Wednesday, February 28, 2024

How To Handle Stress And Depression

How To Relax Your Mind From Stress Fast

How to Manage Stress, Anxiety & Depression Naturally

For example, if you think that you cant accept or handle depression, you will naturally be very stressed out about depression. Similarly, if you think that you cant accept or handle losing a job, you will naturally be very stressed out about your job loss.

This type of thinking is extremely stressful, because if you think that you cant accept or handle certain things, you feel powerless and helpless to do anything about them. Indeed, you feel completely vulnerable to something you automatically assume is bad in some way.

So guess what happens? Your mind keeps trying to warn you about this potential danger that you presumably cant accept or handle.

For example, if you think you cant accept or handle depression, your mind will repeatedly remind you that youre depressed, because it thinks that this is an important danger for you to consider. For similar reasons, your mind will repeatedly remind you about a job loss you think you cant accept or handle.

In such a way, you become perpetually stressed, and the stress has a negative effect on your life.

Fortunately, you can learn how to relax when stressed very quickly, just by learning how to get rid of the stressful, negative thought that you cant accept or handle whatever youre dealing with at the moment.

Tip : Get A Daily Dose Of Sunlight

Sunlight can help boost serotonin levels and improve your mood. Whenever possible, get outside during daylight hours and expose yourself to the sun for at least 15 minutes a day. Remove sunglasses and use sunscreen as needed.

  • Take a walk on your lunch break, have your coffee outside, enjoy an al fresco meal, or spend time gardening.
  • Double up on the benefits of sunlight by exercising outside. Try hiking, walking in a local park, or playing golf or tennis with a friend.
  • Increase the amount of natural light in your home and workplace by opening blinds and drapes and sitting near windows.
  • If you live somewhere with little winter sunshine, try using a light therapy box.

Tip : Practice The 4 As Of Stress Management

While stress is an automatic response from your nervous system, some stressors arise at predictable times: your commute to work, a meeting with your boss, or family gatherings, for example. When handling such predictable stressors, you can either change the situation or change your reaction. When deciding which option to choose in any given scenario, its helpful to think of the four As: avoid, alter, adapt, or accept.

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Physical Disease In The Brain

Emotional disorders in general and depression in particular can occur due to physical diseases in the brain . Structural damage to the brain can lower stress tolerance. Therefore, even a small impact can cause depression and other common mental disorders.

In this case, determining the cause is essential. Because if correctly identified, the disease can be treated thoroughly, avoiding affecting the patients quality of life, reducing the burden on the family and society.

Identify And Learn To Manage Your Triggers

Tips To Deal With Depression

You can identify triggers on your own or with a therapist. Sometimes they can be obvious, like caffeine, drinking alcohol, or smoking. Other times they can be less obvious.

Long-term problems, such as financial or work-related situations, may take some time to figure out is it a due date, a person, or the situation? This may take some extra support, through therapy or with friends.

When you do figure out your trigger, you should try to limit your exposure if you can. If you cant limit it like if its due to a stressful work environment that you cant currently change using other coping techniques may help.

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What You Eat And Drink Can Also Affect How You Feel

Theres no magic diet that will treat depression. But what you put into your body can have a real and significant impact on the way you feel.

Eating a diet rich in lean meats, vegetables, and grains may be a great place to start. Try to limit stimulants like caffeine, coffee, and soda, and depressants like alcohol.

Some people also and have more energy when they avoid sugar, preservatives, and processed foods.

If you have the means, consider meeting with a doctor or registered dietitian for guidance.

How Can I Identify The Signs Of Stress

Everyone experiences stress. However, when it is affecting your life, health and wellbeing, it is important to tackle it as soon as possible, and while stress affects everyone differently, there are common signs and symptoms you can look out for:15

  • feelings of constant worry or anxiety
  • feelings of being overwhelmed

For full details on tips on getting a good nights sleep read our guide How to sleep better and ten top tips for good sleep

7. Dont be too hard on yourself
  • Try to keep things in perspective.
  • Remember that having a bad day is a universal human experience
  • When your inner critic or an outer critic finds faults, try and find truth and exception to what is being said
  • If you stumble or feel you have failed, dont beat yourself up
  • Act as if you were your own best friend: be kind and supportive
  • Take a few minutes each day to appreciate yourself

Now, we would like to move on to a more detailed look at the causes and effects of stress. In this section we will focus on the effects prolonged stress has on your body, behaviour and emotions, and look at key causes such as relationships, money, work, alcohol and drug use.

