3 Great ways to beat the blues
Most people have felt low or depressed at some point in their lives. Knowing how you can help yourself is a good start to beating the blues.
Here are 3 alternative ways to overcoming the blues:
- Research has shown that how people think can either help or hurt them because there’s a connection between the way you think and the way you feel. You need to accept that people have natural moods – high, low and in-between. When you’re down, you will go up again so long as you don’t interfere with the process. But the best way to stay down is to keep thinking about it – that can lead to ‘analysis paralysis’. When thoughts detract from your feeling of general well-being, you should aim to dismiss those thoughts. This is not denial. By dismissing negative thoughts, you’re rejecting damaging thoughts. When you feel stressed or down, stop and think about your thoughts and feelings. The pressure of stress in your life or your feeling of being low is to do with your thoughts and feelings, not something external to you. Once you realise that you have the power to control your emotions – and dismiss negative thoughts, you’ll begin to feel better.
- It’s a good idea to reflect on why you are feeling depressed. It might be related to a recent life event. This is very often the case. If you can find an obvious reason, all the better, however, even when you might not be able to make a recent connection to your feeling of being blue, you can help yourself by doing things that can change your mood. Keep a diary on how your mood is related to external events. By being mindful of what kind of things affect your mood, you can act on changing the way you react to those things. You can also change your mood by confiding in someone and sharing your problems, rather than bottling them up. Go out and do things instead of brooding. Find someone you can do some enjoyable activities with – and make a regular habit of doing pleasurable things.
- Apart from being good for your heart and general health, regular exercise is a proven way of diffusing stress and tension and lifting your mood. People who don’t exercise regularly tend to be more stressed and less satisfied with life. The beauty of exercise is that anyone can do it – and you can choose the kind of exercise that works for you. The cheapest and best exercise is brisk walking. Some doctors have been known to prescribe exercise as a treatment for people with depression. In fact, some research has indicated that regular exercise is as effective as counselling for some people with depression.
To learn more about how you can help yourself when you’ve got the blues see: Losing the 21st Century Blues.