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44 Positive Affirmations for Depression to Inspire Change

Originally posted at ECounsiling.com

44 Positive Affirmations for Depression to Inspire Change

MS Broudy, Ph.D
November 12, 2020

Have you ever given yourself a pep talk? You may not have realized it, but you were practicing a form of positive affirmation. Coping with depression can be discouraging and debilitating. Vocalizing certain phrases about yourself can provide a much-needed lift and motivate you toward positive change. Affirmations are a simple and useful tool that can help with depressive symptoms.

Reciting positive affirmations for depression

What Is a Positive Affirmation?

A positive affirmation is a self-statement that emphasizes your strengths, values, and favorable qualities. According to cognitive theory, depression is caused by distorted negative beliefs. Positive affirmations can be used to counter negative perceptions and bolster confidence in your abilities. For instance, you can replace the thought, “Nobody will ever love me” with the affirmation “I am worthy of love.” Many people who use affirmations recommend standing in front of a mirror as they repeat specific phrases to themselves, but you can perform them anywhere you feel is comfortable and effective. For increased success, it is suggested you practice your affirmations at least twice daily.

Do Affirmations Work?

Positive affirmations have been associated with multiple factors related to the reduction of depressive symptoms. Self-affirmation has been shown to activate parts of the brain that are associated with positive self-valuation. There is also evidence that suggests that affirmation increases the neural pathways related to a person’s reward centers, which undeniably boosts your mood. Further, an affirmation can serve as a protector against stressful situations that threaten your well-being. It can also help motivate people toward healthy behavior, such as eating fruits and vegetables. Maybe most importantly, the use of affirmation has been directly linked to feelings of optimism and happiness.

Keep in mind, however, the effectiveness of positive affirmations depends on their content. You need to be able to believe in what you are saying for them to be helpful. If you tell yourself something you know is not true or is unlikely to occur, it probably won’t help.

For example, if you keep saying to yourself that you look like a supermodel or are as musically talented as Adele, you are less likely to be able to convince yourself. In addition, the above research concludes that personally relevant affirmations appear more effective. Therefore, the more specific the affirmation is to your life, the better. Finally, affirmations that focus on the future seem to be most powerful. As a result, emphasizing behavior or outcomes that you can work toward will make them more productive. It may be useful to think of an affirmation as an active roadmap for positive thoughts and behavior.

Affirmations for Coping with Depression

There are literally millions of possible affirmations. Here are 44 you can use that are specifically geared for dealing with depressive symptoms:

While the above affirmations are suitable for numerous situations, one of the strengths of using affirmation is that it can be tailored to fit any area in which you are struggling. For example, if you are lacking confidence in whether you will do well on a work presentation you could affirm “I am prepared for today’s presentation and I will be successful.” Again, the more specific an affirmation is to your particular situation, the more it will resonate with you and produce positive results. Fortunately, affirmations can be made as distinct as necessary and easily changed to fit a particular circumstance.

Positive Affirmation as Part of a Depression Busting Package

Practicing affirmations daily is a useful tool in the fight against depression. It can improve self-image, reduce stress, increase healthy behavior, and boost mood. It is especially effective if the affirmations are personally relevant, realistic, and future-oriented. In addition, creating and performing an affirmation is a relatively simple process that only takes a few minutes.

It should be noted, however, that affirmations are not suitable as a lone treatment for depression. Clinical depression is a serious psychological disorder that often requires professional intervention. Affirmation is most effectively used as part of a treatment protocol that may also include psychotherapy, online counseling, medication, and positive lifestyle changes. While some steps for dealing with depression can be initiated independently, such as reciting positive affirmations, the most significant improvements typically result from working with a trained professionals.

MS Broudy, Ph.D

MS Broudy is a psychologist, writer, and consultant. He has a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and a master’s degree in Social Psychology. He has spent over 20 years providing therapy and assessment services for a diverse set of clients. MS specializes in writing about mental health, parenting, and wellness. He has his own blog, mentalspokes.com, where he writes about psychological issues.

