Do you have friends or family who are taking antidepressant medications? Maybe you are as well. TV news shows bombard us with horror stories about war, global warming, and economic disasters. We tend to think that what they tell us is the truth. If you let this "ain't it awful" atmosphere get to you, I guarantee that you will feel depressed.
Here are 4 simple remedies that will lift your spirits and dissolve depression.
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Turn off the radio or TV and stop reading the headlines in the papers! Instead, surround yourself with beauty and peace. If possible, have flowers in your home to look at every day. Take a walk in nature. Pamper yourself with a leisurely bubble bath or massage. Be with loving friends and avoid those who are stressed and negative. Learn to change your brain chemistry through yoga, meditation, or EFT tapping.
Get into a cosmic perspective.
I once heard about a creative psychiatrist whose special lampshade reflected the stars in the night sky onto his ceiling when he turned off the lights. When his patients were lying on his couch in the darkened room and bemoaning their problems, he would frequently direct them to gaze at the ceiling as he asked: "How will this matter in a hundred years?"
I bet that you can't remember what was bothering you six months ago, yet you may be depressed or anxious about something else now. Shift your down mood by putting it into a cosmic perspective. What is ruining your day today? Sit down or lie down and get comfortable. As you get in touch with your depressing thoughts ask yourself: How will this matter in a hundred years? Notice what happens.
You can't change anyone else.
Are you blue because there is someone in your life that you would like to change but aren't succeeding? Irene suffered from depression. Her husband Ben was an alcoholic who was also depressed. He refused to seek help for his problems, and she was miserable because she couldn't convince him to get help. Tearfully she asked: "Am I being unreasonable in wanting him to go for help or join AA?"
I answered: "You can't get milk from a bull!" All of us want to be accepted as we are right now because we are doing the best we can. Even though we may want to do better, we are not able to at this point in our life. Her husband was doing the best he could...at that moment. Find out more about love relationships in my book Grownup Love: Getting It and Keeping It.
Her constant worry was deepening her depression. Irene needed to accept Ben as he was and not as she wanted him to be. Joining Al Anon helped her let go of her depression when she met supportive people who were changing their way of thinking about and dealing with the addicts they loved.
Make a gratitude list.
Ken Keyes, an inspirational spiritual teacher, was a quadriplegic. He radiated love and acceptance in his teaching and his presence. Ken wrote: "To be upset over what you don't have, is to waste what you do have." He was a living example.
When you are feeling depressed and can't get rid of your misery, make a list of everything in your life that you can give thanks for. Start with the simple acknowledgement that you have a roof over your head, food in the pantry, money in your pocket, and a bed to sleep in each night. Add as many items as you can. You might include having a friend, a good memory, a park to sit in, and you can carry a tune. Weigh the positive against the negative you were just thinking and notice the difference.
When you practice these 4 simple activities to release depression by changing your perspective, you can choose to have a good day every day.
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