Hello and welcome to r/LifeProTips! Please help us decide if this post is a good fit for the subreddit by up or downvoting this comment. If you think that this is great advice to improve your life, please upvote. If you think this doesn't help you in any way, please downvote. If you don't care, leave it for the others to decide.


Got my thyroid checked. Seriously.


Me too, and also my Vitamin B12 was dangerously low. This can cause symptoms of depression, forgetfulness, fatigue etc. It is very dangerous


Vitamin D is another one to look out for, particularly if you don't get out in the sun much. But yeah, getting on thyroid meds was a big change, I could barely move beforehand, my energy levels were so low. Plus my psychiatrist mentioned it's also used as an adjunct med for treatment resistant depression in certain cases.


I have to second this. I had some health issues a while back that were relly challenging my mental health. In the process of getting testing done for that they found I was severely deficient in vitamin D. They had me take a boatload of it and the next day all my problems seemed so much more solvable.


Wish this was higher. Vitamin deficiencies can definitely change our mood


This is good, valid advice. I was having all kinds of upsetting mental episodes like anxiety and stress and crying randomly while also falling asleep sitting on the couch and cold all the time. I started seeing a therapist because I thought it was stress from Covid or work. After I got so upset over a seemingly innocuous event, I went to see my PCP about Wellbutrin at my therapists recommendation. My PCP tested my thyroid antibodies (TPO & TAg test) and discovered I have Hashimotos. Got on medicine and have felt normal again.


I've had Hashimotos for just over 40 years and IF you ever feel like Synthroid is making you feel like not-you, there are alternatives like Armour Thyroid (harder to get, made from dessicated pig thyroid) and liothyronine (T3 instead of T4). Some people don't process T4 supplementation well, some docs will tell you it's Synthroid or nuthin, but there are options. There is a study in New England Journal of Medicine (Feb 1999) that indicates T3 and T4 supplementation have better impact on cognitive performance and mood. It's old, I know, and hopefully T4 alone is all you need. But if not ... Check into getting T3 and T4.


Thanks for this input. I take a combo of Synthroid and Cytomel for this reason. I agree many struggle with JUST Synthroid. My endo wants to run a hormone panel this summer and consider armour if I’m still feeling bad. Thanks for the input. Also good advice.


Literally had my second 6 month test results today confirming I have hypothyroidism. Starting me on 50mg of thyroxine from today. Already done the iodine increase etc and no improvement. Medicine time. Having my first tablet in like 3hrs before bed.


And? I just had all my blood work done Monday. I read that thyroid issues can make you very anxious.


Yeah thyroid issues can have huge impact on your mental health. I guess it just depends on if you’re hyper or hypo. I was severely hyper, and it was wild for a moment there. Ain’t nothing ever kicked my ass quite like my own endocrine system.


I started doing tasks as they came up, instead of avoiding them. I was spending so much mental energy thinking about doing the thing, but if I just do it, it’s not even a blip on my radar.


I read a book a long time ago, maybe 15 years ago so I cannot remember the title or author but this stuck with me "If it annoys you, address it right away". Some of the best advice I have ever read. E.g. if you walk by your garage everyday and it needs a coat of paint, getting aggravated is bad for your mental health, go grab some paint and remove it from your mindspace.


My mom used to always say something similar but with respect to tasks that make you anxious. "The longer you wait to do it, the longer you have to be anxious about it. But the faster you do it, the quicker you can stop being anxious."


If you are anxious about a task you haven't fully committed to procrastination yet. The suffering exists in the hope that you aren't the shittiest most worthless person ever. Once you give up, accept you hate yourself and never try to change life gets a lot easier. You'll never be able to get any dopamine outside the panic flow state you've learned to master. There's no reason to be anxious until the last day of the deadline because there's no realistic chance that worrying will actually lead you to do any work anyway. Source: Either the worst person ever or potentially an undiagnosed attention disorder, one of the two


The panic flow state… but ur actually so right. I one time described the feeling of busting out like a 3 day project at the very end as being on heroin, there’s nothing like it lmao.


Helped greatly by learning to let go of the drive to do a thing fully or not at all. Waiting for coffee to brew? Wash a pot. Get the rest later. Going upstairs? Grab one of the things on the steps. Get the rest later. Can't face cleaning the bathroom? Wipe down the sink or put cleaner in the bowl. Finish it later. It makes it easier to face a task when you're just doing whatever portion you can and then what's left is less. Better is better than not better.


The amount of times I’ve told myself “it doesn’t have to be the best, just better. Not perfect, just better. Five minutes work is better than zero.”


this is HUGE. I have a friend who also likes to say "you can do *anything* for 15 minutes." (Not sure if she cribbed that from a source, so apologies if I am not attributing that correctly) That mindset helps so much - 15 minutes of tending to something that I am thinking of as a multi-hour "project." I am often surprised at how far I actually get in the 15 minutes.


