gag ... The list goes on and on. If you could use a laugh or two, look for specific sub-reddits or rummage through videos of cats who you could swear are drunk, people who seem to be a blunder in the evolution of humankind and chain of events that defy statistics and probability. Be careful though. Quoting Pringles: ‘once you pop you can’t stop’.

9. Meet TED

Marinate your sadness in knowledge. If you need to account for the day, itch to understand how our mind works, need motivation to get out of bed, or simply want to learn and grow, I urge you to listen to TED talks. These are short influential videos from professionals in the areas of education, business, science, technology and creativity. I probably should have marked the day I discovered TED as a life event on my Facebook timeline. Give it a go. TED is ready to impress you too.

10. Fast forward time

There is something about time-lapse videos that is mesmerising. It may be the surreal feeling that the fast-forwarded version of our lives seems to be more incredible than every individual lived-out moment. Or maybe it is the lucid illustration of life as a journey. I invite you to google time-lapse videos of your country or favourite spots in the world and be prepared to be blown away.

Bonus: Having said all this, my ultimate suggestion to brighten your day is to go get some fresh air and watch the sun set. Nothing beats that!

Author: Stella Arthur