Yesterday I wrote about why it's okay to have down days and while I think it's okay every once and a while, for a little while, it's also REALLY important to get past that.
While I was away on the weekend, my grandma packed up the house she lived in with my grandpa for literally decades. I cannot even begin to imagine how hard that must have been.
Getting rid of stuff, leaving things behind, and physically leaving the space where so many years of happiness were shared. Phew, emotional much!
But, what a trooper and what an inspiration.
She packed it all up, she let me and my mum boss her into letting stuff go, and she is just getting on with it.
THAT is how you really get past the hard times.
It's okay to feel a little (or a lot) down.
It's okay to embrace it.
It's okay to hide away for a day or two and allow those feelings to wash over you.
But then you have to let it go.
Get back up, and move on with life. It doesn't mean that you forget what you've been through, but that life will continue with or without you, and we owe it to ourselves to live the best way we can and keep pushing on.
So, in saying that it's okay to be a little blue, I mean only for a little while. There is too much to get on with to let it take you down.
And that is the main reason for this follow up post. I know that depression is a SERIOUS issue (not taken seriously enough sometimes) and so this isn't about mental illness because often times professional help is the only answer.
Having said that, I've been prescribed medication in the past and chosen to try as many things possible to avoid having to take it. Just be aware of yourself, your health, your ability to cope, and gauge it!
A lot of the every day down in the dumps feelings can be a attributed to work overload, stress, not enough sleep, illness, overwhelm, misdirected priorities, and focusing on 'busyness'.
I think adults (women especially) have developed an excellent talent for persisting and wearing ourselves down through work, relationships, social engagements, children, and life in general.
Sometimes it's worth just stopping, re-evaluating, resting and working out a new plan of action.
And, with that, I have an epic list of ways to cheer yourself (or loved ones) up to get out of the hole. It IS possible (I know, cos I've done it)
Here are 20 of my best but please feel free to contribute!
- Take yourself out for the day or away f, do something special and really appreciate it (sometimes we do stuff and forget to acknowledge it)
- Make a date with a loved one (one-on-one time can be the best mood lifter)
- Break the diet and indulge in a little treat that you love (it doesn't have to be over the top, just something small that you love)
- Put your favourite music on and dance around the house (get that blood pumping)
- Go for a walk, sit in a park, just get some fresh air and sun light (there is really nothing better)
- Smile or laugh with every ounce of your strength (facial expressions can actually determine your mood, crazy but true)
- Get out of the house (sometimes when you're down, it's the last thing you want to do)
- Make a list of all the things that you love in your life and are grateful for
- Skype or call someone who always makes you smile
- Work out what you aren't enjoying in life and if you can change or fix it
- Take your mum/grandma/niece/sister out for the day and treat them (doing something nice for another person is an amazing feeling)
- Go to a dance class, high impact gym class, or yoga (the movement and energy of the room will do wonders)
- Go offline for a weekend (no email, social media, or anything. Step away and disconnect)
- Get creative (draw, paint, colour in, write in a journal)
- Go to the beach (breathe in the salty air and the calming waves)
- Get together with a group of friends for a fun night out (it might be the last thing you want to do, but you won't regret it)
- Spread some love (send letters to friends, buy someone a present, do a random act of kindness)
- Get your meditation on – i.e. sit quietly and push away your thoughts (it is hard at first but so calming)
- Try some clean eating with lots of leafy greens, fruit and veggies (your insides will be so happy)
- Take a moment each day to enjoy the little things. Even if you can pinpoint just one thing to be happy about, it will be worthwhile!
I would love to hear what you think about these suggestions. Have you got your own 'cheer up' tips?
Leave a comment below or share this with anyone who could do with a little extra happiness!