Depression is something that we all experience at some point in our lives. Sometimes it is mild and we recovery fairly quickly and other times its more severe and persistent. Depression takes away the joy and happiness we once felt towards life and others. We become unmotivated, lethargic, withdrawn, negative and incapable of reigniting that spark of passion and wonderment that exists deep inside of us. So here are five natural and holistic tips to help you on the road to recovery.
1. Take things slowly; Don't rush into things or pressure yourself to recover in a short period of time. This will not only put more undue pressure on yourself but will ultimately set you up for failure. Just take it one day at a time. Keep it simple in the beginning and go for a short walk somewhere. Make a mental note to regulate your breathing and just appreciate the beauty of the nature all around you. Notice the spectacular colours and sounds of nature. Feel the wind caress your skin and and the sun warm your body. Lose yourself in the moment and give yourself permission to just relax and let go of all your distressing, worrisome and negative thoughts.
2. Buy some aromatherapy oils or incense; Essential oils like lavender, rose and chamomile can really help relax and soothe the body, mind and spirit. Add some lavender oil to your warm bath before bedtime. Burn some incense around the house. Rub some peppermint or eucalyptus oil on your temples and neck if you are tense and have a headache. The fragrance from essential oils and incense captivates our olfactory senses and brings us immediately into the present moment. It helps to soften our moods and relax our minds.
3. Keep a diary; Writing down your thoughts at the end of each day is a great way to get everything out of your head before bed. Let the thoughts get stuck to the paper instead of being stuck in your head. A diary is also a great way to write down daily affirmations such as "I love and respect myself", 'I appreciate myself", or "I am a kind, strong, loving and independent person". Keeping a diary can help you to keep track of your moods and thought processes from day to day and week to week. Go back through your diary and identify the moments when your mood was low. What triggered you? What happened on that day to lower your mood? Do you remember what you did to raise your mood? Keeping track of your moods and thoughts like this helps you to identify your triggers and strengthens your emotional awareness and resiliency.
4. Eat healthy; This is not just about watching your diet, its more about eating food which feels good to eat. Have you ever noticed how eating cold, fresh fruit like watermelon, apples or oranges feels good to eat? The crispiness of the apple. The refreshing and cooling wetness of the watermelon or orange. The lightness your body feels after eating it. The feel good moment you get for knowing you are treating yourself and your body properly. Now compare that to fatty and spicy foods which tends to make you feel lethargic, bloated, sweaty, and in the case of chilli, painful.
5. Socialize more; Depression loves and thrives off of the company of one. The problem with being isolated when depressed is that the mind has unrestricted freedom to get itself entangled in a perpetual cycle of negativity and misery. Getting yourself outside of your head and into the company of others can do wonders. Sure, at first its difficult to drum up the enthusiasm to be around "happy" others, but the potential to hear one good joke, and to have one good laugh, is guaranteed to start you on the road to recovery much more than being isolated and withdrawn.