How to act happy when you want to cry

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), depression is a pretty common thing, affecting a whopping 280 million people.¹ But even if you’re not diagnosed with it, we all have our fair share of crummy days when a little positivity can work wonders. Stay glued to this post to learn how to act happy when you want to cry.

Feeling happy vibes right now? Get ready to boost your mood

A lot of us buy into the idea that we need that dream job or the latest shiny purchase to experience true bliss. But guess what? We’re about to drop some truth bombs on you. You don’t need any of that stuff to be happy. Happiness is a choice and up to you whether you want to be happy when you want to cry or let the negative ones drag you down.


Happiness is also a frickin’ habit. You have to put in the work every single day. Incorporating things like gratitude, exercise, and meditation into your daily routine can seriously level up your happiness game.

Making these changes might seem a bit daunting. But it’s never too late to start on the path to happiness. The first step is realizing that you want to make a change.


Can you be both sad and happy at the same time?

We’re not talking about slapping on a fake smile to hide your pain. Instead, suppose your little munchkin is about to embark on their first day of school. And boy, oh boy, do you have a whirlwind of emotions brewing inside you. On one hand, you’re bursting with happiness, seeing them take this big step towards independence. But on the other hand, there’s a twinge of sadness tugging at your heartstrings, making you wonder how they grew up so fast.

See, that’s what we mean by mixed emotions. So, don’t fret if you find yourself amid conflicting emotions. It’s all part of life. Embrace the messiness, embrace the complexity, and remember that it’s perfectly normal to have a whole range of feelings swirling around inside you.

The right time to ask for help if you’re feeling down

Feeling down doesn’t make you weak, so don’t be ashamed of seeking professional assistance when you need it. The first step is acknowledging and accepting your emotions. Once you’ve done that, collaborate with others to find the best treatment for your mental well-being.

Now, let’s go over a few signs that indicate it’s time to reach out. If you’ve been experiencing these signs for more than two weeks, you should seek professional help.


1. When everything feels lost

Ever caught yourself thinking, “It’s all my fault” or “I’ll never find happiness”? These hopeless thoughts can lead to a sense of helplessness and make you feel like giving up.

2. When your passion fades

Sadness often drains the joy and pleasure out of activities you used to love. If you’ve lost interest in things that once brought you happiness—like hanging out with friends, exercising, or pursuing your hobbies—it might be a sign of depression.

3. Drained and exhausted

Confronting Fatigue and Sleep Issues? Struggling to get out of bed and feeling constantly fatigued can be red flags. Depression can disrupt your sleep patterns, leading to difficulties either falling asleep or sleeping excessively.

4.  Anxiety and nervousness

While depression and anxiety are distinct, they can frequently coexist. Anxiety may manifest as nervousness, rapid heart rate, shallow breathing, trembling, and trouble focusing. You might find yourself constantly anticipating negative outcomes.

5. Taming irritability

Feeling overwhelmed by socializing, snapping at people more frequently, and being easily annoyed or agitated are common signs. Pay attention if you’re constantly irritable for no particular reason.

6. Confronting dark thoughts

If you’re having thoughts of harming yourself, it’s vital to seek help immediately. You can reach out to professionals to talk to you.

How to act happy when you want to cry

You need to equip yourself with some strategies to discover that sweet spot of happiness. Besides, no one wants to be stuck in sadness for too long. That said, below are some epic ways to act happy when you want to cry.

1. Redirect your focus to others

When you lend a helping hand, something magical happens. Your brain goes into overdrive, releasing delightful happy chemicals that make us feel on top of the world. Not only that but acts of kindness give us a deep sense of self-worth and satisfaction. So, spread the love, ignite the kindness revolution, and watch as happiness takes center stage.

a. Find meaning in helping others

The satisfaction you feel comes from knowing you’re making a difference, especially when you extend that helping hand to those who are less fortunate than us.

b. It causes a bonding effect

By assisting others, we tap into something greater than ourselves. It’s like being part of a team, a movement, or a community—a feeling that fills our souls and adds depth to our existence.

c. Flipping the lens

Helping others has a magical way of putting our own challenges into perspective. Suddenly, your problems don’t seem as insurmountable, and a renewed sense of optimism seeps in.

2. Open up about your struggles

Don’t hesitate to reach out to those you trust—be it a family member, close friend, counselor, or even a life coach. Let them in on what’s happening in your world. Consider joining a social support group. Surround yourself with folks who can relate to what you’re going through, that can be a game-changer. Also, share experiences, empathize, and learn from one another to generate an incredible source of strength.

3. Unearth new ways to laugh and lighten up

Laughter is, without a doubt, the ultimate medicine. You could dive into a funny movie, immerse yourself in the pages of a hilarious book, or better yet, gather with those delightful friends who have a knack for making you laugh.

Once those giggles kick in, you’ll be able to act happy when you want to cry and those troubles will fade into the background. Get ready for a serious mood boost and bring back that ear-to-ear grin.

4. Embrace the power of sunshine

Low levels of this sunshine vitamin can cast a shadow on your well-being. But fear not, for there’s a simple and enjoyable solution: basking in the sun. Try to spend quality time in the sun to rejuvenate your body. As those Vitamin D levels rise, prepare to be infused with a fresh wave of happiness and energy. Just a mere 10 to 15 minutes of sun exposure each day can work wonders. So, don’t miss out on the radiant benefits of sunshine. Step outside, embrace the warmth and let the sun work its magic on your mood.

