Mental Health: What Helps Me

Photo by Lisa Fotios on Pexels.com

One of the major keys to dealing with anxiety and depression is to get ahold of it before it spirals out of control. But exactly how is that done? Also, having a plan for when it does spiral out of control is necessary to expedite your recovery to mental and emotional stability. Therapy, scriptures, and affirmations are three major tools that have helped me. Also, having someone you trust when you can’t talk to your therapist and having a SOURCE, which I call God/Creator/Divine/Source when you have no one to talk to is major. For me, Source is always available but, I know there are things I can do on my own to help myself. And this is encouraged by Source.

I think you should really get to know who you are and how things affect you. The only way to do that is to be totally honest with yourself. I am sensitive as I found most creative people are. It allows us to channel our emotions into what we are creating. I have a tendency to take things more personally, overthink, and overanalyze. I have learned how to back out of those things and become an observer for the most part. I also know that it takes me time to move past things. Over the years it has become easier to move past things. I think that comes with wisdom and not age.

Here are some of the things I do to help me to get ahold of anxiety and depression:

I acknowledge what I am feeling and then I ask myself why I am feeling it. What happened? Who said it? Consider the source from which it came from and are they credible? No one is more credible than God for me. If it’s coming from a person I don’t know, a person that is negative, a person that doesn’t like me, why would I feed into their opinion? Exactly. Unless, deep down inside I feel that way about myself and I am honest if I do! If they say, “You are ugly” and lately I have been ripping myself apart I’m going to feel bad. BUT YOU have the power to change what you feel by changing what you think and speak.

I use affirmations for anxiety and depression. If I feel afraid to sleep, I say to myself over and over, I am safe in my body. I am safe in my home.

I use scripture pertaining to whatever I am feeling or scriptures to contrary. If I feel weak, I say I am strong. If I feel afraid, I say God has not given me a spirit of fear but of power and love.

I pray.

I say, “Oh. I am feeling some anxiety today. I can fold my clothes. I can do some work as I work through this. I can do some exercise.”

If I have persistent thoughts or episodes, I make an appointment with my therapist (currently searching for a new one).

I talk to a friend I trust.

I cry. Crying is a release.

I pamper myself. I take hot showers. I oil and lotion up. I give myself a pedi/mani or go get one. I soak in a lavender Epsom salt and pink Himalayan salt mix. I schedule a massage session.

I go to my bathroom and read my yearly marching orders or my affirmations to reset my brain.

Now, what about when anxiety is CODE RED or depression is CODE BLUE!

My plan is to shut things down for a day or two this can include social media and putting phone calls on hold.

I call my therapist.

I rely on all the things above.

I immerse myself in Netflix, a blanket, and the couch.

I allow myself to sleep.

I lose myself in a hobby.

BUT the maximum I give myself is TWO DAYS and then I MUST come out of it. Anything longer than that can set me up for darker and deeper holes that are difficult and require help to come out of. I come out of it by pushing, forcing, and dragging myself to get back to a routine. A little at a time. And during this time, I make sure personal hygiene stays on top. If you don’t wash your face, brush your teeth, change clothes, shower, YOU WILL FEEL EVEN MORE LIKE CRAP. People tend to let themselves go in bouts of anxiety and deep dark times of depression.

During this time, I stay hydrated. I do allow myself some treats but I also make sure I eat as healthily as possible. Too much sugar or salt will make you feel worse. I add one of those packs of Vitamin C to my water. I sit on the porch. I go for a walk. I do 10 minutes of yoga if I don’t feel like doing 30. I do tai chi because it is slow movement. I may just stretch every two hours.

I hope this helps someone. Recently in Memphis, this week, we went through so many tragedies many of us are feeling things we can’t explain and some of us know exactly what we are feeling.

~Nikki

Affirmations for Courage to Heal Trauma

Photo by Irina Iriser on Pexels.com

I am couragious

I call forth my strength

I am ready

I move forward in faith

I trust my Higher Power

I trust myself

I believe in my ability to heal

I make choices that represent my healing

I breathe

I speak positive things about myself to myself

I feed my mind healthy information

I cry when I feel the need to because crying helps me to release toxins in my body from negativity

Crying has nothing to with strength

I am okay

I take time to take care of myself during this process of healing

I seek professional help if necessary

I seek books that help my healing

I listen to those who can help my healing

I am patient with myself on this journey

I show compassion towards myself on this journey

I forgive myself

I am forgiven

I am deeply loved by the Creator

God cares about me and is here to help me heal

~Nikki

28 Days of The Self Love Project: Day 28 Knock, Knock Housekeeping!

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

Protect your peace.

Erase (get rid of) toxicity.

Cleanse your space.

Cultivate love.

Protecting your peace helps to maintain self-love. You want to keep a peaceful environment as much as you can wherever you are. Yes, at home and at work. You want peaceful relationships as much as possible. Having peace in your life helps maintain self-love.

Get rid of anything and one that is toxic. I know the word is overused these days but, if it’s not good for you and to you, you don’t need it. This could be hoarding in your home. This could be a bad habit. This could the obvious, such as friendships and family-ships. Can you get rid of family? Probably not. But you can keep your distance and set those boundaries we talked about.

Cleanse your space. Clean up. Clean up your space at home and your office or desk space.

Cultivate love wherever you are. Cultivate a loving environment at home. Take love with you to work and to the grocery store. Be compassionate and kind to those you come into contact with. Be patient.

