Routine check-ups are a good thing. Whether I’m having the oil changed in my car, or I am visiting the dentist for my annual cleaning, regularly scheduled appointments help me identify potential problems.
I’ve found the same thing to be true with my thinking. Regular evaluation of my thinking goes a long way toward heading off the blues. Here are some of my favorite, free depression zappers:
There’s just something about physical movement and activity that gives me a boost.
According to WebMD (link to: http://www.webmd.com/depression/guide/exercise-depression) “When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain…Endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine.” Now that’s powerful stuff!
In addition to enhancing my mood, I’ve also found that exercise reduces my stress level, wards off anxiety, and improves my sleep.
My Creator designed me for movement. The Bible even talks about the benefits of exercise and taking care of my body (1 Timothy 4:8; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20).
Action Tip: Are you ready to give exercise a try? You can begin with a simple walking program. (*Be sure to check with your doctor first before beginning any type of exercise program.)
Make Healthy Food Choices
I have to admit desserts can be my downfall. All that sugary-goodness makes me extra-sluggish and prone to feeling lousy. When I don’t feel well, negative thinking has a way of rearing its ugly head.
A little bit of pre-planning helps me avoid this pit. Coming up with a weekly meal plan and keeping my refrigerator stocked with fresh fruits and vegetables, makes a world of difference.
Action Tip: Replace one unhealthy item in your meal plan with something nutritious.
Think on the Right Things
When I was struggling with depression several years ago, I made the discovery that I was a negative thinker. I was dwelling on the wrong things. My thought pattern revolved around “what if” and “if only” thinking.
As my mood spiraled downward, the Word of God challenged me to examine my thoughts: “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5)
This proved to be the key for me. I needed to replace my wrong thinking with thoughts that were true, honest, just, pure, and lovely. (Philippians 4:8)
Action tip: Identify wrong thinking and replace it with the truth.
Choose a Good Attitude
It may be sobering, but the truth is: I choose my attitudes. When circumstances are less than ideal it’s easy to see my proverbial glass as half empty. I begin to focus on what I don’t have, rather than all I’ve been given.
When I evaluate the bigger picture, the reality is that my glass is actually full and yes, even overflowing. Every situation is an opportunity to trust God to mold and shape me into the person I’m supposed to be. And to share my abundance with others.
Action tip: See your glass as full and choose a good attitude today.
Throw a Praise Party
Sometimes it feels good to grumble. When I get my eyes off God’s perfect provision, and begin comparing my life with that of others, the complaints begin bubbling to the surface. But what does my complaining accomplish? Nothing constructive. In fact, it causes me to fall into a full-blown pity-party.
When I choose to be grateful for all God has done in my life, I’m able to throw a praise party instead. And this is one event that’s able to lift the spirits of all those who are invited.
“O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.” (Psalm 136:1)
Action tip: Read Psalm 136 and praise the Lord.
Next time the blues come calling, use these five tools to help zap depression and make your get-away!
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for giving me tools to battle the blues. Help me choose to do the things that will allow me to live victoriously. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Maria I. Morgan is an inspirational writer and speaker. She loves sharing the truths of God’s Word with today’s generation. You can download a complimentary copy of her eBook, God Speaking, on her website: www.mariaimorgan.com. Connect with her on:
I am so glad you dropped by today!
Join me again at ‘Depression Getaway’ and together we will…
…live, care, laugh, share, learn, discover, forgive and recover.
Don’t give up, I’m praying for you!