Life & Stuff · Mental Health

Back to Basics: What to Do When Feeling Low

I find that when I’m feeling low within myself (either sad or anxious or just off), I tend to catastrophise. To think that I’m doomed, I can’t possibly get past it, and I’ll feel this way forever. I don’t think I’m alone in this.

Firstly, let me say this: there’s a difference between depression and sadness. And, there’s nothing wrong with negative emotions.

If you feel depressed, as in you have felt very low for a long time, I suggest you seek professional help and guidance.

If you are feeling “negative” emotions like sadness, fear, jealousy, shame, anger, or the like, then don’t try to suppress or deny these. These emotions have a role to play, too. We can’t be happy or excited or feel “positive” emotions all the time. Negative emotions are important for balance, self-knowledge, and just being human.

However, if you are feeling low and you wish to perk yourself up a bit, it could be helpful to simply get back to basics. Ask yourself the following and you just might be able to shift your low mood.

 

Sleep

Have you had enough sleep lately? I often find that feeling tired can make me feel low, too. Having little energy makes us feel weak and can leave us feeling overwhelmed by the day’s tasks ahead. Therefore, ensuring you get enough sleep could be the fix you need to start feeling better.

 

Eat

Have you eaten well today? Have you had enough to eat and have you eaten the right foods? Energy-giving foods are important for our mood regulation, too. Eating certain foods can increase anxiety and tiredness. Be mindful of what you are putting into your body.

I find that when I’m hungry, I feel anxious more.

 

Water

When you haven’t had enough water, you can feel drained and unfocused. You can feel sick, get headaches and feel weak. If you’re feeling low or anxious, try to stay as hydrated as possible and it just might alleviate some of the icky feelings.

 

Activity

Spending all day doing nothing is a great way to feel low or anxious. Our minds, when bored, can often wonder and imagine and basically create problems or fixate on things in order to occupy the time! Make sure to keep yourself productive or at least doing something.

We all need rest and breaks, but we shouldn’t be doing nothing for long periods of time, especially not if we’re feeling low or anxious.

So, read or have a tidy-up or go for a walk.

 

Social

Sometimes our icky feelings can come from too much alone time. We need the appropriate amount of social interaction to our personal needs. Extroverts need a lot more than introverts, so it’s important to know who you are and what you need to feel healthy and happy.

Have you interacted with anyone today? Have you been overwhelmed by too much social interaction? Adjust accordingly.

 

Outdoors

And lastly, you may be feeling low or anxious because you’ve been cooped up inside all day. No matter the weather or time of year, you should always aim to get out of the house every day at least in some way.

I work from home but I leave the house every day for at least 30 minutes to walk my dog, and since having him and doing so, I’ve felt much happier and healthier within myself.

 

There you are, some ideas about basic ways to alleviate low mood or anxious feelings, or what could be causing low moods and anxiety. Let me know if any of these helped.

Take care x

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