Being Positive in 2020

If there was ever a year that was the antithesis of thinking positive, it would be 2020.  Dealing with covid-19 is hard.  People are dying from this, and that’s tragic.  You would think during this horrible time, we’d all come together and support one another, but that isn’t happening, and for me, that is why this year is all about negativity.

I spend a lot of time on Facebook, probably too much time if we’re being totally honest, and what I see posted there breaks my heart.  Here in the states, I’ve seen an election tear a country apart.  Prior to that, I saw a president that did not reflect any of the values I believe in.  I’ve seen people belittle one another over their political choices.  I’ve seen friendships end, and I’ve even seen families torn apart.

I’ve seen people belittle one another over the wearing of masks, and amazingly, I’ve seen people complain that some groups of people are working from home.  On a personal front, I’ve seen parents saying the most horrible things about teachers, blaming the fact that schools are closed on teachers.  News flash…teachers don’t have that power.

I feel bruised and battered and beaten down on a daily basis, and I know I’m not alone.  So many of us are feeling this way.  People losing jobs left and right and there isn’t enough money to survive, let alone celebrate the upcoming holiday.

It is this time, more than any other we need to dig down and find that scrap of positivity and focus on it.  Think positive thoughts, spread some joy.  When you encounter a hateful post, or worse, a hateful person, walk away.  Don’t bring negativity like that into your life.  Do what you have to do to pull yourself out of the pool of negativity that has been 2020.  You can make a difference and spread some positivity in this world  – everyone can.

Smile more, lend a helping hand when you can, and remember this has been a horrible year for pretty much everyone, but if we pull together, we can make it a little bit better.

How Negative Thoughts and Emotions Affect Our Skin (+ 6 Tips To Change That)

Image source

 

All processes in our body are controlled by the nervous system. At the same time, the strongest bonds connect it with the skin, since they are the real embryological twins. Let us explain what this means. During the development of the embryo, the spinal cord and brain, peripheral nerves and epidermis are created from one material — the ectoderm, the outer germ layer of the embryo. And then these systems exchange a never-ending stream of messages for your whole life.

 

The relationship between the state of mind and skin

 

In dermatology, there is a section of psycho dermatology — a discipline at the junction with psychology. It studies the connection between skin conditions and our emotional background. And this is not surprising: the condition of the skin directly depends on the psyche.

 

The effects of stress

 

It is known, for example, that stress can worsen the course of such skin diseases like  dermatitis, psoriasis, etc. And, conversely, skin diseases, during which acne, irritation, dryness are observed, can cause severe stress. In addition, stress negatively affects healthy skin.

 

Some scientific works have proved that on the background of stress, the permeability of the skin barrier is disturbed, i.e. the main functions of the skin — barrier and protective — deteriorate.

Glucocorticoids, produced under stress, reduce the rate of lipid formation, depleting the hydrolipid mantle.

There is evidence that stress can also cause pigmentation disorders.

 

The complexion changes

 

Bad news, a quarrel, an unjust reproach, fatigue — and then the fresh, radiant face suddenly became grey and dull. All these, as well as insomnia, are stress factors, during which the release of the hormones catecholamines occurs. Peripheral vessels and skin capillaries are narrowed, blood and nutrient supply is reduced, so the skin turns pale and you get dark circles under the eyes.

 

Puffiness

 

Another vivid example of stress is a violation of the outflow of fluid, manifested by a slight swelling of the subcutaneous fatty tissue. And now there is swelling and pastiness, which, by the way, may not appear immediately, but after some time.

 

Reduced skin firmness

 

Many people note that against the background of stress, the skin loses its tone and elasticity. The face seems to be ageing, the skin looks flabby and lifeless. Violation of micro circulation inevitably affects its elasticity. But the decrease in tone is also associated with a general change in the tone of the muscles of the face and fibres of the connective tissue — they lose their readiness to contract.

 

Acne

 

Stress hormones trigger acne, and the appearance of imperfections on the face makes you nervous and aggravates the problem.