1 Corinthians 13:4–8a (ESV) Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.

~Nikki

28 Days of The Self Love Project: Day 27 Experience, Teacher of The Year

Photo by Pavel Danilyuk on Pexels.com

In order to love who you are, you cannot hate the experiences that shaped you. -Andrea Dykstra

~Nikki

28 Days of The Self Love Project: Day 26 You Have Power

Photo by Dziana Hasanbekava on Pexels.com

Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself. -Coco Chanel

~Nikki

28 Days of The Self Love Project: Day 25 Save Yourself

Photo by luizclas on Pexels.com

You need your own love to save your heart. -Rithvik Singh

You know that feeling you have when you are in love? That is the kind of love you need for yourself. That’s it. That’s the blog post.

~Nikki

28 Days of The Self Love Project: Day 24 Perfection is NOT The Goal

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

You were born to be real, not to be perfect. -Unknown

The process of deepening the roots of self-love will not require you to be perfect. It will require you to be real. As the quote expresses, you were born to be real. Real means you are just as human as you are divine. In your human form you will always make mistakes. We have discussed forgiving yourself on this self-love journey. You’re going to need to do that often because there will be trial and error. Sometimes you will come out on top and sometimes you will not but, each time you will learn and grow. To learn and to grow is the VICTORY!

So, remember, you are real. Not perfect. No pressure.

~Nikki

28 Days of The Self Love Project: Day 22 Each One, Teach One

Photo by RF._.studio on Pexels.com

How you love yourself is how you teach others to love you. -Rupi Kaur

So, how have others been loving you? It can be a scary thing to think about if the love you have received hasn’t been a true reflection of love. We are talking from the young adult perspective to the mature adult perspective. When you are a child, of course you are not responsible for how love came across to you from your family. But, from young adulthood on out, you teach others how to love you.

How others love you is a reflection of how you love yourself. What you allow others to do, get away with, tells you how you feel about yourself. When you love yourself, beyond outward rewards and self-care practices, you will not allow others to mistreat you. You will not allow others to misuse you. Yes. It happens sometimes. It happens along the journey but, remember all you have to do is to remind yourself of your power and the love you have for yourself.

I practiced telling myself, “I love me, more than I love you.” It took me awhile to believe it and it has gotten me out of some bad relationships and has helped when it came to friendships and family-ships. Yes, I made up that word. It has helped me to draw the line. It has helped me establish boundaries. I wouldn’t treat you like “that” or myself. Therefore, I cannot and will not allow you to treat me like “that”. It has helped me to grow roots to deepen my love for myself. It is very grounding. It is very centering. It helps me to get back on track. It is especially helpful in romantic relationships because it helps you not to lose yourself. It helps you to establish and maintain boundaries. In the beginning, it helped me to learn what was not good for me.

HOW do you love yourself? Really think about the ways in which you speak to yourself. The things you do to yourself. How you feed yourself. How you push away your dreams and goals. How you feel about yourself and your looks. If you don’t feel good about you, it radiates. If you feel good about you, it radiates.

Teach people how to love you by first teaching yourself how to love you!

~Nikki

28 Days of The Self Love Project: Day 21 Reading Rainbows

Photo by Cole Keister on Pexels.com

Another thing that can help the heart space is READING a self-help book about what is creating the imbalance or negative emotions in your heart. Somebody out there has gone through what you have been through and survived. They not only survived, they healed, and they thrive. Reading to HELP yourself heal is a way to DEEPEN the self-love you have for yourself because it is a healing the wounds in which love is leaking from.

Is it childhood trauma? There is a book for that.

Is it the divorce you never got over? There is a book for that.

Amazon has a search bar and you can type in exactly what you are looking for.

I love going to Barnes and Noble and you can go to the Self Help section. You can let a book pull you in. Ok, you can be “guided” to a particular book. Ingesting what you are reading gets into your mind, your spirit, your soul and begins to help heal those wounds. I have so many books that have impacted and changed my life for the better. I encourage you, as a way to DEEPEN THE ROOTS OF SELF LOVE, to READ your way to heal the heart.

Some books that helped me in my journey:

One Day My Soul Just Opened Up-Iyanla Vanzant

Something More: Excavating Your Authentic Self -Sarah Ban Breathnach

The Power-Rhonda Byrne

Inspiration- Dr. Wayne Dyer

Just to name a few but, everyone’s journey and needs are different! You have to be willing to be a participant in your own healing. You must be willing to do some searching.

Seek and you will find!

~Nikki

28 Days of The Self Love Project: Day 20 Blank Stares

Photo by Irina Iriser on Pexels.com

Prayer and Meditation is another way to balance the energy of the heart or to heal the heart. “I can’t meditate” is a statement I hear often. The very fact one makes this statement is a reason for meditation. The second thing is the language, “I CAN’T”. Change that to I can. If you daydream or drift off to nowhere, you can meditate. Sitting quietly and gazing out the window for one minute, not judging your thoughts, not getting involved in your thoughts, simply letting them come and then refocusing on breath or whatever you are gazing on is meditation. If you can do that for one minute then you have just meditated. There are too many YouTube videos and apps for meditation and even a thing called guided meditation. You can put in time and search for a 3-minute meditation. You can try the app Calm.

Never underestimate the power of prayer. I don’t know your religion and I don’t care much about that. I care if you choose to tap into the power of prayer. Prayer has a calming effect. Prayer can help heal your heart, remove negative emotions, calm you down and if you LISTEN you just may receive solutions. They may not come immediately but, perhaps through dreams or some time that day, week, month. You will get your answer or instructions. Prayer helps soothe the heart. Prayer and action can change the heart.

This one below is good for the a morning meditation with no words.

This one below is a good morning meditation for beginners

This one below is a good morning prayer

This one below is ONE OF MY FAVORITE PERSONS THAT DOES AFFRIMATIONS AND GUIDED MEDITATION…I LOVE ME SOME HIM