And to add to this: just making a written list. Then I don't need to maintain it in my brain


This was a big deal for me. My ADHD brain kept offloading tasks (and worrying about tasks) to future me, which is kinda rude to future me, and which also resulted in way more work and worry than if I'd just have present me do them. So I just started doing that. The only downside is feeling foolish with how little time these tasks end up taking when I just do them right away.


Couldn't implement this without meds, but yes, it's a bog one to not always create huge mental load for really minor tasks.


This is my current major struggle with ADHD. Even with meds, I struggle so bad with my executive dysfunction, and I just keep putting things I need to do off. The worst example currently is that I need to clean my shoes, something that takes approximately 2 minutes of work to do. But either I forget about it or I tell myself I'll do it later, rinse and repeat for weeks.




The "if it won't take more than 2 minutes, do it now" rule is magic


"Once you've got a task to do, it's better to do it than to live in the fear of it" - Logen Ninefingers


Sleeping 8 hours a night. Used to sleep 3-6 and upping it to 8 regular hours was game changing. Daily walks outside for 15-20 minutes was shockingly great too. The sunshine and all. Exercising has taken up a lot of my free time, but it’s also given me a lot of energy I’ve been lacking.


Agree. Lack of sleep was hands down my biggest problem from 18-24. I had no idea it could have such a big impact on me… I would go to sleep at 2am and rush into work for 9am. I was depressed day in, day out. My attitude, sensitivity to criticism, interactions with others, energy.. everything was impacted. I’m glad I’ve realised this now.


Sufficient sleep is so underrated. I’m a young adult and many of my friends sleep so little. I envy that they can function decently, because I’d be a complete mental wreck with that little sleep.


It catches up. I wouldn’t envy them. I’m same way. But now as I get older, I need less sleep to function. (30s)


Have you ever considered that your friends are actually mental wrecks below the surface?


Truly. Valuing my sleep even if it’s bed before 9 has changed my game.


I would love to know what it’s like to sleep 8 hours. I can only get that kind of sleep after staying up for 30-something hours. On a normal night, I can go to bed at any time and IF I can shut my brain off enough to fall asleep, I will wake up 5-6 hours later and not be able to sleep any longer.


This might not work for you, I used to be the same (and now and again still sleep 5 hours from 9pm and that's me done), but I've found forcing myself to have a consistent time I'll go to bed and then read for half an hour before I attempt to sleep has really helped me be a bit more consistent and to fall asleep better - I used to really struggle to switch my brain off too!


The sleep was it for me. Hated the concept of spending a third of my life unconscious. Would stay up late playing video games or watching movies. Then get up early to work on 4-5 hours of sleep and blasted through the day on 4-5 cans of diet soda. Was severely depressed and tried many SSRIs with no improvement. One day I just decided to maybe get 8 hours of sleep, and after two months, I was a changed man. Don't drink soda anymore, not on meds, and am not depressed at all. Who knew the solution (for me) was just accepting my biology.


>Sleeping 8 hours a night. I’m reading this at 4:55 am after not being able to sleep for even one second tonight. Tomorrow’s gonna be fun at work. Yay insomnia!


I want to re-state what you said about sleep. It's not about quantity, it's quality. You can easily sleep less than 8 hours a night if it's natural and you get higher quality sleep. After I fixed a few things, I noticed I would naturally wake up sooner than 8 hours. That doesn't mean it's unhealthy. Basically, you should sleep, no alarm, and be able to wake up before your alarm.


I finally got off my ass and went to the doctor. After 3 years of feeling weird, 1 year of worsening symptoms, and finally 7 months of missing periods I decided to see a doctor about it. Another month of blood draws and an MRI and I was diagnosed with a benign brain tumor that was the cause of everything including my hella anxiety and depression. I take meds now to starve and shrink the tumor and I'm feeling amazing now, but I still feel real dumb for not going sooner.


Seriously, nobody ever really thinks it’s a brain tumor.


The hypochondriacs always do


I'm thinking it right now!


How were you able to convince your doctor to test for a brain tumor? I've had anxiety/depression, brain fog, ADHD-type symptoms for years that I swear wasn't there when I was younger and everyday I wonder if it's a brain thing like a tumor. I've seen endocrinologists and psychiatrists and changed a lot of things like tried most ADHD meds, improving my health (lost 75 lbs), anxiety/depression meds, all sorts of things, but I feel like nothing's helping enough or getting to the root cause. I swear it's even getting worse sometimes but I can't explain it very well since it's a cognitive thing, and I'm otherwise kind of high functioning so I'm afraid doctors will say "pssh must not be so bad" or that it's all in my head.


I didn't need to convince them, really. I went in to my new GP and explained my symptoms and she said we should test my blood since it hadn't been done for awhile. Then after that revealed certain areas were not normal we tested again, for a lot more things, and we found a lot of my hormones were real wonky--some levels way too high and others non-existent. After that she ordered an MRI which found the tumor. Mine was probably easier to convince someone about because I had a very physical change happening by no longer having periods, but anyone getting a comprehensive blood test would definitely see something wasn't right.


