Autumn. It’s the time of year I begin to feel that old familiar melancholy come upon me. It feels like a film of some sort comes between me and the vibrancy of life. Ugh! What I do as soon as I feel this sense of doom is panic because I know where this can lead. It can take me deep down into the dark rabbit hole of depression and and that is scary! Scrambling to head this off I:
- Stand on my head. For at least 5 minutes/day, more if possible. Any inversion where your head is below your heart is helpful. Handstand, Downward Facing Dog, Tri-pod, Standing Forward Bend. Inversions are shown to improve brain function, release neurotransmitters, balance hormones, and release endorphins.
- Practice Breath of Joy 5-10 rounds/day. The strong inhalations and synchronized arm movements, awakens your entire system increasing oxygen levels in the bloodstream, temporarily stimulating the sympathetic nervous system, circulating more prana (energy). Here’s an example to watch if you’re not familiar with this breath.
- Pamper myself. I immediately schedule Massages, Reiki, Cranio-Sacral Therapy, Restorative Yoga Classes, etc. For you the pampering may look different but whatever it is that calms you and makes you feel cared for or joyful, do it at least 1x/week. If the items I mentioned are too expensive you can find Groupons or engage in less pricey activities like seeing a movie or take a Bubble Bath. Today I took myself to the zoo because animals make me happy! I used a Library pass and it only cost me $9.00 for 2 hours of pleasure..
- Increase aerobic activity. More days of Elliptical or TreadMill and HIIT and less of Weight Training and Stretching. This activity releases endorphins and other natural brain chemicals that can enhance mood and energy.
- Increase Omega 3 ingestion in the form of supplements (Fish Oil) and foods like Wild Caught Salmon. Increasing omega 3’s has direct effects on serotonin levels.
- Take or Increase St. John’s Wart or anti-depressant meds (if you’re on them and with the approval of your physician of course) which effect serotonin and dopamine levels.
If I catch this gloomy, blue feeling soon enough these 6 actions usually take me back to equilibrium within 2 weeks. I have come to terms with the fact that sadness is a perpetual companion of mine. Sometimes he stays in the shadows and other times he is a ferocious beast taunting me. So if you haven’t yet, try ‘making friends’ with this melancholy creature. I talk to him, tell him, “Oh hello again. I know you’re about to visit me and it’s ok. I’m sure you will teach me something new about myself and my purpose here on earth so thank you ahead of time. Let’s go!”
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Lisa Hassett, Reiki Therapist, Life Coach, CYT
Healing For Body, Mind & Spirit
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Healing for Body, Mind & Spirit
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