Can Tracking Your Moods Make You Happier?

Tracking daily steps can motivate us to walk more. Tracking sleep can reveal problems such as sleep apnea. Can tracking our moods make us happier?

There are now many tech ways to log where you fall on the happy-sad spectrum each day. Fitbit offers mood logging in its stress-management tool. Period-tracking apps, such as Clue and Flo allow women to see how their moods fluctuate with their cycles. Apps like Daylio focus on mood.

The latest big player to enter the arena is Apple. Its latest software updates—iOS 17, iPadOS 17 and WatchOS 10, due this fall and already out in public beta—include a way to log your state of mind. Apple’s Health app also includes a mental-health questionnaire that can assess depression risk.

Many mental-health professionals say simply being aware of your mental state can identify patterns and improve well-being. When people can see associations between their moods and factors like sleep and exercise, these doctors say, it can be even more powerful.

But some research suggests that people don’t experience lasting benefits because they don’t track often or long enough.

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