I’m obviously not the person you asked, but sometimes you have to just straight up ask for what you want. You can literally say you read about someone with similar symptoms who ended up having a brain tumor, that you want an MRI (or whatever) to rule this out, and if they say no ask what else they expect you to do before they will screen for this. If they push back then ask how they can be sure this isn’t the problem without screening for it. It isn’t rude to advocate for yourself and a lot of times it’s necessary.


Just make sure to inquire about insurance coverage if you live in the states.


I take (almost) daily walks. The fresh air and sunlight help my mood, and walking is always very meditative for me.


I was ready to drag myself out of bed every morning to go for a walk… turns out I love it. Lol. It’s fantastic to take a 20 min walk outdoors in the morning.


Morning exercise routine in general is awesome. I was never a morning person until I was about 36ish. I always slept in as long as possible then scrambled to get ready and go to work. Something just changed. I start everyday with making my bed, vacuuming my place/tidying up, stretch/meditate, then either a run,row, bike, or HIIT for 20 mins to get blood flowing. Shower then walk to get coffee, sit down at my desk and get cracking. My brain and body just feels much better. Also try and get to bed between 10-11 5 days a week


I changed my normal gym time from over lunch, which was hard to get to anyway with work pressures anyway, to first thing in the morning after a cup of coffee. It really is amazing how much more mentally alert you feel if you go exercise in the morning. And I feel like I have done "something" other than just rolling out of bed into the office, so I have a life again and when I get home I crash on the couch. But it was sooo hard in the beginning to get up early, drag myself to the gym until it became a habit. I can see why anyone would put it off.


Damn how how long do you wake up before going to work?


He gets up an hour before he goes to bed. You get 25 hours in a day that way.


My shrink explains to me, getting up and walking around your surroundings first thing may help alleviate the watchful eye of the amygdala, allowing PTSD and anxiety suffers some sense of relief as they start their day. I just find that it brings up like 10 good memories or emotions and I *always* come back glad I went. Plus sometimes I greet neighbors or notice signs for upcoming events in the neighborhood. Which are both connection-related, very important. People come up to me say "Oh I've seen you around the neighborhood, I know you," and just start talking to me. It's kind of cool. Usually.


>help alleviate the watchful eye of the amygdala I also acquired too much insight in my journey through Yharnam. Can't stop seeing them all over the buildings.


Curse the fiends, their children too, and their children, forever true.


Fear the old blood


Especially if you're socially introverted those few 'hellos' can keep you connected to the world


We got a dog a couple years ago٫ and this has been the best unintended consequence. Walking the dog are the most zen parts of my day.


I used to listen to nothing other than my surroundings when walking the pup (been doing that for 9 years now) but since I realized I don't ever have time to *read* anymore I've been using dog-walking time for audiobooks. It's been great!


Username checks out


Came here to say this. Absolutely, 100%, without question the healthiest thing in the world. In about a dozen different ways actually, including mentally and emotionally. Bottom line: 2 million years of human evolution can't be wrong. Go walk.


Cool, sadly, i live in Argentina, so my only meditation is about my paranoia of getting robbed.


As a Costa Rican this is just so relatable. I moved to Australia 10 years ago and always feel grateful for not needing to be afraid of simply walking to the park, even with my mobile out! (In CR the best case scenario would be for it to get snatched without injury to you)


I had a co-worker who had moved with his family to Australia from South Africa. One day I had gone to a park near our office to eat lunch and was nearly falling asleep afterwards, and he was walking past to his car when he stopped and gave me an odd look, then said "this is why I moved here from South Africa, so that my wife and child can nap on a park bench in the sunshine without fear". I think of this often and it reminds me to be grateful that I was born here.


I remember doing a night shift at the groceries when a new South African family came past and said hi. They were dumbstruck that they would walk outside after night.. it was a surreal experience for them but a nightly occurrence for myself.


As Ryan Holiday said in one of his videos, there's almost no problem of yours which will get worse by going on a walk.


Did wonders for my busted femur.


I love my end of workout walks! Earbuds go in, I check the fuck out for an hour.


Do you listen to anything like podcasts or music, or just enjoy the silence?


I do sometimes but honestly we are overburdened with stimulus from media and I think letting your mind wander or even just relax and observe what's going on around you with no distractions is really healthy.


I’ve always taken daily walks, but I intentionally started taking them in silence at my therapists advice and it has been a game changer. She called it practicing “mindfulness” and it’s basically it’s just not having headphones in and taking the time to be super present and notice new things about your surroundings. I do it for like 30 minutes a day and my mental health has drastically improved.


Morning one with no media, afternoon one with a podcast, evening one with my wife (or with her if she’s able to make one of the others). I like the balance because I can relax, I can learn, and I can social and bond with my wife.


Speaking up for and being true to myself. I had always done things to make other people happy and suffered a lifetime of depression. Finally figured out that I was sick of living for other people!


Working on this currently…so hard!!! Rewarding/scary when I am able to do it though


Yes! During the pandemic I literally hit rock bottom and really just said f\*ck off to everyone. Now I am more even keeled and strategic with my words but still carry some of that attitude with me to maintain my mental health.


