Thursday, September 15, 2011

My Six Pick-Me-Ups

A little sadness strikes everyone once in a while. Being unemployed, I find it follows me around everywhere. Recently, its affected me a lot because I'm moving to San Diego so I've had to stop the job search, not to mention my car situation is a mess. Anyways. Here are some easy things that curb depression for me, in no particular order. These little pick-me-ups could work for you too. :)

1. Coffee. There is nothing like waking up in the early morning and making a fantastic cup o' joe. The smell of it sets my heart aflutter. No really, I love coffee. Not just for the taste, but it wakes me up and starts my day off right. I CAN go without a cup if I have too, and my day isn't guaranteed to be shitty, but there's something about it that makes me feel happy. I'm sure its part taste, part ambiance. I love the sensation of pretending I'm the first person up in the whole city. It's so quiet and peaceful out still, people haven't gone to work yet. I can sit out on the porch or cuddle on the couch and drink my coffee to the few sounds of nature I can actually get here in Miami. Sometimes I pretend I'm back in Pennsylvania sitting on my parents back deck, facing the woods, where there's never any city noise and its pure, blissful nature.

2. Exercise. I used to hate this word. One day I decided enough was enough. I wanted to lose weight, I wanted to feel healthy, and I wanted to NOT sit on the couch and be depressed all the time. I started by walking my dog. And then doing Zumba at home. And then running. I switch it up every now and again. I've lost 29 pounds. I don't exercise 7 days a week, but when I do go out for a walk or a run, I feel better for the rest of the day. It's not like I discovered this, its proven. It makes you feel good! And the benefits are longterm. Go for a walk with your dog, or just get out of the house and take a stroll through the park. It's bound to make you feel better. Again, not rocket science.

3. Singing in the shower. This is one that I know most people do already, but I had to list it. It is, by far, one of the most pleasurable acts to keep my blues at bay. It's even better when the house is empty and I can turn the volume up on my Zune to its highest. And then I sing my heart out. Lately I've been singing Fleetwood Mac, but it changes from day to day. I don't pretend that the shower head is a microphone, but I sometimes dance while I'm in there too. It's so much fun. I usually look forward to showers in the morning.

4. Read a good book. I spend most of my time these days reading. Right now I'm reading George R.R. Martin's A Song of Fire and Ice series. It keeps me happy because I become immersed in an entirely fictional world where I can worry about the characters problems instead of my own. Simple.

5. Be around people who make you laugh. Once again, as easy as this sounds, often times I can slip into a funk and avoid people. I've done it plenty of times, but all I end up accomplishing is a deeper state of melancholy. I've learned that when people invite me out, and I really don't feel like it, that means I should! So even if I force myself, I end up so much happier.

6. Don't take yourself too seriously. This one was taught to me by my boyfriend, James. His sense of humor is infectious, but when I'm in a bad mood for no reason, he'll tell me to lighten up. At first it used to annoy the hell out of me, but over time I came to learn that he is right. Life is short, and if I can take myself a little less seriously, I can start eliminating my stress.

Even though these seem really easy, when it comes to putting some of them into action I sometimes fall short. I remind myself everyday that exercising, being around others, and not taking myself so seriously are choices I have to make. I can't always expect things to come easy. Happiness is a choice, and its in the choices we make for ourselves.

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