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What Is Samhsa’s National Helpline

SAMHSAs National Helpline, , or TTY: is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service, in English and Spanish, for individuals and family members facing mental and/or substance use disorders. This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support groups, and community-based organizations. Callers can also order free publications and other information.

Also visit the online treatment locator.

How To Get Over Stress By Improving Your Thinking

HOW TO : COPE WITH DEPRESSION & ANXIETY

If you think about things negatively, you will definitely experience more stress in your life. For this reason, its very important that you stop ruminating and replaying negative thoughts in your head, since this is what actually creates the stress and worrying.

To fully appreciate how much the way you think about things matters, consider how you can become extremely stressed about losing your job, or feel completely calm and relaxed about it, depending entirely on how you think about this situation.

If you think thoughts like Im a loser, because I lost my job, or Ill never be able to pay my bills and survive, or Losing my job was the worst thing that could have happened to me, youll naturally experience a great deal of stress and worry about things.

On the other hand, if you think thoughts like Im a great person, even if I lost my job, and One way or another Ill find a way to pay my bills and survive, and Losing my job could be a blessing in disguise, since it opens up other opportunities for me, youll naturally feel more calm and relaxed and worry-free.

The important point here, is that how you think about things matters a great deal, and ultimately determines whether you will feel stressed or not. So if youre feeling stressed, changing your thinking is how to be stress free and happy very fast.

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Try Supplements Or Change Your Diet

Changing your diet or taking supplements is definitely a long-term strategy. Research shows certain supplements or nutrients can help anxiety reduction.

These include:

  • kava kava
  • dark chocolate

However, it can take up to three months before your body is actually running on the nutrition these herbs and foods provide. If youre taking other medications, make sure to discuss herbal remedies with your doctor.

Anxiety And Depression: What Are The Possible Links

Although clearly not identical emotional states, mental health research suggests that depression and anxiety often coexist because they can be caused by the same or similar factors. According to an article published May 2020 in the American Journal of Psychiatry, those overlapping causes can include:

  • Genetic Factors Genetic factors contribute to 40 percent of the predisposition to depressive and anxious symptoms, with 60 percent being attributed to environmental, noninherited factors. “Especially with anxiety, more so than depression, there often is some family history, and so therefore we think that there may be some genetic predisposition to this,” Connolly explains.
  • Environmental Factors Also referred to as social factors, these include experiences like trauma or neglect in early childhood, and current stressors such as relationship difficulties, unemployment, social isolation, and physical illness. People who have post-traumatic stress disorder , an anxiety disorder, are particularly likely to also develop depression, according to the National Institute of Mental Health .
  • Pain Chronic pain, and particularly disabling pain syndromes such as fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome , low back pain, headaches, and nerve pain, are closely linked to psychological distress, including both anxiety and depression, notes Harvard Health. In fact, they say, research suggests that pain shares some biological mechanisms with anxiety and depression.

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People With Social Anxiety Don’t Want To Be Alone

2. Worry vs. Problem Solving

Worrying is repetitive and unproductive, but it can often feel like youre working through problems. Real problem solving, in contrast, is a focused way of finding solutions. When youre worrying today, figure out whether theres an actual problem to solve or if your mind is simply spinning its wheels. Then aim to redirect your mental energy toward productive problem-solving.

3. Find Strength

When you find yourself hoping for an easy, problem-free day, shift your focus to how youll respond. Say to yourself, May I find strength to meet every challenge. May I find courage to face whatever comes my way. May I find grace in all I do. Problems are inevitable. How you handle them is up to you.

4. Define Your Best Life

When youre tempted to avoid something today because of anxiety, ask yourself what kind of life you want to have lived. One defined by fear and avoidance? One where you played it safe, even when it meant missing out on things you cared about? Or a life of defying fear and inertia to do what mattered to you? Plan to take one action today that your future self will thank you for.

5. Take the Wheel

6. Love Conquers Fear

7. Change the Conversation

8. Face Your Fears

9. Move Through Procrastination

10. Maximize Outdoor Time

11. Practice Kindness

12. Can I Open to This?

Dealing With The Winter Blues

Tips to Manage Anxiety and Stress

For some people, the reduced daylight hours of winter lead to a form of depression known as seasonal affective disorder . SAD can make you feel like a completely different person to who you are in the summer: hopeless, sad, tense, or stressed, with no interest in friends or activities you normally love. No matter how hopeless you feel, though, there are plenty of things you can do to keep your mood stable throughout the year.