Me too. I've recently learned something. We all give others the respect *we* deserve. So i stopped blaming others for how they treat me, and instead take responsibility - for how i allow myself to be treated. This has helped me to stop overinflating my importance to people i care / cared about. I stopped calling and texting first, i stopped deluding myself by projecting *my* warm regard onto people where it is absent. Turns out that's all but one soul. All ghosted and gone, except one found family brother i'll still make an effort for, even though he'll never reach out first - his crippling self-doubt prohibits it. It just means i haven't found my people yet. In the meanwhile, i can enjoy my newfound self-respect.. alone. *I* am responsible for whether i am treated as a doormat.


Ayyyyy I have been through some similar inner changes. Learned a lot about boundaries, also working through a lot of abuse/neglect. But I don't feel like a helpless victim anymore, I'm learning how to spot red flags and how to assert myself. I've got good friends, a good relationship. I'm six years into "recovery", as in that's when I started making big changes. I do want people to know though- it's not your fault if you have been this way. You were conditioned into it from birth. There's no shame in not knowing, the shame lies in refusing to find out. We can learn how to have this respect for ourselves, and I promise you there are better people out there for you. You can't see them if you're busy pandering to assholes though. I recommend Patrick Teahan's channel on YouTube as a good place to start if you feel totally lost in this stuff. He's a clinical therapist specializing in childhood trauma, and at this point I'm pretty sure we all have some. It shaped me in ways I didn't know, and now I'm glad I can work on it myslef and not pass on toxic parenting strategies etc and hurt my own kids. I'd like to give them a little headstart from where I was in life and equip them with the skills and emotional stability to form healthy relationships and pursue their own goals. My rock bottom was realizing my kids didn't deserve to end up living like I was living before they were born. I realized if they didn't deserve it, I didn't either. I figure there had to be a better way, some way I could help them and help myself. Anyway I don't have all the answers but I'm on this journey and I think it's going pretty well!


This was so difficult for me because those around me got upset when I quit enabling them. I had to draw hard boundaries with people, and lost some who I thought were friends.


Yes same here. It’s like my family only loves me if I a, the way they want me to be. I’ve always known intuitively how to be that person for them. But then I met my life partner, and was able to become a truer version of myself. My family has been big time struggling with the transition of self. Which I’ve had to fight my feelings of guilt. But here I am, remaining true to self.


This has always been a challenge for me, growing up I've always been taught to be of service to others and help where needed and to put others before myself, it becomes a slippery slope when you keep letting others eat first, they keep eating (figuratively speaking).


When I truly accepted that fact that worrying about things would never actually change the outcome and that I was wasting emotional energy by worrying constantly. Over the years I’ve been able to let go and it has helped me so much. Also just getting older has helped my mental health too. The 20’s are so tumultuous for so many people.


Worrying is like a rocking chair… it gives you something to do, but it doesn’t get you anywhere.


+1 to what folks have said here— in the middle of a devastating divorce, I deleted all social media. I put time on my calendar every day to spend as much time outside as is possible in a day. Walking with a podcast on has completely changed my life. I also have recently started to incorporate 30 minutes in the sauna twice a week and it’s done wonders.


Can you elaborate on the effects of sauna that you have noticed?


Eating better. Cooking with real food at home. Avoid the fast food lanes. Yes it helps with physical health but it was amazing how much my MIND felt better when I had actual, good nutrient rich food. Also, going for walks.


I was hoping this one was gonna be here. I am 2 months solid on not eating out. Working in the kitchen has been very therapeutic.


I do meal prep on Sunday cause our work days end too late to prepare dinner at a reasonable time and it’s my zen time. My wife is usually out of the house when I’m doing it so I just put on music or some podcasts and get to it. This last week my wife was home and I found it distracting. Love my wife but since we were talking it wasn’t as meditative as I usually find it.


I recommend slow cookers for people who want to make food at home but don't have the energy, time, or skills to do anything fancy. It's *so easy* to just throw a bunch of stuff in there and then set an alarm to come back to it in anywhere from 2-12 hours. Fresh or frozen veg, lentils or beans or pasta, meat or meat-alternatives, tinned tomatoes, some form of flavouring (stock, spices, herbs, whatever), basically whatever you want to use just bang it in there. Be as fancy or simple as you like. Home-cooked food for minimal effort, and much healthier and cheaper than takeaway. Avoiding the siren song of that really good Indian place on the way home from work is much easier when you know you've already got your favourite curry waiting for you at home.


