Being joyful can be challenging when life feels heavy, dark and meaningless. Often people experiencing depression are confused, tired and overwhelmed and do not know how to find relief, meaning and joy. If you feel unmotivated or powerless or you are seeking relief from depression, the five simple activities in this article may inspire you.
Although these activities may seem easy and basic, they possess enormous power. When the activities are performed every day they have the power to bring you peace and calm and ignite your spark for life! These activities are for your whole being - your body, mind and spirit. Your mind alone cannot "think" its way out of depression - working with your physical body and inner spirit is equally important.
The first activity is to care for your body. This is most important because without your body you would not be alive. Each day wash it, feed it healthy food and exercise or at least move it. If you do not feel motivated, start with a smile (fake one if you have to). Take a few deep breaths. Wiggle your toes. Wash your face. Wear clean clothes.
The intention of the second activity is to reconnect you with nature. All you need is five minutes being around trees, flowers, bees and birds. Even if you stay inside all day and never leave the house or office, you can easily connect with the natural world around you. Right now, see if you can become aware of the air you breathe and the wind outside; the earth supporting you and its gravity holding everything in place; the water in the atmosphere, ground and clouds above you; the space or separation between different objects; and the sunlight inside and outside. You can connect with the five elements of nature - air, earth, water, space and fire - anytime, anywhere.
The third activity is for your mind. Ask yourself: "What am I doing now?" Focus your full attention on that activity. Are you reading, sitting, breathing? Now ask yourself: "Where am I now?" Be specific - name the street, suburb, city, state, country, on Earth, in the solar system, in the Milky Way, in the Universe and the cosmos. Do it now! These simple questions will take you out of your head (away from the incessant thinking) and ground you back to Earth.
The fourth activity involves resurrecting the joy from a past joyous moment. Everyone has at least one so if you cannot remember one, search your memory-bank or photos. Now reflect on this moment and bring back to life the feelings of joy in your life now. What do you feel - is joy safe, content, inspiring, harmonious or carefree?
Finally, the fifth activity is to connect with your inner Spirit. Rather than focusing on what you don't have or want, make a list of everything you are grateful for. These things may be simple like sunshine, fresh water to drink, family and friends etc. If you cannot list one thing you are thankful for, then write down the words "my breath" because without it you would not be making a list. Each day name at least one thing you are thankful for.
These five simple activities have the power to put you on the pathway to relief and joy. When they are performed each day, the five activities will help you to bring balance and peace to your body, mind and soul. Remember to be kind and gentle to yourself. Make your actions simple, and before you know it you will naturally discover the beauty within and the beauty surrounding you. Remember that regardless of what your mind negatively tells you or what others say, you are worthy and beautiful. Your inner Spirit is shining bright through the darkness you feel. Deep within, you possess the strength to take action, create the life you want and to live with joy.
By Leisa Millar
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