Even though we are in the middle of our “Getting Back to Basics” theme, I couldn’t help but post this piece in honor of a friend of mine who’s going through a crappy ass time. In some form or another we ALL can relate to times in our life that just completely and utterly suck.
I’m not referring to a fight with your BFF or maybe a broken / stolen iPhone. I’m talking about death, illness, divorce – ya know – the biggies.
Therefore, we’re going to take a small intermission and dedicate this post as one big giant hug to all those that are going through a hard time. (and if you DO have a broken iPhone, this can apply to you as well )
1. TV / Hulu / Netflix Become Life Saviors:
Distraction is magical. I know, my Psychology major friends will tell me that avoiding your problems by numbing your brain is bad (and I do agree) – but I know from first- hand experience that when the pain is unbearable, sometimes you just need Ross and Rachel from Friends to take your mind to another place.
2. With Friends like These Who Needs Enemies?
My mom used to tell me this when I was in grade school and had a hard time making friends with my classmates. (it took me about 10 years to understand what the phrase meant). We all have our BFF’s and our Besties etc. But sadly, sometimes when we go through a difficult period, those friends are not there for us. Not out of spite, but your BFF might not be able to be there for you in the way you need. Maybe they don’t understand, maybe they’re too busy for your venting / crying sessions, or even worse – maybe they end up saying things to make you feel worse than you did before. My point is that it WILL happen that those friends that you would swear you can count on – you can’t. (This goes for family as well)
This brings me to my next point
3. Just Where You Least Expect …
The beautiful thing about life’s challenges and difficulties is that we find love and support where we least expect it. When I was going through a hard time a while back – I ran into an old acquaintance from school. We were never close (we shared friends at most) but into our conversation I found out that this person went through a similar experience as me, and she turned out to be the BEST supportive friend ever. She was my rock when no one else understood what I was going through.
You never know who will be in your support group – and don’t be surprised if it turns out to be some random person
4. Don’t forget to talk to G-d.
I recommend this LIGHTLY.
Sometimes when pain is just THAT painful, crying out to G-d is too difficult. It means facing the demons head on and it can be overwhelming. Having said that – if you do feel like you just want to let it all out, I’m sure G-d has some time on his schedule to listen (just be forewarned that crying it all out can be very draining … and possibly therapeutic)
5. Let the Sun shine in
I wonder if it’s been scientifically proven, but I believe that it’s difficult to feel depressed when you’re sitting outside in the sunlight. (I know, I’ve tried it) Just something about the warm sun on your face … even if it doesn’t lift your sprits much, at least you will be getting Vitamin D which keep your body strong. (So either way, it’s a win-win)
6. Eating Healthy is not Easy but Crucial
When you’re going through a rough time – the LAST thing you want to do is stand in your kitchen cutting lettuce and cucumbers. You want pasta, cereal, cookies, and maybe a tub of ice cream. More than ever, eating healthy during a “crisis” is crucial. Why? Because with great stress comes great havoc on our physiological bodies. Our cortisol levels are up and down (our stress hormone) – our immune system is compromised, and we are more susceptible to getting sick. (ever see those annoying Depression commercials – where they say “where does Depression hurt?” – because mental / emotional anguish leads to physical anguish)
My recommendation? Get someone to make you a huge pot of soup and freeze it – so when you’re feeling a shade of blue, you can just warm it up and have some comfort food. If someone asks you what they can do for you (and generally during times of crisis people offer this) ask them for a home cooked meal. (whenever I got sick, my good friend Mrs. S. always sent me hot meals because she was smart enough to realize that I needed nutritious food!!)
7. Herbs Herbs and more herbs
And here we come to the apex of our discussion.
(notice how I used the word “herbs” instead.) Why? (I’m so happy you asked)
Because if there is anything I’m adamantly against – it’s the usage of Anti Depressants. I know for some people they have been considered “life saviors” and people have positive experiences with these meds, but it is my opinion that they are terrible. (just my opinion) They are so bad for our bodies (and minds!) for so many reasons, it would take me 5 blog posts just to list them all!
This is the part where I tell you that there are NATURAL and HEALTHY and SAFE (key word – SAFE) alternatives to anti- depressants. These are herbs that calm the body, calm the mind, but at the same time allow it to function normally – so you don’t feel loopy, or high, (sorry for those who enjoy the high ) or like a different person. My hubby always tells me that the people he knew who were on anti depressants – they weren’t the same person anymore. It literally changed their personality. These are herbs you can find at your local health food store – but of course – I advise asking a Doctor before taking to make sure you take the correct dosage.
Well, that’s my “virtual hug” to my dear friend who’s going through a hard time. And like I said in my opener – if this helps you get through your stolen iPhone crisis, well then mission accomplished!