Depression: Using Positive Thoughts
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Dorian Innes discusses ways to help fight symptoms of anxiety and depression and recalls how he has personally had issues with depression and anxiety at TinyBuddha. Innes shares that there were many multiple life factors occurring that contributed to her depression and anxiety, which included loss of his job, his girlfriend, and a large chunk of friends. Innes tried reading books, going to see motivational speakers, talking with friends and family, exercising, taking vitamins, and everything else except drugs. However, he was met with no success and at times felt even worse, so he decided to try something else. He decided to write down all the reasons why he shouldn’t feel depressed or anxious. He found this to be successful. Innes now believes that these 20 thoughts helped him to get out of his funk.
1. In order to have good things, there must be bad things.
Innes believes that, “Without one, the other couldn’t exist. So instead of lamenting the bad and celebrating the good, celebrate both. Celebrate the bad because it will eventually be good. And celebrate the good before it goes bad.”
2. You’ll never be perfect—just like everyone else. Because no of us are perfect, that allows for diversity. With diversity comes the creation of magnificent ideas. And even better, no one expects us to be perfect, except maybe ourselves.
3. People are mean or angry or sad because they need to be at that time.
People’s emotions are temporary, so remember that this too shall pass. Anger, anxiety, and depression are here for one moment and gone in the next, so don't hold onto them. Likewise, happiness and pleasure is also fleeting, so remember to just relax and allow your thoughts and emotions to be as they are.
4. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing.
Enjoy what you have to the fullest - Don't hold back, and remember to savor every moment.
5. You can’t control everything and everyone.
The only thing you can control is yourself. You can’t change the way things happen, but you can change your reaction to them. Find a way to develop more self-control in order to increase your happiness, and practice letting go of your desire to control others. Attempting to control others may result in unnecessary pain for both yourself and the person you want to control - Release.
6. Money and wealth are not the same.
Money is used to buy objects in a human economy, but wealth can be found within the heart of social relationships - Love others, and enrich yourself through meditation, relationship, and love.
7. You’re exactly where you are right now because that’s where you need to be.
You’ll only understand why in hindsight.
8. You don’t want or need to know the future.
Let the future surprise you. We can take steps in doing the right thing, but the outcome wil be seen as it presents itself.
9. No one will remember the little flub you made in the office or at home earlier.
Don’t let little mistakes get in your way, and remember to let go and forgive yourself. Everybody makes mistakes.
10. Life doesn’t assault you or throw curve balls at you; you get what you give.
This is the principle of karmic reciprocity - Contribute to the others, and you can generally expect that others will return your kindness and generosity so that the net result is positive, joyful, and abundant for everybody. Check your relationships to ensure that you are not inviting pain through your actions toward others.
11. If you don’t like someone or they don’t like you it’s because you each see yourself in them.
Take a look at the reason why you don't like somebody, and ask the question, "What do I dislike about myself that this person seems to be reflecting back to me"? Check it out. Others can serve as a mirror for your own personality. Take a closer look at your own insecurities, and recognize that this process is occurring with others as well.
12. Right now, at this instant, you have everything you need to be happy: Air in your lungs, blood in your veins, and lips to smile with. Enjoy what you have been given.
Practice gratitude for the things that you have in your life right now, and remember to enjoy the present moment - Don't get caught in your fear about the past or the future. Be present and centered.
13. When things break and need mending, it gives us something to do. Take care of things that need to be attended to.
Problems are not the horrible things that you may think - Problems provide us with an opportunity to grow and develop into more powerful and intelligent beings. Recognize that your problems are opportunities to discover solutions, and find these solutions through inner strength and self-knowledge.
14. Everyone makes mistakes.
Mistakes happen to everyone, and they help us to grow. Learn to forgive yourself for mistakes, and forgive others as well. Resolve to take positive action, and do it.
15. Success has no standard definition.
Define success on your own terms, and remember that your personal success, professional success, and social success can be generated in a unique way through your own genius.
16. Life is very simple.
We just insist on complicating it. Each person is usually their own worst enemy.
17. You don’t need something to be happy. You need someone—and that someone is you. You have the power to makes yourself happy or angry.
Remember that possessions and external pleasures are only temporary and fleeting, so they will not bring you true and lasting happiness. Find the inextinguishable joy within.
18. Just like you look up to someone, someone out there looks up to you. Act accordingly.
Whether you think you are the best person in the world or not, somebody out there is probably appreciating one or more of your most positive qualities - Remember that you are a role-model in somebody's eyes, and strengthen your own virtue. For their benefit and yours.
19. There’s a lesson hidden in everything.
You just have to find it.
20. Other people have had your problems before and managed to overcome them. You can too.
Recognize that although you may be encountering problems in your life that you may believe to be insurmountable, you are actually one of many hundreds or thousands that have experienced something similar throughout the past. Therefore, you can draw upon the strength of those who have overcome a similar challenge, or perhaps you can complete what others were unable or unwilling to finish. You are a part of the human race, and we are all moving toward the light. Take yourself forward, and take us forward.
- Kim B.
Isn’t life more refreshing and inviting when we live a life from a positive perspective rather than a negative perspective? I believe so. I want all of us to begin having a "glass half full" position in life, including myself. I know that might be more difficult than it sounds. However, we can never know until we try.
There are many so-called experts today who challenge us by trying to get us to acknowledge our habits. They want us to acknowledge both our good habits and our not so good habits, where, statistically speaking, it is believed that we can make or break a habit in 21 days. That is to say, if we practice making and/or breaking our habits, they can become muscle memory or routine and less of a challenge after 21 days.
With this idea in mind, should we be able to break a cycle of negativity in the same 21-day time frame? Not necessarily, if we have lived a life of negativity for 21 years, it will be quite difficult for us to break the pattern as quickly as we would prefer. However, it can be done much quicker than we think if we want it to happen.
For example, someone who has smoked cigarettes since their teenage years will find it very difficult to throw the package away and not have an urge to smoke ever again. If we were able to simply take away the chemical dependency aspect of cigarette smoking, it would still be a very difficult habit to break. Many people smoke cigarettes because of the socialization aspect rather than from the physical or mental chemical dependency. When I worked for a specific company several years ago, there was a smoking area designated for all employees. Many people took their brakes in the smoking area along with coworkers and it often became socialization time over a cigarette. Even those who did not smoke would often go to the ‘smoke hut’ for their breaks because of the social interaction. I recall a similar story from one of my high school teachers, who was in the Navy before becoming a schoolteacher. His account was that he was not a smoker until he was a member of the Navy. The sailors are assigned duties around the ship and if you were a smoker you received more frequent breaks from your specific duty. So my teacher took on the habit of cigarette smoking to benefit from more breaks.
Even if we have depression, we can live a life of positivity. If we can invoke the power of positive thinking, we can begin to change our perspective on life and begin to break our bad habits. Moreover, when we use the power of positive thinking and our influence, we begin to change how others view us. We can break our negative cycles, then through our example we can help them to become more positive.
Innes, D. (2012, December 9). 20 Thoughts To Help Relieve Anxiety and Depression. Retrieved December 22, 2014, from http://tinybuddha.com/blog/20-thoughts-to-help-relieve-anxiety-and-depression/