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Can Anxiety And Depression Be Treated Together

Yes. No one has to suffer from anxiety disorder or depression, and certainly not both. People with anxiety disorder should speak with a psychiatrist, therapist, or other healthcare professional about their symptoms and start treatment as soon as possible. If you suspect you have both anxiety and depression, Connolly recommends getting a thorough evaluation from a psychiatrist as a first step. “It’s really crucial for people with both to have a good assessment to rule out bipolar disorder,” she says.

Important: If you or someone you know needs help coping with anxiety or depression, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK . The Crisis Text Line also provides free, 24/7, confidential support via text message to people in crisis when they text to 741741.

How Can You Help Yourself

Stress is a natural reaction to many situations in life, such as work, family, relationships and money problems.

We mentioned earlier on that a moderate amount of stress can help us perform better in challenging situations,34 but too much or prolonged stress can lead to physical problems. This can include lower immunity levels,35 digestive and intestinal difficulties, e.g. irritable bowel syndrome ,36 or mental health problems such as depression.37 It is therefore important that we manage our stress and keep it at a healthy level to prevent long-term damage to our bodies and minds.

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If Youre Up For Exercise Consider A Walk Around The Block

On days when you feel as if you cant get out of bed, exercise may seem like the last thing youd want to do. However, exercise and physical activity can be powerful depression fighters.

Research suggests that, for some people, exercise can be as effective as medication at relieving depression symptoms. It may also help prevent future depressive episodes.

If youre able to, take a walk around the block. Start with a five-minute walk and work your way up from there.

Sleep disturbances are common with depression. You may not sleep well, or you may sleep too much. Both can make depression symptoms worse.

Aim for eight hours of sleep per night. Try to get into ahealthy sleeping routine.

Going to bed and waking up at the same time every day can help you with your daily schedule. Getting the proper amount of sleep may also help you feel more balanced and energized throughout your day.

How To Get Rid Of Stress And Depression

Coping with Stress, Anxiety, and Depression

Stress and depression go hand in hand. Indeed, if you are dealing with stress on a regular basis, you are more likely to become depressed.

Think about it: the more stressed you are, the less you enjoy life. Also, the more stressed you are, the less peace of mind you have, and this interferes with the quality of your sleep, leaving you feeling perpetually fatigued, frazzled, and easily irritated.

All of this contributes to depression. For this reason, if you want to be happier and depression-free, its important that you learn how to eliminate stress, which has an adverse affect on your well-being.

Right now youre going to learn how to reduce stress naturally, without any drugs, pills, or medications. This is how to handle stress in the best way possible.

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Or Spend Time With Loved Ones

Depression can tempt you to isolate yourself and withdraw from your friends and family, but face-to-face time can help wash away those tendencies.

If youre unable to spend time together in person, phone calls or video chats can also be helpful.

Try to remind yourself these people care about you. Resist the temptation to feel like youre a burden. You need the interaction and they likely do, too.

When you do the same thing day after day, you use the same parts of your brain. You can challenge your neurons and alter your brain chemistry by doing something entirely different.

Research also shows doing new things can improve your overall well-being and strengthen your social relationships.

To reap these benefits, consider trying a new sport, taking a creative class, or learning a new cooking technique.

Knock out a few birds with one stone spending time with other people and doing something new by volunteering and giving your time to someone or something else.

You may be used to receiving help from friends, but reaching out and providing help may actually improve your mental health more.

Bonus: People who volunteer experience physical benefits, too. This includes a reduced risk of hypertension.

When you do something you love, or even when you find a new activity you enjoy, you may be able to boost your mental health more by taking time to be thankful for it.

Research shows gratitude can have lasting positive effects on your overall mental health.

Why Is Dealing With Depression So Difficult

Depression drains your energy, hope, and drive, making it difficult to take the steps that will help you to feel better. Sometimes, just thinking about the things you should do to feel better, like exercising or spending time with friends, can seem exhausting or impossible to put into action.

Its the Catch-22 of depression recovery: The things that help the most are the things that are the most difficult to do. There is a big difference, however, between something thats difficult and something thats impossible. While recovering from depression isnt quick or easy, you do have more control than you realizeeven if your depression is severe and stubbornly persistent. The key is to start small and build from there. You may not have much energy, but by drawing on all your reserves, you should have enough to take a walk around the block or pick up the phone to call a loved one, for example.

Taking the first step is always the hardest. But going for a walk or getting up and dancing to your favorite music, for example, is something you can do right now. And it can substantially boost your mood and energy for several hourslong enough to put a second recovery step into action, such as preparing a mood-boosting meal or arranging to meet an old friend. By taking the following small but positive steps day by day, youll soon lift the heavy fog of depression and find yourself feeling happier, healthier, and more hopeful again.

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