Category: Anxiety and Depression

Liz Coleman RTC

Not Happy? Not Unhappy? .. You’re in the Comfort Zone

The Comfort Zone can be like the Dead Zone when you’re neither Happy nor Unhappy.

At first escaping to comfort isn’t all bad it’s helpful. Like a reward, we’re happy and feel relieved with the break from the anxiety and stresses of life. But when escaping becomes the place you live from... you are in the Comfort Zone.

The reward and happy feeling of Facebook, gaming, TV or whatever your escape, eventually wears off. It always does. Then you risk becoming caught in your comfort zone. If you don’t drop the activity to find something new the need for the happy feeling will force you to just do more of it. Longer periods of TV watching or longer, more often Facebook sessions etc.

You’re left feeling unfulfilled.

Neither happy nor unhappy.

Do you want a different experience?

The first step is to sit in the ‘need’ to escape. When you notice your urge to watch tv, have a smoke or check your phone stop…. notice your feelings and thoughts … take 5 deep breaths. Make the activity more conscious rather than an automatic behaviour. You’ll feel more in control and have taken power back to live the life you want.

Next step is to try something new. That something that’s been niggling at you but you’ve always found excuses to avoid. Follow your desire to learn or do something new.

Feel the discomfort of challenging yourself and the aliveness that results.

You don’t have to risk your life to get out of the Comfort Zone just take a step and stretch.

Remember comfort will always be there if you need a safety net.

Just take notice if you start living from there.

Find out more about Goal Setting to really give the boot to the Comfort Zone.

Anxiety and Depression: Is Medication the Answer?

Taking medication for anxiety and depression seems to be the accepted treatment but in my experience and my client’s the side effects can be as bad or worse. So often the overall physical and mental health of the person isn’t even considered before recommending medication.

My experience of being put on Paxil when I was younger was it did make me feel happier after a couple of weeks but I took myself off them right away. It just wasn’t a ‘normal’ happy and I didn’t like being chemically altered. I felt it had done it’s job and I didn’t need them. If I’d trusted my doctor’s warnings though I would have continued.

The truth of my situation was I was working night shifts at a casino. I call it my dark ages. Ding ding sleep disruption. How many of us don’t know that lack of sleep or sleep pattern disruption causes a change in moods? Was medication the best option for my situation? How about my diet? My overall physical health and mental health and my ability to cope with emotions?

These are all important when dealing with someone who’s experiencing anxiety and/or depression but often ignored as in my case.

What to do?

If you or someone you know is just starting to experience anxiety or depression or is on medications here are tips to get the whole picture and create a holistic approach to treatment.

1. Get allergy tested for any food allergies or intolerances that could be affecting your mood. Change to a healthier, less-processed diet.

..eating whole or nutrient-dense foods, and avoiding refined sugar, gluten, pasteurized dairy products, and processed factory foods like Fritos and Oreos. I also recommend taking fish oil supplements, vitamins B-12 and D, a multi-vitamin, and a multi-mineral.

2. Ask your doctor for thyroid testing.

I would have your doctor run a full thyroid panel that should include TSH, Free T4, Free T3, Reverse T3, and Thyroid Antibodies. Test for deficiencies in vitamin D, B-12, ferritin, and iron.

3. Check sleep patterns. Meds can cause disruptions in sleep but studies show sleep problems can be the cause of mood disorders.

4. Exercise! Moving your body and the deep breathing that goes with that energizes and oxygenates the body and  brain leading to numerous benefits both physically and mentally.

5. Talk to a Counsellor or Psychologist. Anxiety and Depression can also be a symptom of poor emotional coping skills that can be shifted once they’re identified.

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