Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Combating negativity, starting with small gestures

Throughout my Youtube/ Online blogging career I never really touched base on more personal topics like mental health. As I'm getting older I find that being in touch with your emotional needs is just as important as everything else in life, if not the most important. I am guilty of putting my feelings aside to power through long work days and then turning myself into a lifeless blob at the end of the day only to face another day of robotic engagements again. Over time it's becoming a habit, and I always find myself in the foulest of moods. I notice that I'm always down in the dumps and people don't want to be around me because I'm so ... not fun to be around. I find myself constantly traveling back to younger days when worries and stress were foreign vocabulary and life really was just all about having fun and...well, living. I find myself enjoying those days so much more now that they're long gone and I constantly crave those feelings that I no longer feel. Feeling negative is a choice, once you make that first step it turns into 10 steps, 20 steps, etc. You tread deeper and deeper into those negative feelings and things sort of find themselves in a negative feedback loop. The more bad choices you make the more terrible you feel. It could be as small as sleeping the day away, then waking up to find the day has gone and it's now dark outside, ultimately making you feel worse. That's just one example of something small that could feed into the negativity. Of course this only touches base on the surface of bigger/ larger issues that tend to hide inside of each one of us. I honestly don't have a solution for this. It feels like a lot sometimes and I can only do a few things to alleviate some surface symptoms.
The first thing we all need when times are tough is a breather. And by that I mean, literally that. Take a minute and take five deep breaths, and count from 5 down to 1. With each breath, really take the time to inhale deeply and also exhale deeply. By the time you get to the last deep breath you should feel a lot more relaxed. The point of taking these five deep breaths is to really take a little time for yourself and just pause from whatever chaos that's happening. Taking deep breaths also allow your brain to get more oxygen and trust me, we need that.
I also take initiative to get sunlight when I'm feeling "not so happy". Something about the warmth of the sun can really perk up a blueish mood. I'll open up all of my blinds and open the window wide to let the sun rays seep in along with some nice, fresh air. By now I usually feel 10x better.
Another thing I like to do is make a cup of hot tea (flavoring is your choice). I like to go for teas that contain little to no caffeine. (Chamomile, Peppermint, etc) Caffeine is great for a quick pick me up but you also face the dangers of a hard crash later and that might make you feel worse than you already did, counterproductive to what we are trying to do here. So grab a cute mug, snuggle up in some fuzzy blankets and enjoy a cup of hot tea. I also like doing this while sun bathing, along with some fresh air. I think this is a delicious combo suitable for a down mood that desperately needs a lift me up.
Lastly, if none of the above is helping, then I'd say pick yourself up and head to the gym. Get a good workout in, this will help you get your blood pumping and exercising releases endorphin that will make you feel good. I have a hard time doing this. I honestly do. Yesterday was my first time at the gym in 2-3 months and it was tough to even get my butt in there. I pay every month for that stupid gym membership but I never go. I always find myself with some lame excuse to get myself out of going. But honestly if I had just been less lazy I feel like I'd be in a better mood.
So that's about it, four little things you can do to alleviate some of that nasty symptoms of feeling down. I can't say that they will cure anything because to be honest with you they haven't cured anything for me. The key word here is "alleviate". They won't cure anything but definitely helps a bit. Good luck.


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