May is Mental Health Awareness month.
Anxiety and depression are the most common mental illnesses for adults over 50 in the US.
According to a 75 year study on happiness from Harvard University, what happens in our fifties determines the quality of our future life. Ted Talk
Unchecked and over time, anxiety and depression affect all areas of our life:
Health - It can become stale, we can experience weight gain
Prosperity - We become blinded to new opportunities
Relationships - There is no vibrancy in our communication, we can become empty vessels
In this state, you can begin the slippery slope to doom and gloom.
There are many ways to avoid this slippery slope. The Asian cultures have great suggestions. Some of them are;
1) Feng Shui. We can optimize our home’s energy every year.
As time changes, so does the quality of our space. If we are already depressed and anxious, occupying a space that has low vibration could send us further down.
We want to spend most of our time in optimized spaces so that we can vibrate higher, not lower.
Being aligned with positive energies give us momentum and growth so we can achieve harmony and prosperity. Happiness can happen in small everyday increments.
Using Feng Shui principles and a compass direction, a trained consultant can find the spot to break the “spell” of a negativity.
Activating a specific area of a home and increasing the positive energies can help stop the downward slippery slope.
2) Take a nature “bath”. The Japanese have a term for this that translates into “forest bathing”. Shinrin-yoku is the cornerstone for preventive health and healing in Japanese medicine.
3) Yoga is a great body and mind exercise. There are many benefits of this ancient technique that has become more popular in recent years.
4). Qi Gong. After every session my teacher would tell us to swallow our saliva.
It turns out, there is something called salivary amylase activity. After an exercise like yoga or qigong and by measuring the enzymes in our salivas after exercise, scientists have found that stress indicators are lowered.
5). Meditation. Even corporate America’s top executives have embraced this technique to stay motivated.
6.) Gratitude for everything.
There are many other wonderful choices out there to bring us into the journey of inner peace. For some it may be to experience things that are out of our comfort zone. This may entail energy work and being open to new experiences.
For me, simple moments bring me peace and happiness, like
Seeing our dog pacing before her daily car ride. She gets so excited, it is contagious.
Small but deep talk and observations with our kids, is another. Knowing that they trust us to share their inner feelings give us enormous satisfaction.
The taste of home grown veggies from our neighbors, because everything tastes delicious.
Caring friends and family near and afar.
The vibrant colors of nature after a gentle rain.
Without taking time to cultivate inner peace and mental health, these moments can become insignificant and life can become gray and tasteless.
As our life span increases, it would do us good to increase the quality of our life.
A life well lived is measured by the times you feel joy, by loving others around you and by small unforgettable moments.
It is about living a life of no regrets everyday.
A life well lived is about creating a lifestyle of good relationships with people and nature.
If you'd like to know more or have questions, please follow this link.