Did you know that 1 in 10 Americans suffer from depression? Many of the factors that lead to depression stem from unemployment, lack of health insurance, etc., according to psychologist Gregory L. Jantz. With difficult times comes the inability to face them head-on. Maintaining balance in difficult times is critical in keeping the depression at bay.
Per Dr. Jantz, “Unfortunately, those topics have dominated headlines for the past five years. What’s worse, by 2020, the World Health Organization estimates depression will be second most debilitating disease worldwide.”
With May being Mental Health Awareness Month, I thought I would share with you four (4) tips for maintaining balance in difficult times based on author Dr. Gregory L. Jantz book, “Overcoming Anxiety, Worry, and Fear”.
“By purposefully feeding the intellectual, relational, physical, and spiritual aspects of your life positive emotions, you can achieve balance,” Jantz says.
• Intellectual: Be aware of what you’re feeding to your mind. Try reading a positive, uplifting book, and setting aside time in your day to fill yourself up intellectually with constructive, encouraging messages. Be aware of what you are reading and listening to, and seek to counter the negative input we all get with positive influences.
• Relational: Think of a person you really enjoy talking to, someone who makes you feel good about yourself or someone who’s just fun to be around. Plan today to spend time with that person this week, even if it’s just for a moment or two. Make the effort to verbalize your appreciation for his or her positive presence in your day.
• Physical: Physical activity is a wonderful way of promoting emotional health. Engage in some mild exercise this week. Take a walk around the neighborhood. Stroll through a city park. The goals are to get your body moving and to allow you to focus on something other than yourself and your surroundings. Greet your neighbors, stop at the park and watch someone playing with his dog, or cheer at a Little League game. Intentionally open up your focus to include the broader world around you.
• Spiritual Support: Take some time to nourish your spirit. If you are a member of a religious organization, make sure to attend services this week. If you are not, listen to some religious or meditative music. Spend time in quiet reflection, meditation, or prayer. Intentionally engage in an activity that replenishes and reconnects your spirit.
What do you do to cope with difficulty in your life?
For more information about Dr. Jantz and his clinic, visit A Place for Hope.