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Ways to beat the blues

Does life sometimes get you down? There are ways to raise your spirits and get your emotions back to a happier place!

Depressed woman

There is a point in all of our lives when things get us down. We all get the blues, but there are strategies to use when the blues come on that can get rid of them fast and keep them from coming back.

We’re not talking about something far more serious — clinical depression, which can persist for more than a month and include suicidal thoughts. If it’s more than a mild depression or a simple lack of energy and motivation or it includes too much sleep and bouts of tears or anger, seek medical advice. There are treatments and medications to help.

Beating the blues

When you have the blues it seems like your “get up and go” has gotten up and left! You don’t feel enthusiastic about anything and you lack motivation. This is a time when you need to get out of the house, if only to go for a walk. Even if you don’t feel like it, get moving. Take up a a sport or go to the gym, work out at home or around your neighbourhood. Exercise produces endorphins, which make you feel better fast and getting in shape boosts your confidence, sadly lacking when you have the blues.

If you’re not the sporty type, practice something and get good at it; art, music or writing will help you let your emotions out. Do something with people who share your interests: a book club or video-game competition, playing cards or taking a museum tour… the point is to be with people who share common interests. Even if you don’t have relationships with them, you’re thumbing your nose at the blues when you seek companionship!

And that’s what friends are for, too. Have a cup of tea and a chat with a girlfriend. You may not feel like your usual perky self, but friends will be there to listen, and spending time with someone who knows and loves you can elevate your mood. You’d do the same for them if the blues were paying them a visit.

Take extra care

When the blues hit, we can neglect our health and often fall out of the habits of healthy living. It’s important to take extra care of yourself when you feel emotionally down and drained. Drink one or two litres of fresh water every day. Staying adequately hydrated helps wash away the blues. Make sure that you eat properly, too – more fruits, vegetables and whole grains. With the blues, eating habits can suddenly change. You may be eating too little or soothing your sadness with too much food. Pay attention to your diet. Find a better way to comfort yourself: a massage, some new, special music to relax with, or snuggling in bed with a light, entertaining book.

And get some sun! Even if a trip to a tropical island isn’t a possibility, you can sit in the park or bask in your own backyard. The sun stimulates the production of vitamin D, which can be a mood enhancer. So put on a light sunscreen and get solar-energized! You’ll feel better right away!

More mood tips

Six ways to improve your mood
7 Ways to beat the winter blues
10 Ways to reconnect with your friends

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