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Extreme self-care

July 28th, 2005 at 05:33 am

The morning after my last entry, I found myself unable to get moving on much, and in no better a mood. I realized it was time to drag out my copy of Feeling Good, The New Mood Therapy, by David Burns. It's about overcoming depression, and has a great chapter called Do Nothingism which usually gets me moving again. I read that and some other sections, and realized I'd moved from my "normal" Mild depression well into Moderate and it was time to do something to stop the slide.

The things I wrote in my last entry are so typical of the negative thinking that can overtake you when you're depressed. I don't even know if it's the money worries that really set me off. It could be a whole combination of things, like DH's own bad moods, not exercising lately, not eating right, daylight hours starting to lessen, the hot oppresive weather, the news, or the blood pressure medicine I'm on that has depression as a known side effect. Anyway, I've learned the thing to do is DO something about it, not overanalyze it. So I'm currently on a regime of Extreme Self Care. I'm grateful most of these are free:

Limiting my exposure to the news, talk shows, and advertising for things I can't buy right now
(The way I'm doing that is reading more and keeping music tapes in my car)
Doing things like ironing and shaving my legs so I can wear clothes that make me feel better
Eating right and taking B vitamins
Listening to music
Comfort foods
Cleaning, putting fresh tablecloths on, fresh cushion covers on the porch chairs
Resting when I need to rest
Going online at the library in addition to at home, just to get out of the house and also save my online time at home
Spending time in bookstores just browsing, getting titles and taking notes

I ought to be exercising more, and I ought to get outside now that the heat wave has broken. I ought to get back to weekly "Artist Dates" like I used to do. There's a book called The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron that suggests these--it's just a kind of date with yourself where you get a change of scenery, do something different. Then there are always bubble baths... DH and I also have to get back to doing some fun things on the weekends. $12 for movie tickets is worth it, if it saves our sanity! When I redo the budget again, I'm going to try and find room for Fun.

2 Responses to “Extreme self-care”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    I have that Feeling Good book, too...I bought a couple of years ago...but I'm sorry to say, I haven't read it. It's nice to hear a good review of it, though. I should probably put it a bit higher on my "to read" list. Hope you continue to feel a little better, every day.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    Just being able to recognize the symptoms is awesome! I haven't read that book, but I've really enjoyed "Romancing the Ordinary" which sounds similar. Isn't it crazy that something as simple as shaving one's legs so we can wear something that makes us feel good and changing the cushions can feel soooo good? Keep it up sister!
    If you like bubble baths, you may like this as well... the author of the aforementioned book, Sarah Ban Breathnach, talks about running the bath water, pouring in a cup of saki, and opening up a few tangerines (tied up in some cheesecloth) to place in the water. She says for fun you can also put in a couple of whole tangerines to play footsie with. It'll help to take out toxins and is very relaxing. Have a great day.

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