Depression is something that many suffer from and sadly some suffer in silence. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 350 million people worldwide suffer from depression.
I am one of those who suffers in silence when it hits me. It is easy to put on a face that everything is OK when you are down inside. Imagine how many public figures are smiling their way through their day like everything is OK when things are far from OK.
I have been in contact with many that suffer from this and it can disable you.
I find myself getting frustrated about things all the while still assisting people with their problems. I get overwhelmed and feel as though I can never get anything done (unfinished projects), nothing goes right for me, no one cares about my happiness and the thoughts go on. I then shut down my social media platforms or simply ignore my notifications because I was not in the mood to interact with people. I was not in the mood to pretend that everything was ok. I have never been clinically diagnosed but when I notice that I am slipping into a depressed state I do a few techniques to help me get back to normal that do not consist of medications.
1: Breathe & Breathe Again
Yes, breathing techniques work great for me. When I find myself drifting further away from my happy place, I close my eyes and began to take deep breaths. This allows me to slow down my breathing and heart rate and I can just be for a moment. Many times after this is done I am able to press on and not get in a Debbie downer state.
2: Spend Time With Nature
I have a natural love for nature and it is also a healing mechanism. In nature everything is right. It is peaceful and there is no rush of life. There is no complaining and high expectations. There are no arguments and deadlines. There are no attitudes coming from plants that have had a bad day. There are no bill collectors or sales representatives hounding you about what you owe or if you would like to start a new account.
If you would shut off your mobile device and just be in nature, it is very calming and you will feel renewed.
Meditation is a must for me. The explanation of meditation is a state of deep peace that occurs when the mind is calm and silent.
A Typical Meditation
1. Sit upright in a straight-backed chair, with your spine about an inch from the back of the chair, and your feet flat on the floor.
2. Close your eyes. Use your mind to watch your breath as it flows in and out. Observe your sensations without judgment. Do not try to alter your breathing.
3. After a while your mind will wander. Gently bring your attention back to your breath. The act of realizing that your mind has wandered – and bringing your attention back – is the key thing.
4. Your mind will eventually become calm.
5. Repeat every day for 20-30 minutes.
As busy as my mind is, this still works for me and I find myself being back in my happy place.
When you have anxiety or depression, exercise often seems like the last thing you want to do. But once you get motivated, exercise can make a big difference.
How does exercise help combat depression?
- Releasing feel-good brain chemicals that may ease depression (neurotransmitters, endorphins and endocannabinoids)
- Reducing immune system chemicals that can worsen depression
- Increasing body temperature, which may have calming effects
- Gain confidence. Meeting exercise goals or challenges, even small ones, can boost your self-confidence. Getting in shape can also make you feel better about your appearance.
- Take your mind off worries. Exercise is a distraction that can get you away from the cycle of negative thoughts that feed anxiety and depression.
- Get more social interaction. Exercise and physical activity may give you the chance to meet or socialize with others. Just exchanging a friendly smile or greeting as you walk around your neighborhood can help your mood.
- Cope in a healthy way. Doing something positive to manage anxiety or depression is a healthy coping strategy. Trying to feel better by drinking alcohol, dwelling on how badly you feel, or hoping anxiety or depression will go away on its own can lead to worsening symptoms.
I do not exercise as often as I should but when I do I love the way I feel afterwards. I recently began exercising a lot more. It is going to take discipline just like anything else in life. We can do this!
I love to read! I enjoy reading everything from love stories, dramas, thrillers, history, business and marketing and more.
Reading calms me and allows me to learn and experience many different emotions and because of this I am no longer worried about any current problems. I become the characters (sometimes) and sometimes I am taking notes.
I prefer to read over watching TV. Unfortunately, there are too many subliminal programming techniques on television that controls your behavior. The last thing I need is to receive overloads of subliminal messages that send me into an unhappy state of mind. Subliminal programming is very REAL.
6) Speak Positive Affirmations
I believe I may be the positive affirmation Queen of my castle. My children can tell you that I am always speaking positive things over my life as well as others. No matter how I feel, I practice I AM positive affirmations into the Universe. I do believe in law of attraction and vibration so I am careful about any negative self talk.
You can write some positive affirmations on a dry erase board and hang it up in your home and speak it daily or you can just take the time to speak great things over yourself throughout the day. Does it work, ABSOLUTELY. You will began to manifest these feelings/emotions.
Here are a few of my own-
- I am a great mother
- I am a great wife
- I am a great daughter
- I am a great sister
- I am a great friend
- I am wealthy
- I am loved
- I am dependable
- I am happy
- I am unique
- I am abundant
- I am prosperous
This list goes on and on……
Take a moment after reading this blog and write a list of positive affirmations to speak over yourself daily.
7) Talk to Someone You Trust
It is always good to talk to someone about what you are feeling. In most cases, just being able to share your bundled up feelings with someone can relieve you and you can see and think clearer. Do not be afraid to tell someone what you are experiencing. They may can provide resources to help you.
8) Keep a Journal
In my case, keeping a journal has helped me a lot. I am able to write down my feelings and go on about my day. Keep your journal in a safe hidden place if you do not want anyone to have access to it.
Did you know that there are also foods that can help ease your depression?
Combat your depression naturally by eating better!
Here are some “good mood” foods:
- Dark Leafy Greens
Depression is serious. I chose to come out with my struggle of remaining in my happy place to show you that you can do it! Don’t let depression steal your life/your joy. This is easier said than done (trust me I know) but you have fight in you to get through this. You have more power than you think. Use it!
Do you struggle with depression?
Disclaimer: I am not a professional/doctor and I can not diagnose anyone with depression. This blog is to share how I naturally combat mine.