It’s no secret that I was on antidepressants for just over 12 months. You can read more about that here. When I first started taking them I wanted to make sure that when I was ready to wean off them I had a sort of mental health scaffolding in place that would help this process and make sure I had the tools to cope with the ups and downs of life without Zoloft. Here are some things that have helped me manage my anxiety and depression that I still use regularly.
One of the first things I started doing when I was pregnant with Darcy was meditate. I had pretty full on
morning all day sickness with him and I just didn’t feel like exercising, so after dinner I would sit on the lounge and meditate. Fun fact: I meditated almost every night during my pregnancy with Darcy – only missing a session on the odd occasion!
My favourite app for meditation is Smiling Mind. It’s free, easy to use and I find the narrator’s voice really soothing. There’s a bunch of programs to work your way through and most of the meditations are between 5-10 minutes so they’re really accessible and you don’t have to devote a whole bunch of time to it, if that feels overwhelming.
If you’re feeling really overwhelmed, start with the SOS session. I have recommended this one so often recently! It’s 3 minutes and it can help ground you and bring back a sense of calm in moments that feel really overwhelming.
I’ve dabbled in yoga in the past, however, never really committed to making it something regular until I was pregnant with Darcy. Again, I was too sick to exercise at the beginning and then to be honest, I just didn’t feel like it a lot of the time even when my energy returned – so I turned to yoga and it’s now become a staple in my life.
Nate and I did yoga regularly together while I was pregnant. I would crack up so much when we were doing prenatal yoga together – but he was a good sport!
Sarah Beth Yoga has a fantastic youtube channel with a range of videos from pre and post natal yoga, yoga specifically for anxiety and depression, as well as more intense yoga workouts. I really love the language Sarah uses, I fnd her calming, gentle and really descriptive so you can lose yourself in the flow and don’t need to be constantly looking at the screen to check you’re doing it right!
Elle Fit Active is also a favourite of mine. I have her Get Bendy ebook and have gifted her poster to my mother in law too! The ebook is super handy as you can take it anywhere, or her posters are great for when you’re wanting to switch off from technology and easily work your way through her program. Elle has kindly given my readers a unique discount code. So if you’re thinking about purchasing one of her products, simply use the code: RUNNER2MUMMA for 10% off.
Journaling + Gratitude
After we lost Felix, one of my beautiful friends gifted me a journal to help me process everything and just write stuff out. I journaled for a little while but then got out of the habit. When I was pregnant with Darcy, I made it a habit again and sat my journal next to my bed and would write down 3 things I was grateful for that day. Another fun fact: I did this almost every night throughout my pregnancy.
While I haven’t been journaling as much as I should since Darcy was born, I do try and take time out every day to practice gratitude, even if it’s just rattling off 3 things I am grateful for in my head. This helps shift your brain from a negative bias into a more positive state.
Here’s a great 2 minute video that breaks gratitude down for you. I hope it encourages you to give it a try![youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JMd1CcGZYwU&w=560&h=315]
Let me know if there’s anything you do to improve your mental health that I have missed!