My Mental Health Is Just As Important as My Physical Health
Why can’t I take care of myself when I’m depressed?
Looking after yourself, or self-care, is vital to physical, emotional and mental well-being. At its most basic, self-care is the ability to handle daily requirements like eating, sleeping, and grooming. It’s also about identifying your unique needs for well-being and taking steps to meet them—like making the time to do things that nurture you, as well as activities that keep you healthy. remember when my depression was at its worst, I slept for hours on end, hardly moving my body at all. I set a goal of just turning over from one side of the bed to the other, then trying to sit up in bed for a while. Those goals were not easy to reach, but they paved the way to bigger ones.
Within days, I was out of bed
Sometimes, just stay in bed
There’ll be days when you just don’t think you can get up. And that’s OK to have every once in a while.
Take a mental health day. Take time for yourself.
My mental health is just as important as my physical health!
If I’m feeling especially depressed, I can take the day off as if I had a fever or the flu.
Don’t beat yourself up. Be gentle with yourself. Allow yourself to take the day off if need be.
Depression presents so many challenges
I’ve been living with depression for so long that I feel like I’ve gone through every symptom the condition has to offer.
Hopelessness, fatigue, insomnia, weight gain, weight loss…..
Living with depression is hard, no matter what symptoms you’re experiencing. Sometimes, just the act of getting out of bed can seem like such a major hurdle that you’re not sure how everyone does it every day.
And if you’re like me, sleep disturbances are a common symptom. I’ve even managed to simultaneously experience insomnia and hypersomnia (sleeping too much).
Although I’m using medication, working with a therapist, and practicing other helpful techniques that get me through the day right now,
sometimes the biggest undertaking is starting the day.
Create a morning routine worth waking up for
Many people — myself included — get stuck in a routine of dragging themselves out of bed to get to work… and that’s it. We barely have time for breakfast in our routine. We’re just trying to get out the door.
But if you create a morning routine worth waking up for, you may have a different outlook for your morning.
1. Start slow: Sit up
Start with the basics: Just try to sit up. Push your pillows up, and maybe have an extra pillow stashed nearby to prop yourself up.
Sometimes just the act of sitting up can get you closer to getting up, getting ready, and starting your day.
2. What’s for breakfast? Start thinking food
Thinking about food or your first cup of coffee can be great motivation. If your stomach starts grumbling enough while you’re forcing yourself to think about eggs, bacon, and French toast, you’ll be more likely to pull yourself up.
This doesn’t always work, though, especially if you’re experiencing a loss of appetite from depression. Still, know that eating something in the morning — even if it’s just a slice of bread — will help you get up.
Plus, if you take medications in the morning, it’s usually a good idea to have something in your stomach.
3. Don’t disregard the classics — try an alarm
Go back to the classics. Set an alarm — or a whole slurry of annoying alarms — and put your phone or clock out of your reach.
You’ll have to get up to shut it off. While it’s easy to just climb into bed again, if you have multiple alarms set, by the third one you’ll probably just be like, “FINE! I’M UP!”
4. Focus on what’s around you
Paper and pens may seem old-fashioned, but the affect they have definitely isn’t. Consider writing down something you’re grateful for every day. Or even better, do this at night and reread your gratitude in the morning. Reminding yourself about the positives in your life can start your day a little better.
Another option is to focus on your pets, which have shown to provide many benefits. They can be a great motivation for waking up in the morning, whether it’s feeding, walking, or cuddling with them.
Spending just a few minutes being unconditionally loved by your pet can have an overwhelming positive effect on your mood.
5. Get yourself motivated with routine
Don’t rush yourself to get up and get ready and take all the pleasure out of the morning. You can also try using other forms of motivation to get up, like your phone.
Let yourself check your email or watch a cute animal video to start your day. Just to ensure that you’re not staying on your phone all morning in bed, set a timer. Keep it around 15 minutes for phone time. Another option is to place your phone out of reach so you have to get up to use it.
Remember, give yourself time to create a routine you’ll enjoy
If you start to look at your morning in a more gentle and positive way, you may not just think of it as having to get up and do this or that.
- Small enjoyable acts
Make a cup of coffee or tea and sit outside for even just 10 minutes.
Do some gentle yoga stretches.
Use a morning meditation to start your day in a more peaceful and mindful way.
Eat your breakfast while listening to music that makes you feel more positive, awake, or calm.
Learn to enjoy your morning self-care. It’s just another thing you can do to help manage your depression and get through your day www.healthline.com