 

Increased skin sensitivity

 

The reverse side of stress is the development of dryness and hypersensitivity of the skin because of the fatigue and nervous shocks. This is due to an increased level of cortisol, which entails a disruption in lipid synthesis in the epidermis.

 

Symptoms of sensitive skin such as itching and tightness may become more pronounced with stress. But as soon as the situation returns to normal and there are no reasons for negative feelings, these phenomena will completely disappear.

 

How to improve your skin? Here are a few advices:

 

  1. If you are wondering how to improve your skin, restore its elasticity and radiance, then the first thing to do is to revise your diet. Those whose menu is based on fast food, fatty and heavy foods should change their habits right now. If your diet is balanced, has a lot of greens, fibre and other natural products, then you can periodically arrange cheating days for yourself. Just don’t turn them into cheating weeks or months.

 

  1. Take vitamin complexes, especially in winter and spring. It is very important that the body does not have a deficiency of vitamins A, B, C, as well as other essential substances;

 

  1. Don’t neglect proper skincare. Carry out an audit on the shelf, throw away all expired funds, as well as those that are not suitable for your skin type;

 

  1. It would be nice to fall in love with sports. Active movement improves the supply of oxygen to the body, so choose an activity that you like and go ahead. If you don’t want to go to the gym, walking in the evenings or yoga are a great choice too.

 

  1. Drink the right drinks. If you do not know how to improve your skin condition, train yourself to drink a healthy liquid. Eliminate strong drinks, soda, dairy drinks and alcohol from the diet. You can safely drink green tea, it is rich in iodine and has a lot of benefits and not only for your skin.

 

  1. Don’t forget that if you have a serious skin condition, such as dermatitis or psoriasis, none of the advice above will make them disappear, you should always seek professional help. Green Square Dermatology can help you with your treatment, education and ongoing prevention of serious conditions.

 

Conclusion

 

A look may not be the most important thing in the word, but your health certainly is. Don’t treat your organism and skin like they are not a part of you. You can always try your best to avoid all the negative situations and emotions and with following the tips we gave you, you will always look gorgeous, fresh and healthy!

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You can include this bio if you like: Nina is a blogger, yoga aficionado and healthy lifestyle enthusiast. She’s passionate about learning new things and sharing meaningful ideas. If you wanna see what she’s up to you can find her on twitter

How Positivity Can Improve Our Physical Health

How Positivity Can Improve Our Physical Health

by Patrick Bailey

The connection between mental health and physical health isn’t something we hear a lot about in today’s fast-paced world but the proof is there. How we think affects how we feel. Even the random thoughts that float around in our heads have an impact. When these thoughts are positive we stand to benefit in more ways than one. Positive thinking and health are closely linked and it doesn’t take make to incorporate positivity into your daily life.

Can Thoughts and Emotions Affect Your Physical Health?

Most everyone knows what it feels like to be angry or even furious. While anger is an emotion, it also comes out in the body. Your heart rate increases, your muscles tighten, and your breathing changes. These physical expressions can take a toll on your health if they happen often.

Negativity develops out of patterns of thinking and feeling that work against your well-being. When left unchecked, chronic stress is the result. Chronic stress has damaging effects on the body’s systems, disrupting your hormone balance, weakening your immune system, and depleting the “feel-good” chemicals your brain uses to promote happiness. While negative attitudes and feelings can tear down the body’s health, the flip-side is also true. The relationship between positive thinking and health is just as strong.

The Many Layers of Positivity

A happy, worry-free state of mind about sums up positivity but there are some underlying layers that make this mindset possible. In a nutshell, positivity is a belief system that determines how you see yourself and the world around you. While this may sound like a “head-in-the-clouds” perspective, it has more to do with how you perceive life’s situations (both good and bad) and you react to them.

Another layer of positivity to consider has to do with self-talk or that seemingly random stream of thoughts that runs through your head throughout the day. If negative thoughts populate most of your inner chatter, it can be really hard to choose, let alone maintain, a positive outlook. Much like the effects of negativity on your health, the power of positive thinking is real.

