Absolute psychiatric / medical professionals and people specializing in mental health sometimes feel helpless and need help as patients.
“We have the same problems as our patients,” admitted David D. Burns, a clinical psychiatrist and author of the hit book on psychology “Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy,” in an interview with the Huff Post. This mostly means dealing with negative thoughts, anxiety and a bad mood. http://www.huffpost.com http://www.feelinggood.com
So what does a therapist – usually a counselor when it comes to these types of problems – do when depressed? The said portal spoke with Burns and several other experts to get the best possible advice. We bring their tricks for those days when you just don’t feel well.
- Rule of 30 seconds
If you feel pressured by a task, a job, a conflict, a to-do list – and it completely sabotages your mood – try to solve only a small part of it, Burns advises. “What I choose has to be something I can complete in about 30 seconds; that way I can’t find an excuse to procrastinate, ”he explained.
For example, Burns said he felt particularly buried in the piles of paper on his desk that day, so he immediately put his method into practice. It took him 30 seconds – during a conversation with a journalist – to fold a few pieces of paper, staple them together and put them neatly in his cardboard.
It’s ridiculously simple, but Burns said he immediately felt a significant improvement in mood. “You feel a little encouraged every time you do that,” the clinical psychiatrist added.
- Practice deep breathing
This advice is rightly the oldest trick in the professional literature. According to Habib Sadeghi, a holistic health expert and author of The Clarity Cleanse, a few deep breaths can activate your parasympathetic nervous system, the part of the entire nervous system that is responsible for lowering heart rate and blood pressure.
A few deep breaths is also “a way to get out of the head into the body,” Sadeghi said. He added that a deep breathing exercise can be a small, easy way to slow down and change “the way we think and feel”.
To try it for yourself, start with a strong exhale to squeeze some of the air out of your lungs. Stay that way for a second or two, then take a deep breath, allowing your abdomen to expand. Count to seven as you inhale, then hold your breath for about the same amount of time. Then exhale slowly for about 14 seconds. Repeat this for about 10 cycles, preferably on the edge of the chair with your eyes closed.
- Allow yourself to feel bad
It may be tempting to diminish your horrible mood by suppressing that negativity, but you’re not actually doing yourself a favor by doing so. Instead, experts tell their patients – and themselves – to let them feel all the emotions that arise.
“Don’t tell your feelings to be silent. Instead, ask, ‘What’s up?’ ”Said Heidi Ligouri, a licensed counselor and motivational speaker. She added that ignoring feelings can often make the situation worse.
Taking the time to process feelings can also help you start a happier way of thinking more easily. There’s no reason to feel bad about feeling bad, explained Kathleen Dahlen deVos, a San Francisco-based psychotherapist.
She calls the acceptance of negative feelings “emotional fluid,” which means experiencing your feelings “without judgment or attachment.” This allows you to learn from them, use them or get rid of them more easily.
- Give yourself a compliment
Self-criticism comes easily to most people, especially when they are in a bad mood. So, once you recognize that you feel disgusting, confront it with a little tenderness towards yourself.
“We tend to be so brutal with ourselves. Not only do we tell ourselves not to feel it, but when we recognize that feeling, we judge ourselves because we have it, ”Ligouri said. “Once you notice a negative feeling – practice compassion.”
If your bad mood is caused by a mistake or if you think negatively about yourself, interrupt that flow of consciousness by choosing one thing you like about yourself. For example, you may prioritize hanging out with your sister or being a team player at work or volunteering every month – something that gives you recognition for your virtues. It sounds shabby, but maybe it just works.
“Developing a practice of conscious compassion has helped me live a happier, healthier and happier life,” Dahlen deVos admitted. “Self-compassion is basically an acknowledgment that, no matter what happens in our lives, we are born valuable, dear, and connected to all of humanity.”
Jodi Aman, a psychotherapist and author of the book “You 1, Anxiety 0”, confirmed that she also practices it. “I have trained to show compassion for what I feel, and this helps me not to judge myself, which eases the pain for the mind and soul,” she said.
Still looking for evidence that this technique really works? Research shows that this practice can also help protect you from anxiety and and depression.
- What should you do next? Well, do it!
Let’s say you showed up 20 minutes later at a meeting and halfway through your important presentation you noticed you had a big coffee stain on your shirt. You will survive the meeting, but afterwards you are furious about such circumstances. In this situation, Ligouri advises you to design your next step by wondering what you actually need.
“Ask yourself: do I still want to feel upset? Do I want to create or revive the commitment to living a happy and healthy life? Should I just take a nap? Do I want to see a friend? ”Ligouri said. In other words, understand what you want to do next – even if it’s just a simple task – and then commit to doing it.
- Ride a bike, walk, hike…
Maybe not literally, but at least get out on the air. Everyone and experts admitted that they rely heavily on this activity as a way to improve their mood.
“It’s important to me to be in the fresh air and to move around every day,” Dahlen deVos said. “Sometimes it means yoga or fitness classes, but often it’s just a morning walk with my puppy or an afternoon walk through the neighborhood.” Her secret weapon? Get out without a cell phone!
Aman also said that long walks are a logical move for her when she is not feeling well. “I have been walking in the woods for a long time. Research on this is infallible. It is good for the mind, body and soul, ”she said. You will also get the added benefit of exercising, which is his own means of improving mood, Sadeghi said.
“Exercising is really one of the best ways to remove stress and sadness,” he explained. “Even endurance training or a brisk game of tennis – something that requires you to focus intensely on your body, its movements and feelings.”
- Find a mantra that works
Dahlen deVos said she always holds a set of mantras in her back pocket and recommends the same to her clients. “Develop a compassion mantra: an easy-to-remember series of phrases that you will repeat when you need to boost compassion or create awareness of a situation,” she advises.
She recommended that you try something like this the next time you feel bad and out of your mind: “It’s hard for me, but everyone feels that way sometimes. Can I be gentle with myself and remember that I am safe and okay ?! ”
- Dancing is a universal remedy
Sadeghi admitted that he personally turns to dance as “a great way to get rid of accumulated anxiety or negative energy.” Using a combination of “optimistic songs you really love,” give yourself space to literally dance as if no one is watching you.
“Let your movements be random, but thoughtful and strong; drag your whole self into it. Imagine the negative energy coming out of your body through your fingertips as you move, ”he explained.
- Play with your pet
There is a reason why pet owners often live longer. Spending time with a dog, cat or other animal can be deeply calming and exciting. Burns pointed out the association with his adopted cat, cited as one of his favorite mood boosters.
“It really taught me something on a deep level. My Misty isn’t special, she’s just an abandoned cat. I’m not special either! But when we are together, life becomes special “, he concluded.