Finding happiness after isolation or depression can be challenging. 2020 has shaped and changed the way we do things and interact with one another. Below we have a free booklet for you to download that can help you get back on track after a tough year.
In my case, I felt my freedom restricted and saw my work-life turned upside down. Although I know I was not the only one, I was fortunate to have had supportive people around me to talk to.
Struggling in my day-to-day life, when my partner asked me what was wrong, I tried to explain while overcome with emotion. Isolation had somehow taken a toll on me without me realizing it. My life had done a complete shift with all my life plans thrown up in the air. I felt unstable emotionally and financially, as I worked harder than ever to stay afloat. It forced me to release everything that was in order to slow down and reassess what was important to me. With any kind of life-changing transformation comes a certain amount of pain and growth and this can trigger things like depression, anxiety, or loneliness.
HOW COVID AFFECTED ME
Depression affects so many of us for various reasons. At the time I didn’t want to admit I was falling into a funk, but it was happening. My spark for life had gone and my passions for all the things I loved to do seemed so unimportant. I felt edgy and ungrounded and didn’t know how to get back on track. Socializing was the last thing I wanted to do and the more I hid away the more people came looking for me.
I hated committing to things and taking responsibility for anything. What I didn’t realize was that I was developing some bad habits.
My exercise routine stopped and I was sitting for the majority of the day in front of a laptop. Work was somewhat non-existent and I had no purpose. Except to eat when I was hungry and sleep when I was tired, which was pretty much always. I had never been without the direction of some sort, but here I was lost. I am ashamed to say that even getting dressed in the morning or doing my hair seemed like a trying activity. Waking up each day with a new pain in my back or neck, was just another warning symptom.
I disliked the way I looked and avoided doing anything about it, watching my body and posture change for the worse.
My jeans no longer zipped up as my track pants became my go-to attire. Until one day, when I cracked. Admitting I was no longer recognizable to myself I had to make a fast change in order to save me and my relationship from my self-sabotaging mindset.
HOW TO KNOW IF YOUR FEELING ISOLATED OR DEPRESSED?
As we all go through a shift in the world and our own lives, it’s easy to feel stuck. Fear of the unknown can drive you into overthinking and keep you in a repetitive cycle of indecisiveness. However, it is essential to feel your emotions, as they usually trigger other things meant for you to work through. It is also necessary to know when to step in and take action towards a change.
With so many pressures placed on us from society, making time to disconnect from the world has become a vital way of coping. After all, we are still human, and the robotic isolating routine and direction that our lives have gone in have become so inhumane.
Emotional stress can take its toll on our bodies, not only mentally but physically as we are all responsible for ourselves and, in some cases, our families.
So, making a routine to exercise, eat well, and balance out your priorities is necessary. An article by Time, suggests that the more emotions or conflicts a person experiences, the more anxious they feel. Not so great for an empath, like myself (lol). Emotional signals are triggered in the brain, which is linked to the heart, lungs, and intestines. The role that emotions play in one’s physical health shouldn’t be overlooked lightly.
False Beliefs & The Power of Thought
When we address our emotions and get to the root of the feeling, we can release it, no longer being afraid. Doing so makes us more emotionally intelligent and brings awareness around it for when that same emotion may present itself once again. The more we practice addressing feelings and thoughts, the better we can become at understanding ourselves.
We all have our own beliefs about ourselves and life, whether they be passed on to us or developed along our life journey. Most of us don’t even pause to look at our own beliefs and analyze them. We go about our daily lives listening to our self-talk and thoughts like our rules to life.
Our thoughts program our actions and emotions, whether they stem from our conscious or subconscious mind. For example, if you have a false belief about earning a living needs to be a struggle, then it will be that way.
Some of the Symptoms You May be Experiencing if you are Feeling down
Difficulty making decisions
Lack of purpose in life
Loss of sexual desire
Worries about the future
Loss of freedom or feeling trapped
Unable to see the joys in life
Feeling like a victim
Changes in your sleeping or eating patterns
Lack of motivation or passion
Developing bad habits e.g. not wanting to be active, not taking part in self-care or hygiene activities.