Ways Positivity Can Improve Your Physical Health

Positivity Effects on Emotional Well-Being

Numerous studies have examined the link between a positive attitude and health. One particular study conducted by the University of San Francisco worked with people living with H.I.V. infection. Study participants were instructed to incorporate daily practices that were specifically designed to promote positive emotions. Daily practices included things like building a healthy social support network, paying more attention to the good things in their lives, and fostering behaviors that promote good health, such as eating right and getting proper rest. Results from the study showed the participants were less likely to need antidepressants to cope with their illness.

Positivity Effects on Aging

The effects of chronic stress reach all the down into our DNA, shortening DNA telomeres. Telomeres are the “end caps” on DNA molecules and they gradually shorten with age. With shorter telomeres, the body’s cells deteriorate and die off, which is what happens as the body ages. These cells are also more prone to becoming cancerous. The link between positive thinking and health can have a significant impact on telomere health along with other lifestyle improvements, such as regular exercise and healthy eating.

Positivity Effects in Addiction Recovery

Traditional approaches in addiction recovery place a heavy emphasis on positive attitude and health as can be seen in the central role support therapies play in helping individuals build drug-free lifestyles. Drug and alcohol rehab programs, across the board, understand the crucial role destructive thinking patterns play in driving substance abuse. Replacing this mindset with one that views and approaches self and daily life circumstances from a productive standpoint is an ongoing theme in the addiction recovery process.

Tips on How to Stay Positive

You can see the power of positive thinking at work in your life by making a few tweaks in your thinking and overall approach to daily life. Here are a few tips to consider:

  • Replace negative self-talk with positive self-talk
  • Look for the humor in daily life events and laugh as often as possible
  • Identify the “negative” areas of your life and focus on seeing the positive in each area
  • Spend time with positive people

While developing positivity doesn’t typically happen overnight, it can be done when you’re intentional about it. Making positivity and health work to your advantage can go a long way towards enhancing your quality of life.

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Author Bio: Patrick Bailey is a professional writer mainly in the fields of mental health, addiction, and living in recovery. He attempts to stay on top of the latest news in the addiction and the mental health world and enjoy writing about these topics to break the stigma associated with them.

Website / Blog URL: http://patrickbaileys.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Pat_Bailey80

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/patrick-bailey-writer

Sources –

1 – University of Minnesota, “How Do Thoughts and Emotions Affect Health?”

https://www.takingcharge.csh.umn.edu/how-do-thoughts-and-emotions-affect-health

2 – The University of San Francisco, “Randomized Controlled Trial of a Positive Affect Intervention to Reduce Stress in People Newly Diagnosed with HIV; Protocol and Design for theIRISS Study”

http://repository.usfca.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1030&context=soe_fac

3 – Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care, “Telomeres, Lifestyle, Cancer, and Aging”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3370421/

4 – National Institute on Drug Abuse, “Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (Alcohol, Marijuana, Cocaine, Methamphetamine, Nicotine)”

https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/evidence-based-approaches-to-drug-addiction-treatment/behavioral-therapies/cognitive-behavioral-therapy

5 – Sunshine Behavioral Health, Inpatient Alcohol Rehab Options”

https://www.sunshinebehavioralhealth.com/alcohol-addiction/alcohol-rehab/

 

 

 

What’s Been Going On

This was originally posted on my personal blog Well Color Me

V=Back in December, I got sick. I thought it was just a sinus infection. The doctor gave me meds and it went away. All was well in my world, or so I thought. Less than a month later, the sinus infection along with a horrible cough was back. The doctors were reluctant to give me another antibiotic, which I get, because they don’t want to over prescribe. They gave me cough medicine with codeine, and Benzonatate, neither of which did jack for my cough.

I was miserable, people I work with were sick of listening to me cough all day long, and my family was over hearing me cough all night long. Back to the doctor I went and they decided that another antibiotic was indeed in order. Again, it worked and all was well in my world.

Until the cough came back with a vengeance. Nothing was touching this cough. I ate cough drop after cough drop, I tried using a neti pot, over the counter cough remedies and home remedies. And still my cough remained, so back to the doctor I went.

