Updated: Nov 28, 2020
I was first diagnosed with depression at the age of 17 when my eating disorder had become undeniable and I was submitted to hospital for psychiatric treatment. I had started to manage my anxiety by developing anorexia at the age of about 14. But it took some time for me to actually reach out for help. And of course it took time for me to loose enough weight to look obviously malnourished. I ended up being checked in to a ward and spent my 18th birthday in hospital. Wow...something I'll never forget.
I'll elaborate on that whole story another time but for now I want to focus on a few keys facts.
Firstly, I was and have since been prescribed antidepressants. I was suicidal at 17 and honestly didn't see any point to life at all. However, the two days that I felt the antidepressants in my system were a nightmare for me. I really hated the feeling of having those chemicals in my body....and it just caused more stress. So I refused them. And have done so every time that I 've been prescribed them ever since.
I read up on all the side-effects. Being anorexic I was a totally stickler for wanting to know exactly what I was putting into my body. The eating disorder gave me a sense of control over my temple and there was no ways I was putting those toxins into it.
So, I researched absolutely every alternative. And I discovered a lot. By that time though I had also been exposed to Hypnotherapy and I was awakened to the realisation that I had inner work to do to alleviate the emotional pain I was in. No pill was going to do that for me.
So what did I do instead?
I worked on getting healthy. Physically healthy.
I used art to express all of the dark and destructive emotions that I had to work through. I started telling people how I really felt and started asking questions many people are afraid to ask.
And so began a good couple of years of healing. I'm 45 and of course, with the world not being the absolute utopia it could actually be, I still have to battle depression. But I have found and mastered tools that work so well for me now that it's really not a label I give myself.
In fact, I never did. I never categorised myself as someone who "has depression".
I have challenging times yes, but my perception of myself is that I am ultimately ok and am just going through life...riding the waves. Do I pop pills? Oh yes...lots. Do I have crutches...of course. But I am conscious to try and choose pills and crutches that are more supportive than destructive.
I've made a video sharing information on the supplements that I take religiously, every day to support my mental health. They also give me clarity, help me to stay focused and of course support my physical heath as well. But that's really the key. You my not realise this but every choice that you make actually affects your mental health. What you eat. Whether or not you move your body enough. The company you keep. What you watch on TV. What you read. Your thought patterns and beliefs.....nothing is separate.
It all feels quite a lot to take on right? But the beautiful thing about connectedness is that if you just make a change in one are it will affect the rest.
For me, the easiest thing to do is...pop a pill right? Let's be honest that's why doctor's are so quick to prescribe them.
However, with me being so sensitive to chemicals and not getting on well with conventional medicine in general, I pop other pills instead. So below I'm going to list what I take and as well as a few other things that I do ( and don't do ) which really help me stay in the driving seat when it comes to my mental health. I really hope it helps you or someone you care about in some way.
Watch my video for more info. In the description on You Tube you will find links to more information on these.
*Supplements I take daily:
Organic Lithium Orotate
Turmeric & Black Pepper
Omega 3 Fish Oils
MSM powder ( Methylsulfonylmethane )
*Work out regularly even if it's just a brisk daily walk to release excess energy that stress builds up in your body
*I avoid alcohol as it honestly makes me feel down unless I am out with friends. Even then I drink very little if at all.
*I don't smoke. Smoking increases stress levels and personally makes me feel ill. If you smoke as a way of dealing with stress just try and remember that every time you smoke you are putting your body under extreme stress which is going to really take away from your resources in being able to cope with what you are already finding stressful!
*Express your feelings : journal, talk, draw, dance, it doesn't matter how you do it but ignoring negative emotions or painful feelings doesn't make them go away. Its more positive to be honest about where you are at; releasing this and then taking a break. It's really liberating.
*Eat good food
*Do what you love - work on some personal goals , even small ones. It will immediately remind you that you are really in control of your life even if is doesn't feel like it sometimes.
*Being mindful of my thoughts and my thinking - I listen to recordings every day made by my friends and myself that are full of beautiful, positive statements. Wow...pure medicine for the mind. Really is. So become aware of what you are saying up in your head when no one is watching. It really does have a massive impact on your life.
*Gratitude - yes, it's been said a million times and I'll say it again. You can have aspirations to want to improve your life, lose weight, have more money etc....but don't wait for all of that before you feel grateful or to start loving yourself. You really will be much better off doing that right now...as you are. That's the real magic trick :)
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