3 Tips For Dealing With The Blues
This time of year can be really rough for a lot of people for many different reasons. Whether it be difficult relationships, or the stress of the holidays (parties, gifts, expectations, etc) or just even the cold weather, finding time for yourself is sometimes impossible and feeling overwhelmed is common. This past week I was sick and overwhelmed with work. I didn’t feel well and couldn’t motivate myself to workout or practice yoga. I noticed immediately a decline in my attitude as well as my overall energy. I began to question everything about my life and what I was doing. I started to get annoyed
at the "little" things and nothing seemed to bring me joy. I notice how quickly my mood began to spiral downwards, but luckily through many years of recovery and therapy work, I knew what I needed to do.
These 3 things are my GAME CHANGERS! I hope they help you when you are feeling blue!
1. Think about what you are thinking about.
Sounds funny, huh? This is often referred to as metacognition - to become aware or to “think” about what you are thinking about. It is a step further than just realizing you are down or depressed. It is actually asking yourself why your thoughts are your thoughts. What was it that triggered you and how did it start. It is the first step in changing certain patterns in our brains. Understanding and breaking out of our brain thinking "loops" is the key to gaining back the joy that has been stolen from us. It is as simple as that. Bringing the subconscious mind to the surface changes the "loop" or pattern in the brain. Sometimes, this is enough to change your mood by itself.
2. Make a gratitude list.
When I feel the blues coming on and no amount of thinking about "why" seems to make it better, I make a list of everything in the world that I am grateful for. It doesn't matter if it is as simple as the sky is blue, I will write it on a piece of paper. I try to make my list a long as possible. Usually my list includes loved ones, my home, pets, and being clothed and fed for today, but I also include things that I've been through in the past that I am now free from. Then, I pray over the list and give thanks to my Higher Power, whom I choose to call God. Making this list will almost immediately change my perspective on things.
3. Move your body!
If I haven't been working out or practicing yoga, I will almost always begin to feel down. I try to always move my body 5 days a week. If life gets in the way, as it sometimes does, and I begin to feel a decline in my mood, I have to make movement it a priority. Major health problems arise when you stop moving your body, and it only gets worse every week you let it go.
According to Business Insider, the first week when you stop exercising, you lose 5% of your oxygen flow to your muscles and other organs. That means you have 5% less energy than you did before. The second to third week, your muscle cells become smaller whereas your fat cells become larger. You now have lost 12% of oxygen available to your muscles. When you hit two months, you lose 26% of oxygen flow to your muscles. You are now at a greater risk of high blood pressure, high levels of fat in the blood, certain cardiovascular diseases, obesity, depression, and if you aren't already suffering from low self esteem, your low energy levels will most likely contribute to that as well.
The answer my friends is to just move your body. Taking a few days off is fine, but getting on your yoga mat or into the gym is going to do wonders for your mood, not to mention your energy levels and overall health.
Thank you guys for your continued support, love, and well wishes! I couldn't do this without you!