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anxiety, depression, etc
I've been dealing with anxiety for half of my life (I will be a senior in college next school year), but didn't get diagnosed with a disorder until more than a year ago. I was thin for most of my life, but within 5-6 years I gradually put on about 5 pounds per year, due to eating to ease the stress and depression that comes with it (and of course after puberty hit I guess I didn't have that child's metabolism). I have been on PT for more than a year now, but with not much success. I still struggle with emotional eating and staying focused. I worry so much that something bad will happen to me, so I'm like "what's the point...what if once I reach my fitness goal, I find out I'm dying." I'm scared to be happy I guess and scared of life's uncertainty. I know it sounds silly to most people, but perhaps people who suffer from anxiety, depression, etc. who have been able to lose weight or even if you have trouble reaching your goals, could give my some insights, their own stories and advice for me. It would be nice to know that I am not alone in this because I always forget.
Thanks so much!
Fri. Jun 22, 1:20am
You are most certainly NOT alone! What helped me through my darkest days was my therapist (are you seeing someone?), and being able to talk to close friends about how I was feeling. If I had known that yoga was so restorative back then, I would have started it. Instead I gained a lot of weight that I am still trying to lose. Once I decided that it was time to REALLY take care of myself (meaning, cutting down on alcohol, fried foods, and other things that made me feel bad about myself) and started to pay attention to myself positively, the weight started coming off....Take care and good luck!
Friday, June 22, 2007, 2:24 AM
2:24: Thanks for your reply! Yes, I have been seeing a therapist for more than a year now. Unfortunately, what I really am missing in my life are real close friends. I have one I can talk to openly about anything, but she doesn't seem to understand the severity of what I'm going through. Ironically, she hopes to go to grad school for psychology. Furthermore, I question our friendship since I am tired of the way she has been treating me, but that's for another thread lol. I find that I can easily remove negative "friends" from my life, but it's extremely hard for me to make real close friends.
Yeah, yoga is amazing!
I want to reach my goals so badly, but it's like I'm allowing my anxiety to take over my life.
Now what I'm realizing is that I really need to make positive friendships but that's hard for me.
Thanks for your reply!!
Friday, June 22, 2007, 3:11 AM
Sound so simplistic but it has helped me. Develop a gratitude practice. Get a special journal ONLY for the practice...make sure you like it.
Every day write down 3 moments or things you are grateful for....can be as simple as the smell of your mango soap, a stranger who smiled at you in a store, something beautiful you read. You can write a short sentence about the event, person, thought or thing...or more.
I write at night...last thing before I go to bed. I know it sounds like something Oprah would recommend (actually, I think she did)...but honestly it helped me.
Somehow I think you can hold gratitude and anxiety in your thoughts at the same time.
Friday, June 22, 2007, 7:16 AM
Hi O.P., You are not alone! There are alot of us that can understand. I second the idea of a gratitude journal. I have had to work myself out of some dark places & it has really helped me to keep a journal that marks the small things in life that I am happy to see. It can really help retrain your mind to pick out the positives things, the small blessings encountered each day. Instead of going through the day seeing only the spilled coffee or the person that cut you off in traffic you may see the smiles & the kindness.
Friday, June 22, 2007, 9:40 AM
vigorous exercise is my anti-depressant. I stop functioning when I don't get enough. It is really amazing.
Friday, June 22, 2007, 2:00 PM
I've dealt with depression my whole life and been in therapy for years. I'm finally on anti-depressants and that really makes a huge difference. I think exercise works initially but eventually those dopamine and serotonin kicks tend to lessen (for me anyway).
Anyway, I tend to gain weight when I hit a rough patch. The hardest part is taking care of yourself when you are in that rough time and not giving up on yourself and your body. During my last rough patch, I gained 30 pounds in 2 years. Not okay.
The only advice I can give - since everyone's situation is different - is to acknowledge those rough times and ask for help. It's a hard thing to do but remind yourself that you are worth it and that you CAN feel better.
Friday, June 22, 2007, 2:40 PM
Depression and weight gain
Your comment really spoke to me in a personal way. I battle everyday with Social Anxiety Disorder and mild/moderate depression. I've always had SAD, but the depression is fairly new. (about 2 years) Anyway, I really feel for you and can really relate. I've gained about 30 lbs in the last 2 years and find staying motivated incredibly difficult when you're depressed. Please know you are not alone in the world, and even though I'm a stranger, I CARE!!!