5. Refuel your body with healthy choices

Indulging in some guilty pleasures is part of the fun. However, relying solely on them can leave your body feeling less than nourished, leading to fatigue or even illness. What’s the deal? A well-balanced diet is key. It’s all about finding that sweet spot where you’re getting the vitamins and minerals your body craves while still savoring the flavors you love.

Think of your body as a magnificent product of thousands of years of evolution—a well-oiled machine that deserves some serious care. What you put in is precisely what you’ll get out. So, give your body the best fuel it deserves in the following ways:

a. Limit your alcohol intake

It’s common knowledge that booze can seriously mess with your head. It’s not just about getting a little tipsy and having a good time. It goes much deeper than that. For starters, alcohol can increase your anxiety levels and mess with your emotions.² So if you’re already feeling down, gulping that bottle might seem like a tempting escape route. But relying on the bottle won’t help you find complete happiness when you want to cry.

Sometimes life sucks, and drowning your sorrows in a few drinks with the group sounds like a solid plan. Go ahead, have a drink or two when you’re feeling blue but watch out for signs of becoming a booze junkie.

b. Work on your diet

A well-balanced diet is the key to unlocking your full potential. Your brain and body need that good stuff to function at their best. So ditch processed junk foods and go for unrefined, whole foods. If you want to boost your mood, load up on fruits and veggies. They’re like little mood-boosting powerhouses, packed with all the good stuff your body craves. Don’t forget to include some complex carbohydrates and proteins in your meals to release those feel-good hormones that help you act happy when you want to cry.

6. Sweat up with some exercise

When you get moving, your body releases those magical feel-good chemicals in your brain and makes you feel alive. Now, don’t worry if you’re not a gym rat or a marathon runner. Any form of movement is better than sitting on your couch. You can take a brisk walk, go for a run, or hit the gym. You can even hula-hoop, skip rope, or shred on a skateboard. Just find something you enjoy and get your heart pumping to help you be happy when you want to cry.

Meanwhile, exercising with others not only helps you feel more connected and supported, but also takes your mind off that sadness.

7. Prioritize sleep

When you’re feeling down, it’s easy to sleep too much or struggle to catch sleep. But getting enough quality sleep keeps your mood up. Stick to a regular sleep schedule like your life depends on it. Create a relaxing bedtime routine that helps you wind down and prepare for that much-needed shut-eye. Make that bed of yours cozy with a comfy mattress, and some soft sheets, and don’t forget those blackout curtains or an eye mask if you’re easily bothered by lights. Now, get a solid 7 to 9 hours of high-quality sleep every night.

When you’re well-rested, you’ll wake up feeling strong, ready to conquer the day with a positive attitude and boundless energy.

8. Let it out and have a good cry

It is OK to cry, so let it out.³ Crying is a natural response to a whole range of emotions. Whether it’s joy, pain, or anger, letting those tears flow can be a fantastic outlet to deal with the ups and downs of life.

If you’re having trouble crying, crank up the sad tunes or dive into a tear-jerking movie. When you permit yourself to cry, there’s no shame or embarrassment in it. Tears are a natural part of life, and releasing them is healthy and all part of the healing process.

9. Inhale, exhale. Just take a deep breath

Deep breathing not only helps oxygenate your blood, but it’s also a legit relaxation technique. Inhale deeply for a count of 4, hold that breath like a champ for a count of 7, and then exhale slowly for a count of 8. Repeat this cycle a few times, and you’ll be amazed at how it can shift your focus and bring a sense of calm.

It also takes your attention away from whatever is causing that sadness and brings you back to the present moment and helps you to act happy when you want to cry.

10. Try a journaling journey

Starting a journal is like opening up a gateway to understanding and reflection. It’s a safe space to capture your thoughts, feelings, and experiences. Don’t worry about sounding like Shakespeare or finding the “perfect” words. Just let it all spill out onto the page. You’ll often find that those overwhelming emotions aren’t as overpowering as they seemed when they were bouncing around in your head.

So, don’t hold back. Grab that journal or open up that digital document. Pour your heart out, no matter how messy or incoherent it may seem. The act of writing itself is a therapeutic journey.

11. Cultivate a life of appreciation

When you’re feeling down, it’s easy to get caught up in what you lack and forget about all the good things already in your life. That’s where gratitude swoops in to save the day. It helps you shift your focus from the half-empty glass to the half-full one.

So, take a moment each day to ponder and appreciate what you’re thankful for in your life. It could be something as basic as having a roof over your head or food on your plate. Or maybe it’s that gorgeous rose you spotted, a stranger’s warm smile, or the amazing friends you have.

When you actively practice gratitude, your brain starts rewiring itself. It becomes a happiness-seeking machine, constantly on the lookout for reasons to be cheerful.

12. Embrace self-love

Instead of beating yourself up, treat yourself like you would your own child (figuratively, of course). It’s time to shower yourself with that self-love and care. Speak kindly to yourself, forgive those mistakes (we all make them), and let positive self-talk become your go-to language. Engage in something that brings you joy and happiness. Take a luxurious bath, treat yourself to that new book you’ve been eyeing, or indulge in a delicious meal at your favorite restaurant.

Remember, being kind and gentle with yourself is the secret sauce to bouncing back from those down moments. When you practice self-compassion, you’re paving the way for a brighter, more fulfilling journey.

Conclusion – act happy when you want to cry

Just because you’re feeling blue doesn’t mean you gotta stay stuck in that gloomy state. There’s a whole bunch of stuff you can do to turn that frown upside down. First things first, build habits that bring you joy and happiness when your eyes wet up ready to cry. Find those activities that make you crack up and make ’em a part of your daily routine. And don’t forget, if you need a shoulder to lean on, reach out to someone you trust or even a professional who knows their stuff.

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