Dear Lifelines: Feeling Low


Dear Lifelines,

Lately I have been feeling down and despite having the doctor say I'm in excellent health, I can't seem to shake the blues.

Signed,

Feeling Low

Dear Low,


Sounds like you made a great choice in heading to the doctor to check out your physical health. There are so many factors that can impact our health and mood that it really is a wonder that any of us can feel upbeat on a regular basis.

Recently, I spoke with a friend who ended up having very low vitamin D levels that showed up in some blood work tests. The result of the low vitamin D was in some changes in mood and feeling very low and depressed. As well, Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) can be common during the winter months and special lights can be purchased that offer users full spectrum light that can help improve mood. It's necessary to check with your doctor on possible causes of your mood changes, as there are many possibilities.

In addition, it's important to stay on top of your health with a health care practitioner and keep up on your vitamins and minerals and in eating well-balanced meals. Naturopaths many times offer excellent advice and health options that might not otherwise be considered in mainstream health practices like trying out various elimination diets or addressing hormone level fluctuations. It's incredible how what you eat, how you move, and who you spend time around can impact the way you feel.

Switch things up a bit and turn off the tv, try a new radio station, join a social network, try some local community activities, volunteer with youngsters, try a dance class, visit an old friend, or try attending a church service other than your own faith for a change. You can even make a calendar with local activities and events that you want to try and get one week as jam-packed as you can bear and then assess your week and find out what gave you the most pleasure. Then do more of whatever you discover brings you the most joy.

One way to really critically examine your life and make changes toward living more positively is in interviewing the elders in your community. Our senior citizens are a huge resource and they have so much to offer in the way of wisdom and experience. Many have had very challenging lives that put our life challenges to a more balanced perspective. Why not take time this month to visit the seniors centre, hang out with some older citizens and get curious about some of the great adventures and inspiring lives that our local seniors have lived. It might be interesting to find out from them how much attitude has played in their experiences in overcoming adversity.

In engaging in a discussion with a senior, not only will you likely be much better off for it, but you will also be sharing time with someone who might not be feeling too terribly appreciated at this time in their life. It could be just the activity that you both might benefit from.

Let us know how it turns out!

Sincerely,

Lifelines

"Your brain is the hardware of your soul. It is the hardware of your very essence as a human being. You cannot be who you really want to be unless your brain works right. How your brain works determines how happy you are, how effective you feel, and how well you interact with others." Dr. Daniel Amen (author of Change Your Brain, Change Your Life)

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