People are always saying to eat veggies and fruits but I would have taken it more seriously had people told me why to eat them. I had no idea just how big of an impact they have on your mood, productivity, and brain function (decision making, focus, patience, etc.). My partner and I started making healthy smoothies with lots of greens and berries and added more vegetables to our meals. We both noticed there was a significant difference in our mood and our productivity when it became more consistent. Not saying it can cure depression because that can stem from other problems, but it has helped us with thinking more clearly and just getting things done. Special shout out to blueberries, lion's mane mushrooms, tumeric with pepper, and chai. Adding any one of them to your diet is fantastic but trying them all out is like the dream team for the brain. I am trying not to make any promises that it will help everyone out, but this is what has worked personally for me and I stand by them. I also heard real olive oil is great for the circulatory system because of its anti-inflammatory properties, so I figure treating the highways that bring food to your brain couldn't hurt either.


To add to this. Drink water! I'm amazed how many people I know use pop (soda(coke, etc)) as a thirst quencher. I used to be that way too, and I always hated water. But like you said, nobody told me WHY to drink water. Other than that it's good for you yada yada. It's way more than that. It FEELS GOOD to drink water. I still don't love the taste, but I have a 32oz thermos that I refill and try to drink at least 2 or 3 of them a day, because I feel better when I do. If I start feeling crummy, or hungry when I know I just ate a bit ago, I think oh... I must be dehydrated, and I chug half that bottle. Boom, problem solved, I feel way better. When I get up in the morning, I don't crave pop or even coffee (heart defect means I can't have the caffeine anyway, though I still enjoy decaf coffee fairly regularly) no, I crave water. I chug a full glass in the morning, and after a few minutes I start to feel more alert and ready for the day. It's crazy. I still like pop, occasionally. But I literally treat it as the calorie dense liquid that it is. Like a dessert to a meal. I'm not on a diet, I don't watch what I eat that much. I try to get good veggies in me whenever I can, though sometimes dinner is just a quick ramen, it all depends. But pop? I'll feel gross if I drink it trying to quench my thirst. After a meal though? Yeah maybe, as a dessert. I still keep it in the house, and I don't like the diet stuff at all. I don't NEED pop, but I enjoy it occasionally. A few times a month I'd say. Don't know why I chose to rant here haha, but I guess thanks for coming to my TED talk 😬


Gave up booze. Has helped in lots of ways. Physically and mentally.


Bonus: I discovered I am actually a morning person if I am not hungover.


I cut out any alcohol a few years ago and my morning self is still as miserable as ever.


I take long breaks from drinking and this is my experience as well. I can not drink, get 8 hours of sleep, and still be a zombie at 8 am.


I'm 2 weeks in. It's going pretty well so far. Not dealing with hangovers. Way more money in the bank. I'm pretty happy about it. Just need to find other avenues for socialising now.


No one really wants to talk about it but eliminating alcohol has huge physical, mental, and financial benefits. It's definitely not easy in a culture that uses it as a crutch for most social rituals but so worth it.


I have been sober for over 4 years now. My mental health has improved tremendously. I have an app called “I Am Sober” that keeps track of days/months/years but it also keep track of how much money I’ve saved based on the amount I used to spend on alcohol… I am not even joking, it says I have saved $26,000.


Even reduction is helpful. I drink a lot less often than I used to, and feel great. Doing it judiciously makes it more fun since it's such a rare treat now.


Yep. I drink once a week now at most and the only time I ever drink consecutive days is during the holidays or big events like weddings. So much more fun now. It helps make these things feel like special occasions instead of obligations


i stopped drinking at 26 which felt hard at the time, but i’ve had a lot of people who stopped drinking later on in life tell me they wish they started when i did. i always say it’s the one thing you can remove that has a multitude of benefits like MickeyM191 mentions


Not that you need it, but just a reminder you did the right thing: my BIL passed away in January from sepsis that was caused by ulcerative colitis, which was caused by his alcoholism. Alcohol killed him. He was 46. I struggle with addiction myself. People don't realize how easy it is to get addicted to something.


I thought it was called the Alexander Technique, but I just looked that up and that’s not it, so now I don’t know, but… The concept of using the minimal physical effort for menial tasks and focusing on the actual, particular ONE task at hand. Turning a doorknob, washing a dish, putting away a glass…don’t rush, focus on just doing THAT thing. For example: if I’m putting a glass away. I don’t rush, and I focus on the fact that, my task right then is not to drop the glass, to make sure it gets put on the shelf, don’t bang another glass, etc. Not only does it give me a sense of calm to focus on such an easy, isolated moment, it prevents frustrating “dumb mistakes.” I don’t drop things, I don’t rush and knock over other things, break things, etc. I know it sounds so inane, but it’s helped me a lot.


this mindset helped my mom with her recovery from substance abuse. she calls it “being where your hands are,” it’s basically just focusing on what your hands are doing to keep you in the present moment. steering a car, washing a dish, unlocking a door, etc.


could you please tell her this is by far the best definition of mindfulness some rando online has ever come across. I have diagnosed but unmedicated adhd and this week's been bad so this absolutely made my day


Seriously. “Being where your hands are” instantly makes so much sense vs “mindfulness”. Love it!


What about things that don't require your hands? Not being a smartass, im asking because I bite my nails and chew my hands when I'm watching TV or doing other things that require attention but not hands. I've tried sitting on my hands and using fidgets but it's such a strong subconscious self soothing technique that I've had since childhood and I really hate it.


