I retired early last night with a horrible headache and woke at 4.30 in a grump. Dozed again and woke in a fairly fragile good mood. Now, when your good mood is fragile, it is not a very sensible idea to listen to the news: this morning in the headlines there were no less than six separate items of gloom financial news, to do with benefit cuts, price rises, government contracts and spending restrictions. By the time I’d run the gauntlet of all these my mood had fractured and I felt thoroughly depressed. So, here are my six top tips for dealing with depression:
1. Severely ration your intake of news. The news is almost exclusively gloomy and composed almost 100% of Things You Can Do Nothing About. This is not to say that we can never do anything, nor to excuse us from doing the little we can, but an attempt to deal with the welter of issues we hear about on a daily basis, can only result in exhaustion and frustration. It’s hardly likely you will miss anything important by not listening to the news, so if you’re feeling down, resolve to catch up on it later when you feel better. Let’s face it, you don’t need to hear the same headlines five times a day.
2. Energise! Do something to get the circulation going – walk briskly or jog or dance or prance or do some opening yoga postures….
3. breathe! Breath is our primary source of energy, so use it to the full. Sit tall and breathe from the bottom of your lungs, using the abdominal muscles.
4. Smile. You know, stuff about endorphins, blah blah blah. Better still…
5. Laugh! Find something on the TV or radio or in the paper that makes you laugh.
6. Listen to very high music. I mean musically high, with high notes. This induces a feeling of exaltation. Like this:
I shall be doing all these things today. Plus, reminding myself of all the good stuff that’s happening.