10 Ways to Find a Little Peace In This World

What gives you peace? What puts you in 'the zone' where you lose track of time and senseless thoughts? As we get older, it seems like there's no time for hobbies or things that give us joy. If you're smart enough, you'll find the time for all the things you love. But what if you have depression, and your sadness makes you unable to enjoy things things you used to love? It happens to the best of us. I go through waves of each hobby of mine. I have many outlets since I've been a spring chicken. I'm kind of like how my mom was---if I was stressed out, I'd cook a big meal or clean the house to rid of the negative thoughts. If I was having a panic attack, I would pray to God, meditate and play my soothing music in my prayer room. Other times, I'd pick up my guitar and play for an hour or two. Another favorite of mine is throwing myself onto the sofa and diving into a really good book. For me, reading puts me in the moment---it makes me focus on words and visualize the environments the author is planting in my mind. It's the perfect escape.

I remember one day, nothing would soothe my tension. I was caregiving for my mom and working in a nearby office. I went downstairs and saw her in such agonizing pain. I made sure she took her pain medication and sat with her for a while, until she fell asleep. The sadness, the anxiety was all too overwhelming. I was so tired from a lack of sleep, but something made me get up and go outside. I just sat in a chair facing the sun and closed my eyes. Whatever reason---maybe the vitamin D, maybe the sounds of the birds or just being out in nature---it seemed to have calmed my nerves. I know that many people fear the sun due to its harmful rays, but in moderation, it has helped me feel better, sleep better, and it even helps with gastrointestinal issues. The lack of vitamin D can sometimes leave us feeling sick and full of anxiety.

Here are some things that may help you if you're having a bad day full of anxiety and depression.

  • Go out for a drive and turn up the music. Open up the windows and feel the wind against your arm. 
  • Put on your earbuds and listen to your favorite music.
  • Give CBD a chance. I once wrote a post on how it made me feel too tired, but I wasn't giving it enough time. Like with any medication, you have to go through the 'side effects' to get the good effects! I cannot tell you how deeply I sleep these days. Which brings me to my next suggestion.
  • Sleep 8 hours if you can! Sleep deprivation can wreak havoc on everything. 
  • Do something you're afraid of doing. Conquer something you thought you could never do. It gives you a feeling of accomplishment. 
  • Pray. Go to your Source. Become more aware and conscious of the answers God is giving you.
  • Ground yourself. Count 5 things you can see. Count 5 things you can hear. Count 5 things you can feel. 
  • Try the 4,7,8 breathing exercise. Inhale for 4, hold for 7, exhale for 8 seconds. Do this a few times sitting down.
  • Go do something nice for somebody else. Take your mind off of YOU. 
  • Try cooking a new recipe.
Everyone deals with anxiety differently. Some people actually prefer to be busy, not giving them a chance to deal with their anxiety, but what happens is, once you try to relax at night, your anxiety will then release and keep you up with either a panic attack or insomnia. A therapist once told me the reason why I would get my panic attacks in the evening once my partner came home. I always looked forward to seeing my partner, but for some reason, something would trigger my anxiety once she walked in the door. My anxiety would flare up. She started to get a complex. But by not letting myself have an anxiety attack or feel tension during the day, it would bottle itself up until it was time to relax. The door of emotions opens up and BAM---a panic attack. So now, when I'm working at home and feel a panic attack coming on, I let it happen. I feel the waves of anxiety and then take a break to breathe and ground myself. I pray, I read, I meditate. Dealing with the anxiety right there when it happens was the trick to relieving my nighttime panic. 

And remember, everybody is so different in dealing with their anxiety. What works for one person may not work for another. Find your remedy and stick to it. It's OK to not be OK. You don't have to have it all together. You don't always have to be the responsible one. You don't always have to be the 'go-to' person all the time. Sometimes you need a 'go-to' person, and guess what? That's OK! Allow yourself to feel everything. Also, allow yourself to rest and relax. We sometimes feel guilty for resting or doing something that's not work-related or "productive." You do you and watch how things change for the better. 

Oh, and feel better! 

For more of Deb's articles, please visit: www.debrapasquella.com or join her on Facebook and Twitter. Check out her cooking blog for some of her famous recipes!