Whether we suffer from mild demotivation, feeling down or struggle with profound states of despair and listlessness, depression is a very common disturbance. Is depression an illness in itself or a sign that we are not listening to our psyche and our suffering.
When we do not listen and take care of ourselves, the suffering grows until, at crisis point, it comes to the forefront and overshadows our ability to cope, reason and act. We seem to be falling down a black hole with no sense of control over our mindset or our lives. Learning to listen to the signs of our bodies and emotions enables us to address issues before they turn into crises.
When it reaches crisis point, it can be difficult to find the will to climb out of the dark hole we’ve fallen into. Depression has many causes. It can speak to us of a lingering sense of powerlessness, unaddressed anger that we turn against ourselves, poor self-image and self-loathing. In many cases, we can learn to address and heal the causes before depression becomes a crisis.
Diving into the depths of our psyches might seem a bit daunting, but facing our demons build deep and sustainable inner strength that helps us in all areas of our lives.
Here are some of the things we can do to prevent or work with depression when it arises:
Diet: maintaining a healthy lifestyle with a healthy diet full of fresh fruits and vegetables and avoiding processed foods
Exercise: moderate daily exercise, fresh air, and
Attitude: paying attention to our own attitudes and those of the people with whom we spend our time can help us to choose and create a positive and wholesome environment for ourselves. Negative thoughts and emotions are a sign that our psyche is crying out to us for attention. Learning to pay mindful attention to our inner ups and downs helps us maintain mastery over them and helps to avoid falling into the trap of our negativity.
Intellectual stimulation: music, literature, culture stimulates our minds, our imaginations and our creativity. When the juices are flowing, depression cannot take hold and tends to fall to the wayside. Of course, some creative geniuses are inherently depressed and learn how to channel their suffering into creative expression.
Spiritual sustenance: Cultivating a regular relationship to activities, books and people that inspire, uplift us and broaden our perspective helps us keep our cool when it seems that things aren’t going our way. Where belief is of the mind, faith is of the soul. It uplifts us and helps us to make meaning from rather than get beaten down from life’s ups and downs.
It has been scientifically proven that all of these elements contribute to our neurogenesis. This keeps our brains happy and healthy and can often prevent depression or provide a way to re-establish balance when it threatens.
101 reasons to go to therapy
This blogpost is part of a series called 101 reasons to go to therapy. Please feel free to share this post, or view more in the series.
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