This might be difficult but In this case I’m actively *not* using my hands. Rather than no longer focusing on my hands since they’re not engaged in the task, I am focusing on their disengagement. “They are sitting by my side. They aren’t moving. Etc.” It’s like “playing the rest” in a musical piece. It’s not that you aren’t playing a note there, it’s that the note is silent.


Love that music analogy


Did you try knitting? An easy pattern doesn't need much attention, it can be done watching TV. It's not so artifical like fidgeting toys, a nice wool gives a pleasant feeling and you actually create something. Could be scarfs for the homeless or you put the pieces together later and have a blanket.


I really recommend knitting! I'm a figeter and former nail biter and it normally happens when I'm not stimulated enough. Just accepting that I can't just watch TV on it's own and I need a second activity has really helped. Embroidery, hand sewing, and knitting have all been great. Scrolling on my phone while watching a show also works, but feels a lot worse as you can imagine.


Ooh I can’t wait to read more about this - I do this kind of unconsciously (probably when I’m high tbh) but it allows such inner calm


>(probably when I’m high tbh) Same! I try to do it more often with everyday stuff, but it seems to happen more organically if I'm high. It's actually quite nice and I can feel my body calming down. Sometimes you don't realize how anxious/tense you are until you're not.




"Living in the moment"


I definitely need to try this, my brain never shuts up and I get distracted and end up with 75 tasks in varying levels of incompleteness. I used to be able to super multi task, now I can’t single task. Maybe I just need to start simple.


I have ADHD and I find focusing on the feeling and motions of each task (washing, sweeping, etc) make them more enjoyable and easy to do. For the dishes, I focus on the feeling of the soap, hot water, bubbles lathering on the dish, the smells of the soap and I might even verbally commend myself for getting rid of the bad (the old food/dirt) to make way for the new (good food to eat!). For sweeping I notice how nice my feet feel walking on a clean floor afterwards and during it’s the sound of the broom on the floor. Going to bed, I focus on my hands or head, what do I feel? If I feel like my heartbeat is in my head, I just focus on it and feel it. Just what is at that moment.


As far as I know that is mindfulness:)


This is a kind of "being mentally present" or mindfulness that you can use for a lot of things, but it's especially helpful if you have anxiety or panic disorders.


Real talk: I have bipolar disorder. Medication is very important for me. Yes, it is a rough ride getting it right. But nothing has ever been more worth it. Once I got stable, THEN I could manage with meditation, exercise, mindfulness and healthy habits. All those tips and tricks are helpful, but many people need to get to a base level of stability before lifestyle changes can make a significant difference. If you are in crisis, please give medication management a try. I work with families in poverty and so often I hear people tried but it was too hard or too many side effects or it didn’t work right away. It is hard. It doesn’t work right away. But you can do hard things! And you are worth the absolutely life-changing results!


This. I have bipolar 2 and I eat a very healthy diet, count my macros, drink TONS of water, practice self care, excersize 3x a week as well as working a physically demanding job, I try to take time for myself and do things I enoy. I stretch and do yoga occasionally at least once or twice a week. I read books. All the crap people will try to push on you that should make you "better" right? Guess what I'm still mentally ill. That stuff helps, absolutely! But i go into depressive episodes where I can even brush my fucking teeth and Linda on facebook thinks a brisk walk will cure me. Some people need medication and THATS OKAY!!! You have to walk before you can run, no pun intended. It should not be this difficult to feel "normal" while putting SO MUCH EFFORT in. I feel like I do sooo much right and it still doesnt change the way I am mentally. I have a new psychiatrist and i'm starting medication this month hopefully and I just honestly cannot wait.


>But i go into depressive episodes where I can even brush my fucking teeth and Linda on facebook thinks a brisk walk will cure me. "Yes, mom, exercising and making a schedule *do* sound like good ideas. I'll tackle them after I'm able to get out of bed and feed myself."


Yes and this applies with physical chronic illnesses too! There is great medication out there for many chronic illnesses but it’s a journey to find the right one.


no healthy habit I tried was half as effective as finding the right medication for me.


Thank you so much, I needed to hear this today!!


Stay off social media


But how would I learn all those tips to delete social media?


I deleted all of it from my phone, so now if I want to get on I have to make an active effort to get on my computer to check them, instead of just mindlessly switching between apps, as a result, I have not been on in months.


Turn off alerts, ringers and app badge notifications. I’ll check my email when I feel like it. I’ll see and respond to your text when I have the time to open it. I don’t need a bell setting off my fight or flight.


Vitamin D pills (with magnesium and k2 for balance) . Like 80% of the population is low or deficient which causes all sorts of problems


I was amazed at how much a vitamin d, multivitamin and iron pill helped me feel better. I'm super anemic so ask your doc what's right for you.


Magnesium and zinc just before you sleep. Sweet dreams.


Exercise and reading


Reading! It's like taking a break from yourself and the world and immersing yourself in a different world.


