Hello and welcome to the part two discussion about mental health. Today’s part two discussion is from a subject that has gained momentum within society. Whenever you can, go and read the blog I wrote on Monday about my own personal history with mental health. Always feel free to follow me here on WordPress, or on my Facebook Page. Let’s continue our mental health discussion from earlier this week.
I’ve managed to learn a lot about my own health over the past five years. This has been the most progressive learning curve I’ve hand, even compared to my living situational changes that occurred during middle school and high school. I ended part one on where I am emotionally, six months into 2018. A lot of small circumstances have changed since my improvements began in 2013.
September- December has a tendency to be the worst portion of the year.2017 was the worst season to date. Usually, September and November are the lowest points of the year. Except in 2017- I had a pre-September feeling in July and while that feeling was new it lasted for several weeks. July-December was a dark time. I had some sunshine moments, but I still couldn’t shake my negative thinking and feelings. While June just started, I need to start creating safe spaces for me at home, work and in nature. This is so when September rolls around this year, I’ll be mentally prepared. IF you have any advice you would like to share, please feel free to comment below.
In High School, I discovered a song that didn’t help me during times of depression. If I Die Young by The Band Perry. It took me one fall season to realize that I no longer need to listen to the song anymore. Any time I would hear it on the radio, I would have a harsh reaction I decided to give it a listen last fall, and it didn’t make me sad like it used to. I actually was slightly angry that the song was written. It’s not a bad song, but its the music video that got to me. I also recall a lot of people not wanting the song heard on the radio much either, because of it’s contents. I do have one to-go to song that does help me when sadness clouds in… I’m So Blue by Michael Jackson. Later this month, I’ll be writing a blog about me and my love for MJ’s music.
Again, I learned what not to use social media for in High School. Social Media was still new to me, and I was posting negative and depressing statuses (that should’ve never been posted online). Most have been removed, but I do tend to continue to clear out my social media from time to time. I now spend less time on social media now, which is good for my health anyways. I only check social media for messages, and to see how some of my friends are doing.
Eating & Drinking Habits
What you eat is what you become. Your body cycles through skin and blood cells every 30 days. Imagine how it feels to go weeks with sweets and then you switched to fruits and veggies? I became a Vegetarian (except chicken every 2-3 weeks) over two years ago. I’ve been able to improve my eating habits. I choose to limit the amount of coffee I have per day, and I make sure that I drink plenty of water.
Speaking of drinking, alcohol is known to be a depressant. It doesn’t depress me that much. I still limit how much I drink, because alcohol can mess with your intuition and basic operational skills, so I drink minimally each week.
Just accomplishing three tasks can help with depression. I always make my tasks simple on those heavier days. Shower, Eat, Go to work. Journaling is one that I schedule for every day, but usually only manage to do every two to three days. It’s always a bonus if on my heavier days of depression that I am able to journal out my feelings. So far in 2018, my depression has been steemed from the idea that I don’t have friends here in the city.
While anxiety was discovered after depression (by a few months), this is the one that needs more improvement. The two jobs I have has helped with managing anxiety within the work place. Where my fight or flight mode outside of work is still within a sensory overload, it’s made smaller improvements. For me, just taking five to ten minutes each day to just breathe helps me relax. During an anxiety attack, I have to just refocus and close my eyes (this works well in the work place).
Friends & Family
My family has always been there for me when I’ve been anxious. For depression, I have had family support. Sometimes, my family has become irritated when my depression lasts several weeks to months. By that point, they don’t know how to help me anymore. That’s when I typically turn to friends (and burn those friendships to the ground; a bad habit of mine) and try to fix myself either with my friends or without them. Something I would like to see developed is ways for parents to help their children during times of depression and anxiety.
Slowly, I am starting to be available to help others out during times of stress. I am best at talking things out with people and learning why they (and/or I) feel a certain way. I’ve learned to reach out on social media as well, but only in small doses.
If you are feeling depressed, anxious, or just feeling thrown by life- always know that there are people who will chat with you in person, on the phone, or via social media. Reaching out to friends, family and certified counselors isn’t my forte when I’m feeling “mentally sick.” It’s usually when after the storm passes, that I realize how important it was that I talked to someone about my struggles (past, present, and future).
What is your favorite tip for coping with depression and anxiety? Let me know in the comment section and I do respond to comments made. Thank you for taking the time to read this, and I wish you all the best.