Friday, June 22, 2007, 6:42 PM
I'm glad I found this thread. For a few days now I've felt like just "checking out". I've never seen a therapist and never considered myself to be depressed, but now I'm thinking differently. Can a person just all of a sudden become depressed?
Friday, June 22, 2007, 10:15 PM
Depression and Anxiety
I'm a 32 yo. male, and a licensed clinical therapist. Everyday I work with clients in my clinic who come in with depression and anxiety issues, we work through them mainly through intervention strategies and positive coping mechanisms in place. If you're in therapy, you know that there's a cycle to the depression and anxiety. It starts with your triggering events that leads to your thoughts then to your feelings. This is known as the pre-congnitive/ thinking patterns. If we can change our thoughts or our reactions towards those stimuli in the enviornment, the better we are at breaking the cycle. Change the way you think about food in your immediate environment and exercise self-control to replace those thoughts with more positive thoughts. It can be done. I myself am working through the advice I give my clients each day with food. I'm back on the WW diet from 210 to 203 in about 11 days, and I know that if I don't replace my thoughts about what food tastes like "the domino's run at 10pm" and relace it with an apple, I'm on my way...
Friday, June 22, 2007, 11:14 PM
good point- I really have to pay attention so one "off" day doesn't slip into a downward spiral and before I know it I'm in a bad place again. It takes a lot of awareness to keep taking care of myself.
Saturday, June 23, 2007, 2:21 AM
Thank you so much for all of your comments, each and every one of you. To be honest, I was a little scared about the responses I'd receive b/c I don't want people to think that I was starting a pity thread. All of what you guys said really helped and it made me feel better that others are going through the same thing. I think I may consider that gratitude journal. Also, I notice that vigorous exercise works well too, although having the energy to even exercise is hard when you're feeling depressed. Fortunately, I'm taking summer school, which includes a kickboxing class.
I wish all of you the best with your situations. Thank you for being very kind and taking time out to help a stranger! =D
Saturday, June 23, 2007, 2:22 AM
OP here again
2:21-- Yes, I agree. It does take so much awareness to keep yourself from entering into another cycle. I find that to be my problem. I should discuss more about this the next time I see my psychologist.
Saturday, June 23, 2007, 2:24 AM
vigorous exercise with anxiety/depression
several of the previous posters offer vigorous exercise as a solution to scaring the blues away.. however, i second the above OP's comment - sometimes when it really hits, i just feel SO tired all the time.. i've tried to push myself 'over' it, thinking that, well, it's just a mental barrier, and if i push muself really hard, the physical benefits will eventually benefit the mental state as well. but not always this is the case. a few times, after pushing my 'physical' body, i just felt incredibly sick (physically) and even worse than before mentally. so i've actually giving myself some break lately, and trying to listen to the body more. exaustive treadmill can be replaced by a yoga class, or a swim, or just a walk. vigorous exercise isn't always the best solution.
Saturday, June 23, 2007, 10:19 PM
I was one of the "vigorous" posters- and you're right- it's not ALWAYS the answer, but one that helps the low points be fewer and farther between. Yoga is an important element in my life, too, and every now and then I just need to read a book and nap an afternoon away- just enough to recharge, then pick myself up before I come to a screeching halt! I also believe food is an important component. I stay away from anything processed, refined sugars, hydrogenated oils, artificial ingredients and artificial sweeteners -many of these are neurotoxins- affecting the brain. eating "cleaner" helps me a lot. (this also helps people with everything from ADD to anxiety to lupus- different people's bodies react differently from these toxins)
Sunday, June 24, 2007, 12:30 PM
I'm glad I saw this thread. I suffer from anxiety also. I didn't realize there were so many of us here.
Maybe we should start a group...
Monday, June 25, 2007, 11:55 AM
I second that, but think it should be a team since there are so many of us.
Monday, June 25, 2007, 3:34 PM
OP here...I decided to create a team (good idea you guys!) I started a group awhile back, but left it since it was so hard to find a consistent group going. Hope ya'll join. It's called Mind and Body. I couldn't think of a good name since I was limited to the amount of letters, so I just named it that.
Monday, June 25, 2007, 6:09 PM
hey, i'm the 10:19 poster. is the group full already, i can't find it? that's a pity.. well, good luck to you, guys, in Mind & Body!
Monday, June 25, 2007, 8:44 PM
Hey...in case anyone is having a hard time finding it...it's a TEAM, not a group.
When you go to search for a group/team, there is a tab at the top that says "Newest Groups/Teams". Click it and this group is under the new Team section.
