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Seven Ways Meditation Helped Me Out of Deep Depression

Medication is not always the answer

photo: Flickr: Andrea Ariel

I didn’t know or understand who I was. It’s like I was a small person operating a flesh robot. I was on autopilot. I tried my best to accomplish my daily tasks as a mother and wife, but some days I just couldn’t muster enough strength. I was at a loss for words. I couldn’t explain how I felt to anyone, not even a therapist. Therapy didn’t work for me.

The therapist tried to help by offering soothing words and different activities, but more importantly, they wanted me to take drugs. I tried the medications to no avail, they made me sleep the day away, and I couldn’t function at all. Medication is not always the answer. I didn’t like the way they made my body feel or the side effects. I felt helpless with nobody to turn to and nowhere to run.

I was helpless. I still had to be a mom and a wife and go to work. But how was I supposed to do all of these things if I didn’t feel like myself? I couldn’t. The feeling became worse and worse, and I spent as much time as possible in my bed. I began withdrawing from everything and everyone. This feeling had taken over my mind, body, and life.

I wanted out. I needed to get back to myself again, but everything that was supposed to work didn’t. I had to find my way back to myself. I was determined to find a solution that back to feeling like myself. I bought a small meditation set. It came complete with a soundtrack, a book of poses and a guide explaining how to begin the practice. The results were amazing. Here are Seven ways meditation helped me out of a deep depression:

  1. Slow down.Meditation taught me to slow down. Life moves at a fast pace, and we are expected to do so many things in a day. We suffer from feelings of inadequacy when we fail to get everything accomplished on our daily mental list. If we allow ourselves time to slow down and process life instead of continually moving on to the next task it would positively affect our mental wellbeing.

  1. Say No. I learned to say no. We can’t do it all, and we should never burden ourselves trying. Trying to do everything burns us out and prevents us from being our best selves. Learning to say no and making others respectful of our time and personal value is essential to being our best selves. If we always say yes people will take us for granted and feel that our time is not precious or useful.

  1. Take some me time every day. Meditation makes me take time alone daily. Sometimes we need space for our thoughts or just to be unbothered by anyone or anything for some part of the day. Sometimes our daily lives can become overwhelming; it’s ok to acknowledge the feeling and take some time and space to decompress.

  1. Visualize the feeling you want to feel. Meditation helped me to recall my happiest moments and allowed me to spend some time there feeling happy. Think of your most joyful moments, and imagine yourself feeling happy and complete again. Try this every day when you are alone with your thoughts.

  2. Breathe before everything. When you feel yourself becoming stressed, take a few deep slow inhales and exhales. Deep breathing has a calming effect on the brain and body and will help ease the tension from the situation. It will also help to prevent acting on impulse. It encourages one to examine the case before making rash decisions.

  1. Figure out your hobby. Meditation helped me to remember the things I used to love. Take some time once a week and devote it to something that interest you. Often we get wrapped up in the lives of our family that we forget to do things that we love for ourselves. If there is nothing of particular interest for you, that means try everything until you find what you like.

  1. Realize that healing takes time. This was the hardest. Nobody goes back to normal immediately. Healing is a process, and you can take as much time as you need to heal. There is no race, and everyone is different. It’s perfectly fine if your process takes longer than someone else’s. It is better to take your time than to rush through the recovery process and have a relapse.

Mental health is as important as physical health. We absolutely can not have one without the other. Just like the healing of a wound goes through a process before the skin returns to normal, we too must undergo a healing process before we are normal mentally. There is value in self-care, we can not be our best if we are not whole mentally or physically. Everyone’s healing process and time are different, and that is fine because we are not all the same. Life is better when we are mentally healthy.

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