It's no wonder in today's modern society that so many of us suffer from anxiety, stress and or depression on a regular basis. We are surrounded by mass produced technological devices that update at rapid speeds, the population is getting out of control, the food we eat is over processed beyond anything that should be normal and we are so caught up in work, social media, going to appointments, spending time with those we love and finding any ounce of time to allow us to do something positive for ourselves we have no time to just stop and smell the roses as they say.
But this is having a major affect on our health. As a population, on top of the odd headaches we are getting high blood pressure, sleep disorders, cancers, diabetes, acne, auto immune diseases, allergies, addictions and so on. So what are we able to do for ourselves on a holistic level to assist us when these emotions strike and to eventually overcome any related dis-eases from modern society? The following are 10 easy areas to look into and turn to for reducing stress, anxiety and depression in our lives, without the need for heavy medication.
1. Ditch smoking, caffeine and alcohol. Really anything that you turn to as a coping mechanism. These 'drugs' may make you feel better at the time, but the lows they offer post usage are worse than what you were feeling to begin with and will quickly draw you into a pattern of dependability which is how addiction begins.
2. Sleep when you are tired. There is nothing written in the adult manual that states you have to be in bed at a certain time and sleep for a certain amount of hours. Yes we all need sleep and a good amount of it but coming from someone who has suffered from insomnia - don't force it! Forcing sleep upon yourself is the worst thing you can do for yourself. You will not fall asleep, the best thing to do is get up and do some low impact activities until you feel tired.
3. Deep breathing and meditation are great ways to release restless thoughts from our minds and to slow down our racing heart and chaotic inner voice. Breathing in deep oxygen-full breathes will make you feel better and meditating before and after bed will help you to have better sleep while also releasing stress.
4. It's written in the stars, well on all the billboards, magazines and TV shows. Yes regular exercise and healthy eating will make you feel better! Of course binge eating delicious meals is a must sometimes but we all know the dreaded after belly growls. It's not good for us- so stick to healthy food most of the time! Exercise releases endorphins which are natures drug to make us feel better. No chemicals needed. Also try drinking teas made from relaxing ingredients like chamomile.
5. Being in nature surrounds us with negative ions. These oxygen filled spaces help us by supplying clean air to promote better concentration and focus, clarity of the mind, improves creativity, social skills, exercise whilst being outdoors etc. Being surrounded by natural light also helps to improve sleep patterns.
6. Release all of your thoughts and worries onto paper (or a good listener). Journal-ling has become almost a hip thing to do nowadays so its great that it can promote positive mental health. Find some time each day to write in your journal. By freeing yourself of your burdens everything will seem less daunting and heavy. If writing isn't your thing reach out to someone. We all have one person you should feel safe opening up to when we feel low, if you don't, try reaching out to a hotline. The people are great and obviously trained to help you. Don't feel silly for what's going on inside, a lot of us have the same thoughts.
7. Self care Self care Self care! You all know I'm a Nazi for self care. take time for you and only you. At least once a week if not every day. If you have the time make yourself a nice bedtime ritual or morning ritual that will leave you in a good mood. Don't have the time? Schedule a date for yourself at least once a week. You cannot burden yourself looking after others if you have not been looking after yourself first. You will have no energy and what good are you to them if you are neglecting your own self care? So make a list of things you enjoy that you can start implementing - NOW!
8. Create and keep a clean environment for yourself at home and at work. Once we start to feel down it's so easy to let the cleaning and organisation of our spaces go by the way side. And then we get funked about the mess and it becomes a very bad cycle for our hygiene and mental health. So whack on some pumping tunes when you have a bit of energy and set to cleaning up your space. Living in a clean environment will help the clarity and positivism flow through to other areas of your life. You will wake up and not look at mess first thing in the morning and start each day right.
9. Set goals and a daily routine for yourself. Having something to work towards will assist you to keep going when things are tough. Keeping to a routine helps us to overcome anxieties if things go out of whack or we aren't prepared for something. Plan out your schedule so you know what's coming up and things that need to be done. Make it an easily doable task list that is achievable for you at the time. Going to bed feeling accomplished and not stressed about things that were forgotten will help you sleep soundly also.
10. Using mother nature's medicine cabinet instead of turning to pharmaceuticals is much better for our bodies and out pockets. There are many many essential oils and herbs easily accessible to us that will help with anxiety, stress and depression. I will go through many in my next few blogs. Crystals to keep in your pockets and teas to drink will instantly make you feel better without side effects.