Fighting depression and anxiety isn’t about willpower, it’s about creating positives in your life. When trying to lose weight they say that building muscle is more important than trying to burn fat because when you have muscle, then the muscle burns the fat. Using this principle, creating positives/strengths in your life can help you get a little control over your depression and anxiety. I’m not saying that this will cure depression or anxiety, I’m just saying that it can make it a little more bearable.
Ask yourself: “what activity do I like, find excitement in?” Is it hiking, reading, mediating…? In therapy I can help you identify ways that you re-fuel so that when you are depressed or anxious, you can access your “portal” to your own energy (that’s the best way I can describe it). In finding those things that you love doing, you find energy. For many people that energy comes from the earth (like going to the ocean, going for a hike, sitting on a patch of grass), and for some others it comes from indoor activities (reading, taking a bath, listening to music). The first step in healing yourself is finding what you like. It is easier to get yourself out of bed, or out of the house when you have excitement/positive energy. Even if you cannot participate in these activities every day, try this activity:
(1) Sit in a spot that is relaxing and safe.
(2) Close your eyes and take deep breaths.
(3) Imagine the place or the activity that gives you energy (for the sake of this example, I will use: sitting at the beach).
(4) What do you hear (birds flying by, waves crashing)?
(5) What do you see (with your imagination, seeing the sunset, the waves, a sandcastle)?
(6) What do you smell (ocean air, the taco truck on the corner, salty air)?
(7) What do you feel on your skin (warm breeze, cool breeze, the waves touching your toes)?
(8) What do you feel emotionally (calm, relaxed, happy)?
(9) Now open your eyes and take that energy with you for the day.
To make this an even better activity, try to participate in things you love at least 1-2 times per week. Then, every day, imagine this scene with your eyes closed for 30 seconds, or a minute, or 10 minutes (whatever you want).
If you are having trouble relaxing and accessing this energy, or you have trouble thinking of an activity you actually like, please call me and set up an appointment. I will help you to access this positive energy and also help you figure out things that might bring you energy.