Sometimes you wake up and the world has just decided to turn against you for no reason. And it’s so easy to slip into depression or sadness at varying levels. It’s important to find the things that your body likes in order to address your blues before they get out of hand. Had a friend take their own life and since then I have been more aware of how outta sync my body is and now maintaining my happiness is top priority. Having been in and outta depression I know better than anyone that it gets tricky to come out once that rabbit hole is opened. These are just five of the things that I usually do to keep myself together when I’m tearing at the seams.

• Cleaning
I read somewhere once that cleaning a mirror could drastically improve your mood when you are down in the dumps. I tried it and it worked! But I didn’t stop there, I had so much energy I went on to clean the house and do a little garden work as well. My mother loves it when I’m in this mood. I don’t understand why cleaning works but it’s a real pick-me-upper. As a creative, I get tired of seeing things looking the same way for too long so restructuring and redecorating also brings me joy.

• Listening to Music during Exercise
This one was an obvious one. Most people can relate to this one. I’ve never been able to just lay in bed and listen to music. The Energiser bunny in me cannot sit still and do nothing. I greatly dislike time being wasted. I usually listen to music when I am cleaning as mentioned above or when I am running. When I am feeling low, I put on my running shoes and just go! Never tried running without music though. But the combination of the two is a stress reliever and can lift my spirits quicker than anything else. Apparently running releases happy hormones and gets the blood rushing to give you energy.

• Writing
I don’t express my feelings very well verbally. I hate confrontation and I avoid it at all costs. I don’t argue or debate. I just sit there and let you finish and just go. Grew up in a family where you didn’t have a right to have feelings so I learnt to keep it all inside and hide it in my writing. I’m not hiding it very well though cause somebody once called my writing ‘angry.’ I cannot write when I am not upset. It just does not happen. Money and anger are the two things that fuel me to write.

• Eating bananas and chocolates
Bananas are high in potassium but I am not even seeing how that affects my mood swings. Science isn’t my thing., clearly. I always keep chocolate stashed in the house for times when I feel a dark cloud hovering above me. On any other day, I cannot eat chocolates. I do not like them and they make my skin breakout but in case of emergency administer chocolate and discharge. Okay, so bananas and chocolates are also the remedy for period pain and hormonal imbalance during my cycle. Try it, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

• Introspection
Searching deep within yourself to find out what’s keeping you under the weather is probably the best way to find a long term solution to keep the blues away. I have come to find that procrastination makes me unhappy. When I have too many outstanding things to do I get overwhelmed and start feeling sad. But as I start to list down what needs to be done, I realise that its not much and checking stuff off the list brings back my happy camper personality. Bottling things up also eats away at me and ruins my mood. Avoiding conversations or suppressing my emotions makes me manic depressant.