See you there!
Monday, June 25, 2007, 10:53 PM
Exercise and diet
I just wanted to point out that even the "listening to your body instead of doing vigorous exercise" is a BIG positive step, at least for me. The clean eating, the yoga, the serotonin generating exercise are all about nourishing your body. So, if you are "listening to your body" in the midst of depression -- you are moving in the right direction. My depression often sets in when I'm dragging myself through something because I think it is best according to someone else. I have to remember that. this dialogue is helping me stay aware and more positive. I"m joining.
Saturday, May 02, 2009, 11:55 AM
You are DEFINITELY not alone! I was diagnosed with depression when I was 16, right after my Dad passed away. I was on meds for it for about a year, then I got so busy with trying to finish school and everything that I didn't have time to think about my depression so I decided I didnt need the meds anymore. I did great up until about 3-4 months ago. Life has slowed down now that I'm out of college and I have too much time on my hands to think about things and dwell on the bad stuff (even though it's not really that bad). I am now back on meds (as of 2 weeks ago) and I'm already seeing a big difference and so are those around me. I also have anxiety as well (like you, I worry about things that others might think are crazy and not worth worrying about). But that's just how it is for me. But as I said, with the meds, its MUCH better!!
As for the weight loss and staying on track, I lost 53 lbs on my own (well, Weight Watchers helped lol). But I didnt join PeerTrainer till about 2 months ago or so and the reason for me joining wasnt weight related at all. But sicne I've been here, reading the posts has helped me stay on track and get closer to my goal weight (9 lbs to go). We're all here for each other and this is a GROUP. No one is alone. That includes you!
Saturday, May 02, 2009, 6:27 PM
Writing down three things per day/night that you are grateful for is an excellent way to improve mood over time. Also actively doing things to try and illicit a positive response from another person (i.e. a stranger). I tell patients, "When you leave my office today, I want YOU to make three people smile today." That could be as simple as holding a door open for them or smiling at someone you pass in the hall and saying "hello." Postive interactions do infact change neural connections in the brain. More and more research is supporting this. JMA
Saturday, October 17, 2009, 11:07 PM
Hey, i agree with the others. Also, I want to emphasize how clean eating "objective" has helped. When I get depressed, I usually stop drinking water (a cleaning, clearing, moving type of energy) and used to go suck down something sweet. This dehydrating and sugar binging produced the lack of energy. Now, I make sure I don't have a ton of sugar, although NOW simple sugars rip through my body. I'm winning (slowly) the war against dehydration. Just a thought - watch what you are eating and drinking in terms of extraordinary self care during rough patches -- it may be the cause of the energy drop beyond the mood.
Sunday, October 18, 2009, 12:17 PM
I don't mean to sound self-righteous. I struggle with this atleast every week. I jsut meant that I know the mood triggers the deprivation and drowning binge which trigger the longer-term energy drain, even when I want to feel better. Just be mindful of your patterns, is all I'msaying.
Sunday, October 18, 2009, 12:19 PM
I have found yoga and meditation to be a great help. After starting yoga I found I took my meds less often.
I have spontaneous anxiety bouts. Sometimes I can find a trigger, other times not.
I go out to play ball with my big dogs for 15-20 minutes and have found that also helps stave them off somewhat.
Sunday, September 04, 2011, 6:03 PM
depression ? think small steps !!
i have been coping wit depression for 6 years after my wife tried to kil herself . her depression caused my depression and ruined our marriage now i dont see my young son because of the animosity my leaving caused. i started taking all the medicaton and going in and out of hospital . i feared life itself became a recluse and gained 100lbs plus . its still very hard for me to go out anywhere on my own , i got control of the panicky feeling and used self hypnosis discs to beat the depression . Now my mental problems have become easier to cope with but not gone completely, i started peertrainer to help me with my confidence aswell as to lose the weight i gained cos of the medication and lack of activities.
i believe in small steps , i used this to be able to go out again and now im using it to lose the lbs. im aiming to lose 1lb -3lb per week , enjoy eating again and choose ACTIVITIES I LIKE TO DO , that i dont think omg i got to do this and i got to eat that!!!!
i really know and understand how you feel and its not silly to me because i ve been through it andit feels horrible at times , i still burst out nto tears at the smallest reminder of my son ! so thin small steps and think life changing , not just to lose weight and keep strong yu deserve to be happy !!
Wednesday, October 05, 2011, 2:49 PM
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