We all struggle with bouts of depression and anxiety. Our lives are much more chaotic and stressful these days compared to previous generations. We work more, sleep less, stress about everything and the fact that a Starbuck’s is on every corner makes caffeine a major part of our lives. In my case, given the nature of preparedness, it’s kind of difficult to escape the feelings of impending doom (at least for me).
In all honesty, there are times when I go through funks – I’m anxious, depressed and have no energy. But lately the funks are lasting longer, and I have more symptoms that I’m dealing with. Last month, while lying in bed (because I had insomnia), I took an online quiz on whether I worry too much. I had almost every symptom for generalized anxiety disorder.
- Joint and muscular issues
- Problems sleeping
- Tingles in fingers and toes
- Indulging in bad habits or self destructive behaviors
- Digestion issues
- Too much caffeine
- Not enough vegetables and fruits
- Overall feeling of impending doom
- No longer wanting to do things that I enjoy
I know that many of you don’t know me personally, but I’m a pretty upbeat and positive person. When I finally looked in the mirror and realized that I allowed my self-destructive behaviors and thoughts to take over – again, something had to be done. I finally started being true to myself and saw that these feelings and behaviors are causing my health to dimish. It got so bad that I had started calling myself “Tess the Mess”! Shortly after this was my wake up call and I made the decision to be my own best friend and make some hard changes. “Tess the Mess” was going away.
10 Things To Turn the Boat Around
I knew that change was necessary and I prefer to do things naturally rather than getting a prescription for synthetic drugs for anxiety disorders. I know this takes a little longer to see results, but I wanted to be as gentle on my body and mind as possible.
- Drop the bad habits – You know the bad habits and self destructive behaviors that cause your body harm. It could be smoking, emotionally eating, drinking alcohol, the list goes on and on. We know that these are bad habits that need to stop.
- Maca Powder – A friend recommended that I take this natural supplement for an overall health boost. I add it to my smoothies and yogurt and it’s great. There are no known side effects to this, so I feel like I’m taking a great natural approach to my well being. Read more about maca powder.
- Take your vitamins – Here’s the deal – I hate taking pills. I’m really good about making fruit and veggie smoothies to get natural vitamins and also eat lots of salads, but I know that taking a supplement here and there helps too. I suffer from joint issues caused by a previous accident, so taking supplements to aid in joint care would be beneficial to me in this respect.
- Drink lots of water – I’m guilty of not drinking enough water during the day. Even though I know that water helps the body regulate itself and run more smoothly, I can’t seem to drink enough. To remedy this, I bought the biggest water bottle that I could find and filled it up three times a day. I also have a spoonful of chia seeds with my water to help ensure my body stayed hydrated. This also gave me a natural energy boost and made such a difference!
- Herbal tinctures – Anxiousness tends to creep up on me and having herbal tinctures for stress and decompressing helped tremendously. It helped me take the edge off.
- Exercise – I hate exercising – that is, until I start doing it. Once I get going, I feel great and wonder why I stopped in the first place. Our bodies need at least 30 minutes of cardio almost every day. I had to make a commitment to myself to incorporate this into my schedule.
- Consistent sleep schedule – My family knows I’m the world’s worst about staying up too late and not wanting to get up in the morning. But our bodies crave consistent patterns – they work more efficiently. Rather than going to bed at 1 am and waking up late, I set my alarm to go off 10 minutes before I should go to bed and set an alarm for the morning.
- Find balance. I know this sounds cheesy, but if you are solely focusing on one aspect of your life, this isn’t healthy. In my case, I was only focusing on work and my family. I hadn’t put any effort into my own well being and I suffered as a result. Read about the 7 aspects of wellness and give yourself permission to take care of you. You deserve it.
- Be your own best friend – Pay attention to your thoughts. Negative thoughts create a toxic environment for you to be in. Not only that, when you have these toxic thoughts and aren’t doing anything to rid yourself or your body of them, you live in this toxic sludge and it will only make your body more toxic and bring you down further. When my thoughts turn negative and critical, it’s time to go for a walk and find a new mantra. When we recognize that bad habits and thoughts have taken oven, we have to be responsible and do what we can to pull ourselves out of it.
- Give yourself 10 minutes – Each day, give yourself permission to not worry or think for 10 minutes. Find a peaceful place outside or in a quiet window in your home and sit and be still. Just breath and be present. It really helps!