Do not ignore it
Stress turns our life’s energies against us, leading to many problems in the form of diseases. The silent killer of the body is not really cancer, diabetes or tumor, but rather our own mind. If this mind is poisoned, it will hurt not just our own body but others around us. Depression is a result of severe stress over a period of time and feels like a piecemeal suicide every day of our life.
Find the problem
Our lifestyle has made us impatient; we want instant results. If we do not get something we want, we get depressed. We indulge to the extremes, and are unable to find our center and stay balanced. Social, financial and career stress are primary reasons for depression today. Relationships are no longer deep and meaningful, but rather mostly superficial. When calamity strikes us, we do not have a coping mechanism. Suffering does not allow us to live life to the full potential. Do a self examination and find out the source of the suffering.
We are not alone
There is nobody in this world who does not have a problem or stress in life. Problems are a symptom of life that shows we are alive. Everyone in this world is subject to pressures. Only the pressures are different for different people. But when pressure crosses the threshold and we are unable handle it and come back to our relaxed self, this pressure takes a toll on our body and mind.
Uncover our joyful self
Everything we do in life is driven by a desire for happiness. Happiness is our true inner nature. We have an inner longing for happiness but look outwards for it. We seek pleasures and comforts in life and think it is true happiness. If it was true, then many so called successful people in this world would not be unhappy. When these pleasures leave us, we become unhappy. When we are not in control of ourselves, the external world determines the experience of our life.
Reduce your ego
It is said, the bigger the head (ego), the bigger the headache (stress). The more full of ourselves we are, the less we will get in life. Being humble will help increase our receptivity to learn and grow as a human being and open us to higher joyful possibilities in life.
Bring positivity in life
Negativity is the enemy of success. Anger, hatred, jealousy and depression are various brands of poison that we drink everyday in life and wish that someone else who caused it, be affected by it. But it only poisons us, and only us.
Positive thinking and believing that our life will progress into something better than what we are now will improve our present condition. A spiritual practice will help improve willpower; the connection with the divine will give resilience and strength of mind. You can remove sourness from life by adding positivity and a healthy outlook to it. Always remember nothing lasts forever. So every problem will also pass away sooner or later.
Meditate daily. Meditation is a cleaning exercise to clear all negative thoughts.
Enjoy every moment
We either live in the difficult past or constantly worry about the future. We forget the need to live in the present moment and making it a joyful experience. To enable the awareness of living in the present, if our mind tries to worry about the past or future, become conscious of what we are doing at the present. If walking, feel the legs, toes and the pressure we are putting on them with each stride. Walking in the park? Appreciate the beauty of nature; look at colors, shapes and forms and appreciate that we are alive to experiencing this wonder.
Focus on what is in our control
We tend to focus on the results of all our actions instead of focusing on the action itself. We forget that only the action is in our control. If we can just do our best and let God do the rest, we will be stress free.
Define our success
Success in life is not making lots of money. Even people who are very rich get depressed. Worldly riches are temporary and would never be constant. Sometimes worrying about them causes depression and anxiety. We tend to exaggerate both our pleasures and pain and fail to stay centered in both extremes of life. The biggest success of life is victory over ourselves.
When we are stressed out and do not know what do, simply start thinking about all the things in life we have that we are grateful for. Feel lucky that we have a loving family and trustworthy friends; that we can hear, see and hold things with our hands; and that we can walk, run, eat and sleep. Appreciate that our heart is beating, we are able to excrete each day, and we are able to breathe. This will help us value our life.
Many problems in life can be solved if we can simply laugh it off. Practice laughter yoga everyday. Find reasons to smile often. Smile is infectious and will make the world around you happy.
Build healthy relationships
It is not the internal headache of the head that troubles us, it is the headache people give that makes us suffer. We cannot let problems around us enter our mind and stay there. Finding someone emotionally strong as a friend or maintaining a good loving family bond will help us grow emotionally. Bring out the best from people around us based on the positive energy or vibes we generate. If this is not possible, we should save ourselves from unhealthy relationships and maintain our mental peace.
Find happiness at work
Like the elements of a job that align to ease pressure. Try to add in other passions that we truly enjoy. It may be painting, music or any hobby we can love to do outside work. It is generally people in the workplace that cause more stress than the actual work. If possible, try to create a healthy culture in the workplace.
Create lifestyle changes
According to Ayurveda, the causes of any disease are the following: sadness, depression, fear, exhaustion, wrong type of food and sedentary life/laziness. Focus on all these and see what can be improved.
Regular exercise is useful to focus energies towards physical well-being. People who regularly exercise are more active and able to maintain a good mood through the day.
Avoid too much use of electronic devices. Research has proven that checking emails and chat messages many times during the day reduces productivity. Do not keep a cell phone nearby while sleeping to check messages during the night or first thing in the morning. If possible, have a few weekends a year away from internet and electronic devices; it gives the opportunity to spend time with ourselves. Sleeping well will also reduce stress in life. Sleep meditation is very helpful in reducing stress. A 20-minute afternoon nap will help recharge the body and mind. Follow the principle of “simple living, high thinking.” Too many possessions cause stress. Help others in need and, when they are happy, we will be too.
Practice pranayama and meditation
Pranayama are breathing exercises in yoga that improve the oxygen flow in the body. Oxygenated blood is useful for the brain as it makes us think sharper. Do Anulom Vilom pranayama; alternate nostril breathing exercise; or Kapalbhati, Bhramari and Udgeeth pranayama for 15-30 minutes every day. Meditation helps us become aware of everything we do. If thoughts trouble us during meditation, we can try an ommeditation where we meditate by chanting the word “om” with every breath. It is a unique sound that generates certain positive energies in the body.
Try home remedies and Ayurveda
In 1 cup of milk, add ¼ teaspoon of ghee, one teaspoon of turmeric and boil this milk. Drink this milk with one tablet of Medha Vati.
Drinking water from a gold container helps reduce stress and depression.
Take four almonds and half a walnut, and soak in water overnight. Grind them to create a paste, add in 1 cup of milk. Blend the milk with this paste for about 5 minutes. Blending improves the potency of this mix. Drink this milk with an empty stomach in the morning with two tablets of Brahmi Vati.
One to two tablets of Medha Vati each day depending on severity of the condition with warm water will help with mental illness. It will also improve memory and concentration. It can be useful for dementia, insomnia, anxiety, depression, epilepsy and migraine.
Saraswatarishta is a medicine that is useful for depression, anxiety, amnesia, Alzheimer’s disease and insomnia. It helps enhance memory, increase concentration, reduce stress and improve sleep quality. Use it as a brain tonic and recommended dosage for adults is 4 ml twice daily, 30 minutes after meals with equal amount of warm water.
Lastly, the most important thing in life is that we are alive. Let’s take charge of ourselves and make use of this tremendous opportunity to “rejig” our life.