Recently I read a post titled “I’m coming out of this. Eventually.” by one the blogging greats, Jenny Lawson. Because of her experience and expertise in the realm of blogging, I thought we had nothing in common and never would. It seems like I was wrong as we both live with a monster called depression. It was over a year ago that I, like her, had one of those “nervous breakdowns.” While taking pills and talking with shrinks are all part of recovering, I was sick of feeling sick and empty and blah and nothing, and decided to take depression by the horns. I wanted to recover in my own way. So here are a few of the implementations I added and continue to add to my life that help to take away those maddening depressive thoughts of doom and failure. Depressed or not, all of these suggestions are beneficial for your mind.
1. Affirmations. I know they are New Age-y and I do not care as I love New Age wisdom. For the depressed individual, our negative thoughts pervade our minds so we need to incorporate the opposite. Saying things like, “I am not my depression” as well as “I am loving life at this moment” can really make an impact on your thought processes and turn things around. As always, modify these affirmations to your personal needs making sure to keep them encouraging and empowering.
2. Sunlight. I am a huge fan of sunlight. It is a major mood booster and doldrum fighter. Just a few minutes in the sun can turn you from fatigued to rejuvenated, thanks to that wonderful Vitamin D. (That glorious fresh air can help us too.)
3. Drink. Say “no” to vodka and “yes, please” to H2O. While we may want to wallow in our misery with alcohol, we need the benefits of water. Water is a fantastic mood enhancer. When we are dehydrated, we get irritable and can fall into depression much easier. Hence the water we drink makes everything in our bodies, including our brains, work that much better.
4. Omega 3s. Whether you eat seafood, walnuts, flaxseeds, or take fish oil supplements, your brain will appreciate you. Just as your brain needs hydration, it needs these Omega 3 fatty acids to elevate brain function. A primed brain can aid in busting those intrusive and detrimental thoughts.
5. Gratitude. When in the throes of depression, as difficult as it is, we need to be thankful for the good that we have in our lives. From the comfort of our beloved pets to food in the refrigerator to love in our hearts, we are truly blessed even though our brains try to dupe us into thinking we are worthless and have nothing. Be thankful for any small pockets of positivity that you can find in life on a daily basis.
Overall, there is at least a little comfort in knowing that we do not face this villain alone. We have others out there who are dealing with this and have come through it time and again. There is always hope, we just need to train our brains to know it. We need to keep those bright and pleasant thoughts streaming in and cast those monstrously pessimistic thoughts out.
For more information on how to keep depression at bay and live a less stressed life, check out my website at www.befullywell.com.