Tag Archives: worrying

10 Tips for Living in the Moment

Sit still live in the moment How often are you truly living in the moment? I probably spend more time obsessing about the past and worrying about the future than I do thinking about right now.

In addition, I am distracted by technology, work or stress and not really present in the moment. A friend or family member may be talking to me, and I am not giving them my full attention. I am working but thinking about the laundry, the errands I need to run and the argument I had with my daughter.

We can live a happier, more fulfilling life if we focus on the present. We need to relish every moment we have on this Earth. Here are 10 tips to help you live in the moment:

Focus on now
If you are constantly worrying about what might happen in the future, how can you fully appreciate the present? Tomorrow is going to happen whether you worry about it or not. You may also be obsessing about things you can’t control. What good will worrying about it do? Redirect your mental energy to enjoy what you are doing right now.

Do one thing at a time
We have talked about multitasking in the past. You aren’t really multitasking, you are quickly switching from one task to another. You are not fully giving the present your attention if you’re talking on the phone with a friend and typing an email. Do one thing at time. If you’re eating lunch at work, just eat. Don’t give into the urge to read a report while you eat.

Give yourself space
Related to doing one thing at a time is putting space between things. Leave room between tasks on your schedule. Then, if you run long on one task, you won’t be stressed about getting behind on the next task.

Do less
Our society encourages us to do more, more, more. We have to fill our days to the brim. Rushing around and hurrying through things does not help you live in the moment. It leaves you frazzled and always thinking about the next thing. You can do less. Doing less means you can accomplish your goals, feel more satisfied and probably achieve a better end result.

Live slowly
When you do less, you can live more slowly. You can take the time to enjoy the present. How often do you sit and talk to your spouse without any distractions? Do you take the time to have a 5-minute, uninterrupted conversation with a child? If we slow down and do less, we will capture those precious moments that slip by when we are stressed and overwhelmed.

Savor the little things
Take time to notice the world around you. We tend to forget to appreciate the little things. Enjoy whatever it is you are doing. Enjoy snuggling on the couch with your kids instead of thinking about the laundry and sink full of dirty dishes. Relish an ice cream cone. Soak up the sun shining on your face.

Be kind
Random acts of kindness help you live in the moment. If you are doing something nice, you are focused on the present. Smile at strangers. Hold the door open for others. Help a friend who is feeling overwhelmed. You improve the present moment for you and someone else.

Give thanks
Be thankful. When everything seems to be going wrong, take a moment to be thankful for the good things. You can be grateful for family and friends. You may be in good health. You have a roof over your head, a warm place to sleep and food to eat. There is always something to appreciate.

Do nothing
Spend five minutes a day doing nothing. Just sit in a quiet place. Be aware of your thoughts and breathe. Take in the world around you. Rejoice in the stillness of doing nothing. You may be surprised by how much it can help your mood and attitude.

Let it go
Leave the past in the past. You can’t go back and change it. Worrying about it won’t change it. Give yourself permission to let it go. Forgive others and move on. If you continue to allow past events to affect your mood, you won’t be able to fully enjoy the present.

Life moves quickly. If you’re spending all your time worrying about things that have already happened or might happen in the future, you are missing out on the here and now. You can live a more balanced and happy life when you live it in the present.

Advertisements

11 unexpected causes of depression

Surprising causese of depressionAbout six months ago, I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism. It’s a condition that is characterized by abnormally low thyroid hormone production.

I had decided to go to the doctor because I had no motivation to do anything and was extremely fatigued. Some days, I was taking two or three naps a day. I didn’t even want to do the things I enjoy doing. In addition, I had a weird bald spot in my hair, lack of appetite and severe mood swings.

I really thought my doctor was going to tell me I was depressed. It seemed like I had many of the typical symptoms. I have since discovered that there are several things that trigger depression, or even mimic depression.

Depression can be brought on by ongoing difficulties, such as a major trauma, grief or serious life-changing events. Often, a combination of events or personal factors will build up and lead to depression. A change in the chemicals in our brains is also believed to contribute to depression.

Here are 11 unexpected, and maybe even surprising, causes of depression:

Genetics
If you have an immediate family member who has suffered from depression, you have a three times higher chance of being depressed than someone who doesn’t have a family history.

Lack of sunshine
Seasonal affective disorder or SAD is more than just wishing for warm weather during the gloomy winter months. We need sunshine to help keep our body’s internal clock functioning like it should. Daily exposure to just 15 to 20 minutes of sunshine can be enough to reap the benefits.

Omega-3 deficiency
If you don’t eat enough omega-3 fatty acids, you can be at an increased risk for depression. To get your omegas, just eat fatty fish – like salmon, sardines and tuna – as well as canola oil or walnuts.

Poor sleeping habits
Chronic lack of sleep can desensitize your brain to the effects of serotonin, a chemical that helps control your mood and feelings of well-being. Most people need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night to help stave off depression.

Too much social networking
People who are addicted to the Internet are more likely to become depressed. They spend too much time in chat rooms or using social media sites like Facebook. These sites serve as a replacement for real-life socializing. Get out and talk to real people! Looking up health information online can also lead to an increased focus on health problems and contribute to depression.

Medications
Depression is a side effect of many medications. Be sure to check the side effects of any new medications you take. You should also check with your doctor when combining more than one medication to see if there are risks. Even oral contraceptives can contribute to depression in women. Talk to your doctor if you notice symptoms of depression when taking a new medicine.

Worrying too much
The habit of mentally dwelling on your problems can lead to depression. I am guilty of doing this. If I have an argument with someone or feel like I may have said something to hurt another person’s feelings, I will play that conversation over and over in my head until I have blown it out of proportion. I have to work at distracting myself to break the cycle and realize that I am usually creating stress out of nothing.

Poor relationships
You may have friends or co-workers who are a negative influence on you. Over time, the negative attitudes of others can wear off on you. Depression can even be contagious. Spending time with a depressed person can lead to similar depressive symptoms in you. Find a few upbeat friends who can outweigh the negative emotions that might be swirling around you.

Financial troubles
Tough economic times will bring anyone down. Going through a particularly rough financial patch, such as unemployment, a home foreclosure or bankruptcy, can be extremely stressful. It is not surprising that these trying financial events could lead to depression.

Being overweight
Adults who are overweight have an increased risk of being depressed. We are under so much pressure in our society to look a certain way, and thinness is considered the ideal. It’s more important to focus on creating healthy habits, including eating right and exercising regularly. No matter what your weight, you feel better about yourself if you know you are working at being more healthy.

Underactive thyroid
The link between an underactive thyroid and depression has been documented. Up to 50% of people with hypothyroidism will have some depression-like symptoms. It’s worth having your thyroid hormone levels checked if you are feeling depressed, along with other symptoms such as fatigue, dry skin, cold sensitivity or hair loss.

By taking thyroid medicine every day, my hormone levels have returned to the normal range. While it means taking a pill every morning, I happy to say that I feel like my old self again!