They decided that the best course of treatment was a steroid, coupled with a chest x-ray. My chest had been clear all through this, but they just wanted to make sure. So I took the steroid and I had the chest x-ray. It was a miracle, the steroid worked and my cough went away. But then the call came – my lymph nodes were enlarged and they wanted to do a CAT scan.

So I scheduled the CAT scan and had the necessary blood work done for that – or so I thought. The phlebotomist who drew the blood did a crappy job and I had a bruise and a lump on my arm that could probably be seen from outer space. My students kept asking who bit me, it was that bad. I also got my cough back which resulted in another round of steroids. And as I found out the day of the CAT scan, she didn’t run the right tests. I was ready to walk out then and there because I did not want more blood drawn, but the nice tech at the CAT scan place drew some blood before she hooked up the IV I needed and ran the test really quick.

The cat scan was painless and done very quickly and the results came fairly quickly as well. Yes my lymph nodes were enlarged and my doctor referred me to someone for a biopsy. Now I was starting to get scared. They were tossing out words like lymphoma and another word I had never head of, sarcoidosis. My doctor sent me to another doctor. I went for the appointment and the next thing I know they’re escorting me to another doctor in the hospital who wants to see me right away. “But don’t worry, nothing is really wrong,” they said. “We’re just going to walk you right over there.” Yeah, that freaked me out. I met with the nice doctor and he decided that the biopsy was going to be done next week. “It’s not really a big deal but we want to get it done right away.” Sorry, but all this stuff happining fast screamed big deal to me, but hey, what do I know, right? Anyhow, the biopsy was scheduled and I was quietly freaking out.

I had the biopsy, and the doctor told me I’d probably get the results in 5 to 7 days. I also got another a funnerific cough courtesy of the endoscopy tube shoved down my throat. I was quite surprised when the doctor called me the next night to give me the results. I was confident all along that it wasn’t lymphoma, and I was right. But it is sarcoidosis. He also heard my delightful cough and prescribed another round of steroids. I should be ballooning up like Violet Beauregard from Willie Wonka fame any time now.

After I got my new script filled, I did what any other person in my position would have done. I took to the interwebs to find information. I went to intelligent sites like Mayo Clinic and Web MD but then I made a HUGE mistake and I turned to facebook and looked for support groups. I thought I would find a lot of information from people dealing with the same thing, and there was some good information, but there was also a lot of poor me and boo hoo and I’m so miserable. I get it. I really do. I’m feeling all whiney and boo hooey myself, but I refuse to get in a funk about this. I’m a huge proponent of positive thinking, and I do believe that your mental outlook can go a long way toward repairing your body.

So where I stand right now is in a sea of uncertainty. I don’t know who I’m supposed to be seeing for treatment, I don’t know what type of sarcoidosis I have – apparently there are many different types. I don’t know anything other than I’m on a steroid. I don’t like not knowing anything, but that’s where I am right now. I guess I’ll be reaching out to my doctor to find out what is next in this process of healing and getting this disease into remission. I’ve been slacking a bit on my diet, my doctor actually said just to wait until I got the biopsy dealt with and school was out, because my stress level has been sky high. She didn’t see any point in worrying about keto and macros and all that because I was just stressing out more.

I know that eating healthy will be good and exercising is good, and eliminating stress is also good. However, it’s hard to exercise when you are coughing up a storm, and stress, well I’m a magnet for stress, but I’m still going to try. It’s small baby steps. Like I’m not doing serious keto and I’m not counting macros, but I’m not going to eat french fries and potato chips all day every day. I can’t do hard core exercise right now, but I can walk, and if I have to stop and cough, so be it. As far as the stress goes – I really just need this school year to be done. That is a big part of my stress right there for reasons I won’t go into here, but anyone who knows me knows what I’m talking about!

I have this disease, but this disease does not have me.

Changing your life

I am all about making changes in my life.  I have tons of great ideas about things I want to do to change my life.  I may not be so great with the follow through, but that’s a blog for another day.  Anyhow, back to changing your life.  We all have different vehicles we use to bring about change in our lives.  This website is one of mine.  But I recently read an amazing article about changing your life.  It’s written by Kathleen McGovern, and it’s called.  How To Change Your Life With One Word.  Ms. McGovern says a lot of great things in her article, but this stands out for me….you need clarity and sustained focus over time.