Working out consistently (weight training) helps into other aspects of life such as discipline for studying school and just feeling better about your self overall


This right here. I am close to 60yo and live a life obese and food motivated. The past year of weight training and diet changes have me being a very different person. This is my new me


I cannot stress this enough! I started working out last year, and it has done wonders for my mental and physical health. I'm in the best shape of my life, and the endorphins from the exercise, and accomplishments every time I break through a new barrier, does a lot to fight seasonal depression.


Add to that some music that you really enjoy and your set. I've been working out regularly for over 10 years. Just bought earbuds this year. Best money I've ever spent. Before music my mind would wander during a workout at times. With the right music it puts me in the zone... i had read studies of this before, but with gym music it didn't work for me and with a home gym it had to be quiet while the family is sleeping...


Riding a bicycle with regular frequency.


Started winter biking this year and it has been the most successful method for battling winter depression . Getting to work and already having a 30 minute ride in is life changing. Obviously I bike in the summer too but just needed to say that it's worth it in the winter if you live somewhere as frickin cold as I do - Canadian prairies


Exercising and eating better. YES YOU ARE GONNA BE SORE THE NEXT DAY. It’s worth it.


Stopped watching the news. Life changing…


It helps to literally stop *watching* the news (TV), and get your news from sources you read (local paper) or listen to (NPR). They are more likely to be less sensational and exploitative, especially if you choose carefully, and they are less likely to keep you mindlessly zoned out in front of them.


Basic mindfulness. Realizing that you’re feeling/thinking something is half way to feeling better. Waking Up app or the equivalent is a good place to start


Quitting caffeine. 8 months without and I’m a lot less anxious, and my mental chatter has significantly reduced


1. Therapy. And mentally being in a place to put in the work in therapy. 2. Finch app - it's like neopets for depressed people 3. Learning to ask people who care about me for help. It's a load off. 4. Listening to iweigh (Jameela Jamil's podcast) - it goes over stuff that can be mentally taxing but it's nice to hear other people's considerate thoughts on subjects


>Finch app - it's like neopets for depressed people Neopets is already for depressed people


A psychiatrist. Wish I had gone decades ago.


Running and lifting weights makes you feel so good. Also reading. As in a fiction book, not work emails. Helps clear the mind and triggers your imagination.


Increasing my "fuck it" factor exponentially.


Totally. I read a book called “4000 Weeks” that really hit the point home about not trying to live up to our own impossible standards. Doing so prevents us from even trying, since hitting our standards is unachievable. So being ok with doing the best we are able to do (which isn’t in opposition to wanting to do better) has been a big positive change for me. As a result, when I catch myself getting overwhelmed with the thought of doing something because I want to make sure I get it 100% perfect, I say “fuck it” and do the best I can. Been a major game changer and happiness enabler.


Yep. In a non depressing way, my existence and lifespan is equivalent to a fart in the wind in the grand scheme of things. If I live to 80 years old, that’s great, but in terms of the thousands and millions of years…I’m really a no one. It’s very freeing to understand that even my greatest screw up will be wiped away from everyone’s memory with enough time. Growing up with the pressure to be someone, and realizing that I don’t want to be is super empowering for me. I can focus on my tribe. My wife, kids and handful of people who actually matter to me. I don’t care to make a difference in the grand scheme of things, but I can have an effect on the immediate people around me. So I’ll focus on being the best me for their sake.


Getting outside and walking everyday in the morning and late afternoons. Staying indoors and not getting any natural vitamin D can be very depressing.


My department is underground because of the radiation we use and after 10 years in this field, I started to come half hour early and have my morning coffee outside, walking. It is a game changer.


Stopped smoking weed.


As someone who was a daily (i.e. chronic) smoker for more than 5 years. Stopping my weed consumption has been immense. My anxiety has significantly gone down, but more importantly I have more energy and motivation to do the things I was neglecting (minding my health, cleaning my room, etc). I used to just let life pass me by because it was easy to just sit back and coast while I was high. I realize that this isn't all due to weed and has a lot to do with my own mental health but weed sure wasn't helping. Everyone is different and weed affects them in different ways but if you've been a daily/heavy user, I recommend taking a break to make sure you're not losing yourself. Your health, mind, and tolerance will thank you. [Edit: Frank Ocean - Be Yourself, the mom was right lmao]


On this exact same boat. I hit rock bottom 6 days ago and quit. Went 9 years with rarely taking breaks using it daily for most part. Thought I needed it and regarded it as my medicine, I have ADD. It was fun to do occasionally with friends. Then I started abusing it. Became lonely, lost who I was, anxious / heart would beat fast in stressful situations, chronic depression. Constant brain fog specially in the morning. Couldn’t watch a movie cause my mind would drift off. Same with anything I once loved. All my hobbies and life was replaced with weed (South Park gets it). I feel like the real reason I abused it was because I was trying to feel what it felt like to be happy and have fun on it again. Reminiscing the times it made me feel good with my friends. But it was just me now. All my friends moved onto other things and I was stuck. Realized my conditions and traits make me addicted to cannabis. Just like there are people who get hooked on alcohol easier than others because of it.