Preferring to stay alone or indoors
How to Feel Relief Right Now
Finding happiness after isolation or depression can be obtained when you shift your energy to gratitude. Everyday list three things soon as you wake up and ask yourself what you are grateful for? Write down a list of items, no matter how challenging it may seem. Once you start, it will be like a domino effect.
There are always things you can appreciate. Keep the list somewhere you can see it. When you feel down, you can focus on these things.
This will help boost your positivity and change your way of thinking.
Focus on what you have in your life, your loved ones, friends, and comforts.
Please make time to sit with your feelings and process them. Sometimes things can occur that are out of our control. If you focus on something you cannot control, then remind yourself that keeping your energy in fear will only encourage more.
Take time out from the media, TV, Radio, and negative people. It will only keep you focused on fear-based emotions. Spend time reconnecting with yourself by creating a peaceful environment at home or connecting with the natural world.
Techniques to Try when Building New Habits to Reconnect with Yourself
Happiness is a habit, so that means instead of training yourself to stay stuck in the rut you are in. Finding happiness after isolation or depression is possible by using one or more of these daily routines to pick yourself up.
- Add Meditation to your routine. Start with a few minutes a day. You can read our beginners meditation
- Go for a walk, fresh air and time outside is an excellent way to stay grounded
- Try to read something uplifting to shift your mood. Here are some book suggestions for you
- Write how you are feeling, be honest with yourself and then read it back to yourself out loud
- Write down the advice you would give your friend in this situation. Then read it back to yourself
- Call a friend to chat, so often, we disconnect ourselves. Make an effort to be social. Organize to meet up with someone who makes you feel good
- Try a yoga session at home. I have used an app called down dog. It is free, and you can choose the level and time you want to practice, however, there are many others out there
- Practice learning a new skill through Skillshare. They have a 2month free trial
- Learn to care for something. Sometimes just getting outdoors or growing something of your own can make you feel good. I learned how to develop an avocado from seed. To see it flourish now into a healthy plant makes me feel good every time I look at it. Otherwise, plant a herb garden for you to use when you are cooking.
- Cook something nutritious, make it about self-care. Play some music in the background to bring up your mood and put all your love and energy into preparing a wonderful meal for yourself, no matter how simple.
- Treat yourself to a bunch of flowers. Go to a florist store and spend time looking at plants or flowers. Buy a bunch and have them displayed somewhere you can enjoy them; flowers are beautiful just being in their presence in an energy changer.
- Spend some time in nature. Let yourself enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells.
- Do something you enjoy that will make you feel good. Play an instrument, write, participate in a small act of kindness.
- Start speaking positively to yourself, fake it until it feels real
Download your free e-book to Finding happiness after isolation or depression
Feeling down & want to know how to pick yourself up? Download our free happiness e-book. Sign up for our Newsletter to receive these books and more directly to your inbox.
The critical thing to remember is every action requires motivation. If you can find what motivates you to change, you will most likely succeed in changing your habits. It is only natural for us to fall into a rut now and then. This is what causes us to shake up our lives and hit the reset button. Learning that you cannot control every aspect of your experience means you should focus on what you can control, such as how you react or feel to a situation. Staying grounded even when you feel like the mat is being pulled out from under you is vital. We have always been vulnerable to life since the day we were born. So, finding happiness after isolation or depression is achievable.
In my case, I was fortunate enough to have the support I needed from loved ones and admit to myself that I needed to make a drastic change quickly. Sure, there are still days when I feel sad but now I don’t let them last too long. It really is a way of thinking, your thoughts can either consume you or lift you up.
Set goals for yourself, make plans towards the future life you want to see unfold, even if right now it seems impossible. Don’t let today’s battles be the focus, let your desires & happiness be the only battle you fight for.
If you enjoyed this article, follow Ahlia Rose and view more of her written self-help guides on various topics like this.