What is this “Fahrenheit 451?” Why are so many Americans taking happy pills and relying on expensive medications that cause horrible side effects? Did you know that your body releasing endorphins can cheer you up immediately? No pill needed. Did you know that when your body hurts and aches, it’s trying to tell you something? Taking a pill to mask it only hides the problem; you need to find out why you’re having aches and pains.
Before you pop a pill, try some of these natural ways to combat depression. They really do work for me; if they don’t work for you, that pill or an overpriced therapist will still be waiting for you. Keep your wallet closed and try these completely free ways to fight depression.
If you’re tired of being lost in your own thoughts or wrapped up in your own mental anguish; try helping someone else. Human beings need each other. Sometimes taking the focus off of ‘you’ can help you to see that your problems aren’t any different or worse than other peoples. You may even find a really brave or positive person that will inspire you or say the right thing, and make you realize that life’s too short to spend miserable.
If you’re depressed, the last thing you want to do is go outside and get some fresh air, let alone start jogging or doing jumping jacks. I promise, I know how you feel. I just went through some really serious cancer that almost killed me. I couldn’t even walk or go to the bathroom by myself at one point. If you make yourself get up and burn some energy; you’ll have more energy (straight from the mouth of my surgeon). Endorphins that your body releases will automatically cheer you up.
A little sunshine does the spirit and the body good. According to multiple studies, including one by Stanford University, sunlight triggers the synthesis of Vitamin D in our bodies. Web MD states that, “There is a growing body of research suggesting that vitamin D deficiency increases the risk for a host of human cancers, as well as other disorders including type l diabetes , rheumatoid arthritis , tuberculosis , and multiple sclerosis. Slap on some sunscreen and take a walk. Drag yourself out of that depressing house for a few minutes and rejoin the land of the living. If you want to, just sit in the warm sunshine or take a book and read in a hammock. I promise you will feel better mentally and emotionally.
It’s a Choice:
People always ask me why I’m so happy. What is the secret of happiness? The truth is, I’ve got just as many sob stories as the next guy; often times many more, but you’d never know it unless I’m trying to help someone get through something. The secret to happiness is simple. It’s a choice. Every morning when I wake up I say, “Thank you for this day!” Sometimes it isn’t so easy to do, but saying that out loud helps me to remember how lucky I am to be alive. You have to choose each day to let nothing get you down. That means distancing yourself from negativity (even if it’s your spouse), stopping the negative thoughts in your head and replacing them with positive affirmations, and looking for the good in every situation. An example of this is; I almost died from cancer, but on the bright side of things…I’m closer to my mom, I know my boyfriend loves me for who I am, everyday seems sweeter and brighter, and I’ll never be afraid of dying again.
Special Note: Being sad is normal and healthy in some circumstances. I do not mean to imply that people should just shake off death or major life events. I simply mean that at some point, we have to pull ourselves out of the sadness and go on.
When someone we love dies, a husband or wife of 50 years, a child, a best friend; it’s normal to feel anything from sadness, to anger, to numbness, to despair, and beyond. Don’t start popping anti-depressants to mask your pain. It’s important to let those feelings out, accept them, and know that you have every right to feel whatever it is you’re going through. I think that your loved one would want you to go on living and at some point smile again without feeling guilty.
God, the universe, evolution, whatever you want to call it; gave us a mind that is much more powerful than we can even comprehend. Realizations or ‘light bulbs’ that go off in your brain can completely change your outlook on life. They’re also free! Look up Jeffrey Gitomer online and even though some of his You Tube videos talk about sales; they’re all geared toward positivity and pretty darn funny! Realize why you feel sad or depressed. Got it? Okay; now do something about it. You have two choices here; change the way you think and change your life, or be miserable and unhappy for the rest of it.
Don’t feel alone anymore! Whatever problem you have, I promise there is someone else who is going through it right now too. Just reach out your hand and let someone help you. If you don’t have any family or even any friends; join a support group, a book club, an online forum; anything to help you realize you aren’t all alone in your pain. Remember though; misery loves company so don’t gravitate towards negative people. Find someone who is the type of person you would like to become!
My last bit of advice is to pretty simple. Learn to compartmentalize. That means, for example; tomorrow you are late for work, your teenager is being disrespectful, you keep wondering how you’re going to pay the mortgage, and you’re pretty sure your spouse is having an affair. Whew! This could be the worst day of your life! Instead of hurling yourself into the depths of despair; try something else.
Imagine that you have different rooms inside of your head, in these rooms are many boxes. Take each thing that’s happening and put it in the appropriate box. Close the lid tight and don’t open that box until the appropriate time. The only time it should see the light of day is when it happens, when you deal with the emotions that go with it, or when you’re finding a solution for the problem. Other than that; you’re wasting your time, energy, happiness, and the gift of living in the moment by worrying about it.
I truly hope this helps you. Sometimes we can be our own worst enemy. If you truly cannot break your depressive state on your own, never be ashamed of reaching out to a licensed therapist. Best of luck; wishing you a day of peace and joy!
More from Carrie:
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