Sometimes depression reminds me of a cardinal in summer. Who notices a cardinal in summer anyway?
They don’t stand out. Red against green in not really noticeable but a red cardinal on a white blanketed limb? Now that’s contrast. We really take notice then even though the cardinal has been around all year.
Depression is like that, subtly dwelling against an obscure background for years. In my case twelve. I can ignore it but I can’t pretend it isn’t hanging around. I catch a glimpse now and then when my mood suddenly drops or I suddenly feel anxious. That’s when I immediately put my management techniques into high gear.
I make sure that I exercise at least five days a week on my elliptical. No matter what. I’ve literally “ellipticaled” myself right out of an anxiety attack on more than one occasion.
Exercise really, really works.
Some of you are saying, “Oh, no.” Not another exercise advocate. I’m really not. I just know it works.
But the research is overwhelming.
Many studies have proven that exercising works as well and sometimes better than anti-depressants. Personally, I think it might be more than just the act of exercising itself. I think it might also be because we feel we have some control over our depression. We feel we’re doing something constructive. (Of course, it’s a heck of a lot harder than just swallowing a pill.) I have to make myself exercise as much as anyone else.
How about you? Are you willing to give exercise a try? Just walk for thirty minutes every day this week.
If you absolutely can’t make that commitment, at least move around the house for one-half hour, or wherever you are. I’m finding it difficult today myself. There is someone staying with me who is severely depressed. They are taking all my time, not to mention all my emotional energy. I’ve listened and encouraged to the point of physical exhaustion. That’s a danger signal for me.
So my strategy means, I’m making myself work-out today. Exercise is a no-brainer for me. My emotional survival is at stake.
Besides, the not-wanting-to-exercise demon wanes in comparison to my fear-of-the-depression-demon.
God bless and I hope you have a good day.
Here’s a related article by a psychiatrist I follow that I think fits in well with my post today.