Depression in Today's Society

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Depression is described as anger turned inwards or the ability or inability to feel anything positive about anything. Although there are a variety of causes of depression, some situational, some biological,  this illness affects society in so many different ways that it needs to be addressed in a timely manner.

In today's society in the modern world there are many situational causes of depression. Wars, politics, poverty, disease, hunger...  all of these can take a toll on the general well-being of humanity in general. Many people feel horrible about what has been going on in the world and many feel helpless and paralyzed in its wake. 

The good news is that there is a lot that can be done to treat depression, even if the world situation isn't optimal. Although there are many different problems one can point to in the world, developing meaningful experiences in life no matter how small can be one way that society can combat depression on an individual and societal level. Life is precious and although many parts of the media and an elsewhere underscore the movement of negativity, the positive in people is coming out like never before.

People are more accepting of people with depression than they have been in the past and are willing to understand it more. Stigma is not as great as it used to be towards depression as more and more people are suffering from this illness. Traditional and newer means of treating depression are becoming more available and those who suffer from depression can expect to be treated respectfully rather than many times in the past where they were seen as weak or defective.

Although there is a lot of negativity that surrounds depression,  one of the true methods that works in the treatment of depression is to engage in activities that you do enjoy, used to enjoy, or might enjoy regardless of how you feel about them before you do them. In this way when you go about your regular routines and activities, alone or with friends, family, or mental health professionals you will see that life isn't so bad and that it can be enjoyed after all.

By the way, if you need any support regarding you as an individual or with your relationship, feel free to contact us today to learn how we can help.

 

6 Ways To Calm Anxiety

Racing thoughts and a horrible, terrible feeling that something bad is going to happen? It's anxiety and you're not alone. Most of us deal with anxiety in one form or another, at some point in our lives. Thankfully, there are some ways you can control it. In the following paragraphs, we're going to break down six ways you can help calm your anxiety. 

Write about it:

Although it may feel awkward at first, journaling is a great way to get out your feelings and express yourself. You don't have to show anyone, so don't worry about proof reading or spelling. Just jot down what's bugging you. Sometimes you'll find that once it's out on paper, it doesn't seem like such a big deal.

Talk It Out:

Discuss your feelings with a good friend or counselor. Sometimes just putting our thoughts into words makes it seem easier to handle. Plus, the person you speak with may have some ideas about what you can do to work through your problems. 

Get Exercise:

Sure, it can be hard to start this one if you're not used to moving your body, but we guarantee it will be worth it. Once you get moving, those endorphins kick in and make everything seem easier to handle. 

Use Fragrance:

Essential oils like lavender and peppermint can be great for stress relief and relaxation. Try putting a small amount on your temples or use an oil warmer to fill your entire home with a calming scent. 

Avoid Caffeine:

Although coffee always seems like a good idea, it can usually make stress and anxiety worse. If you need a warm beverage, try instead some herbal tea with a little milk. 

Avoid Alcohol:

Sometimes we just want to escape and alcohol seems like the perfect way to do it. But, in the morning, you're going to feel a lot worse and the same feelings will still be there. They may even be worse, especially if you're dealing with regret from the way you acted while intoxicated. 

Anxiety is hard to handle. Try the tips above, but if you still need help or someone to talk to, we're here for you at Albuquerque Family Counseling. Contact us if you have any questions or to schedule an appointment.

By the way, if you need any support regarding you as an individual or with your relationship, feel free to contact us today to learn how we can help.

Mindfulness: Living in the Moment

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The ding of your phone as emails come in, planning tomorrow's activities or worrying over past mistakes, our minds are often battlegrounds of thoughts and information competing for our attention. This constant state of mental racing can leave us drained, anxious, and stressed. You've probably heard "mindfulness" mentioned as an alternative approach to dealing with the noise of our lives. But what does being mindful mean?

What is Mindfulness?

In Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation In Everyday Life, Jon Kabat-Zinn defined mindfulness as "paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally." Mindfulness is a form of meditation that focuses our minds to what is happening right now and choosing to not pass judgment on whatever thoughts or emotions arise.

Benefits of Mindfulness

Practicing meditation has multiple benefits, including helping to alleviate stress, anxiety, pain, depression, and even insomnia. Mindfulness in particular is also being explored for potential benefits to military personnel with traumatic brain injuries and even as treatment for internet gaming disorder. Potential applications for mindfulness are still being discovered, such as in the workplace to help avoid job burnout and work-related stress.

Practicing Mindfulness

What does mindfulness look like in practice? While there are many ways to be mindful, here are a few approaches to get started:

  • Raisin Exercise – Take a raisin in your hand and encounter it as if you've never seen one before. How does it look? How does it feel? Pop it in your mouth. How does it taste? Slowly chew while focusing on the experience. By focusing on the raisin, you are forcing your mind to be present in the moment.

  • Mindful Breathing – Breathe in and out slowly, in through your nose and out through your mouth. Pay attention as the breath goes in and out, giving your body life. Let your thoughts flow out with each breath.

  • Body Scan – Lie flat on your back. Close your eyes if this helps you focus. Become aware of where your body is pushing against the floor. Starting at the bottom of your feet, slowly bring your attention to each part of your body until you reach the top of your head.

Mindfulness is a simple practice to bring into your life with multiple potential benefits. Give mindfulness a try and experience the restfulness of living in the moment.

By the way, if you need any support regarding you as an individual or with your relationship, feel free to contact us today to learn how we can help.