The whole article is great, and I encourage you to read it here, but that one phrase really resonates.  You can’t exercise once and then be healthy or cut back on the junk food for a day and be skinny (oh how I wish that were true).  Nor can you pick up a book and look at it once and think you’ll be prepared for a test the next day. Changing your life takes time and focus, but there are some things you can do to really help you along your way.

Check out the article and let me know what you took away from it, because I truly loved it!

My Book is Available on Amazon! Let’s Celebrate!!

I have some really exciting news to share.  My new book Thinking Positive: Take the Journey to Positivity is available on amazon.come.

In a world where we are constantly bombarded with negativity, one of the best things we can do is to think in a positive manner. Thinking Positive: Take the Journey into Positivity will provide you with tips, tricks and tools to develop a more positive outlook.  To say I’m excited is an understatement.  I can’t wait for you to read it and let me know what you think!

Let’s Connect

Hi Everyone – I’m really hoping to start some meaningful conversations around the topic of positive thinking.  I’ve started a facebook group which you can find here to us as a forum for people to talk about positive thinking.  I want to hear what works for people and what doesn’t.  I think we all have a lot to share and we can really help one another.  Watching the news and reading the paper, I see so much negativity in this world, and I want to combat it, with one positive thought at a time.  But I need help.  I need YOUR help.

So why not stop by and share a tip or a trick, or ask a question.

I Love Ted

Yesterday, I was scrolling through Facebook when I came across a Ted Talk by Susan David. I watched it, and really enjoyed it, and then I moved on to something else. But I didn’t stop thinking about it. It was percolating in the back of my mind as I connected it to this, that, and the other, including a blog post I wrote this week.  Dr. David, of course, spoke far more eloquently than I wrote, and I really think it’s worth watching.  So press play, and then let me know what you think 🙂

Just in Case

I came across this image today, and I promptly shared it everywhere.  I think we should all read it to yourselves or say it to ourselves every morning.

In case you forgot to remind yourself this morning…your butt is perfect. Your smile lights up the room. Your mind is insanely cool. You are way more than enough, and you are doing an amazing job at life.

I know I’ve blogged about this before, but we are our own worst enemy.  Seriously!  I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t talk to my worst enemy the way I talk to myself.  My internal monologues are filled with disgust about myself, my life, my eating habits, my laziness, basically, my everything.  Let’s just take eating habits for a second.  Yeah, my eating habits are not the greatest, but neither are the eating habits of a lot of other people.  There will be times when we’ll be pigging out on junk food and someone will comment on how bad they are eating or how much weight they need to lose.   To them I will say supportive things. “It’s okay to take a break from eating healthy,” or “Splurge today and get right back on the healthy eating wagon tomorrow.”  I will always try to be supportive and positive but when it comes to me, I’m ripping myself apart for what I may have eaten.

I constantly talk down to myself.  In my mind, I am fat, ugly, lazy and stupid, and everything I do is wrong.  I don’t think I’m alone in this hateful self-talk.  I don’t understand why we do this to ourselves.  I don’t know what happened to me to make me be so dissatisfied with the person that I am, but I do know that it needs to change.  Am I a perfect person?  No, of course not.  Are there things I need to improve about myself?  Absolutely.  Are those things worthy of the self-loathing, and hate I heap upon myself?  No.  I do not deserve that kind of talk, and what’s amazing is if anybody else talked to me that way, I’d be inclined to punch them in the face.  At the very least, I’d tell them to shut up, walk away and probably cut them out of my life.  And yet I continue to take the abuse I heap upon myself, and I think I’m not alone.

So while I’m not a big resolution person, I think I am going to make one this year.  I’m going to start treating me, and talking to me they way I treat others and talk to others.  I’d like all of you to join me in this.  Make 2018 the year of loving yourself.  2018 is the year of loving me!

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