Would you mind elaborating? I've noticed that weed is making me very anxious and kind of physically ill and I wondered if it was happening to anyone else.


Cannabis hyperemesis it sounds like. Basically your body wants you to stop, at least for a bit.


I had a medical cannabis card and would tell myself it was helpful but looking back it made me moody. The side effects (munchies, poor sleep quality and lack of concentration) weren’t worth the high anymore. Lastly, I abused it. I would find myself wanting to be high for everything. I guess I just outgrew it. Probably only smoke 2 or 3 times a year now. I’m not against it, but it just didn’t make me the best version of myself.


I had the same thing happen about four years ago after being a daily smoker for a long time. I ended up stopping and never looking back. The anxiety I got from it is gone. I still have anxiety, but now I have one less reason to be anxious haha.


I am still on a break from it. That break started 25 years ago. Nothing against it from a moral/ethical standpoint. I just realized that it was making me nervous and unmotivated. I keep telling myself that I will smoke a bowl when the time is right. Oddly, the right time hasn’t come yet.


Detached myself from my family. I realized what a healthier person I am without their influences. I don't get angry as easily anymore, I don't get stressed as ofren anymore. I always believed I was a failure, I thought the problem was something bigger and complex, apparently I just had to distance myself from my family.


I stopped watching tv, i keep a good work/life balance, i found hobbies i enjoy that are quiet and peaceful. Have a pet if youre able. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, drink herbal tea, when the weather is nice sit on the lawn and do nothing.


Two things actually that began around the same time.. 1) to imagine good things instead of bad, for example - if you're worried that someone is judging you, instead consider they may be noticing how awesome you are, because if you're going to just make stuff up anyway, then why not make it good? 2) trust in my future self, there is no need to agonize or worry about what will happen in the future, because I know that if any of those imagined situations were to actually occur, that I am and will be competent enough to handle them. I spent 40 years worrying about situations that never turned out to be anything; because I am good enough to navigate them when they actually occur - so why worry about whatever the next bad thing will be, when I can just handle it as well


Vitamin D supplement. Repeat after me - Vitamin D Supplement. You need the sun, and the pills - especially if you can't manage to eat healthy.


I removed Facebook from my phone. I still have an account, can sit down and pull up a browser and check it, but I rarely do. My. Life is so much more peaceful.


Thanking people for things they don't do. I learnt this from my professor who would say "Thank you to everyone for participating in today's lecture" even if no one said a single word. Over time, people started participating more and he would change the line to "Thank you to everyone for participating in today's lecture, and especially X, Y.." I use this trick on my colleagues a lot and I have realised it's best to use positive reinforcement to get the best out of yourself and the people around you. Btw, thank you to everyone for upvoting this comment.


Creating boundaries with people, even if it’s friends who have been in my life since birth.


Learning that it’s ok to say “no”. Saying no to plans, to toxic people, to taking on too much responsibility. It’s so good to set boundaries.


Much more sleep, taming alcohol consumption, 30 active minutes of exercise as many days as possible. Even an incline walk will suffice.


TLDR of the comments: -exercise often -try to stay present in the moment -stop consuming toxic media (most media) -medicate if necessary -eat healthy -get enough sleep


Walking. Twenty mins three times a week minimum. At a pace which would be difficult to hold a conversation. Changed my everything. Good luck everyone.


Realization that people aren’t the enemy, you are. Just because a friend is busy does not mean they don’t love you.


Understanding that the biggest obstacle between you and happiness, is you. When you can really learn to accept things out of your control instead of stressing over them, and learn to appreciate what you do have and stop taking so much for granted, you will be happier. The tricky part is that there is a difference between knowing you should do so, and really believing and enacting it. You have to remember and really absorb the next time you're doing something not everyone else can do, from appreciating a nice meal, clean water, a hot shower or bath, being in reasonably good health, medicine, freedom, peace, friends, family, loved ones.. There is usually a lot more to be thankful for than we all really notice. Also, just be a good person. It is it's own reward. Be polite. Hold the door. Use your turn signals, let someone merge over. Let someone else have the last piece of cake. Give a back rub. Give your pet extra snuggles. Tell a good friend you appreciate their companionship. Even if there is no tangible reward, it's good for mental health.


Riding a bicycle


Started a career that is actually a good fit for me and I thrive in


Stopped drinking sodas - which taught me to pay attention to how other foods were affecting my mood. I don't know why, but Dr. Pepper in particular sends me spiraling into an emotional meltdown and certain coffee sweeteners will as well. These are the very obvious ones, but what you put into your body definitely affects your overall wellbeing/mood. ​ Also learned about natural supplements and how they affect hormone balances, which in turn has made a massive impact. ​ And lots of smaller things that I think will get touched on in this thread, but these two were the big things.


Microdosing psilocybin. It's done absolute wonders for my suicidal ideation, cptsd, and mood swings. I never knew I could have weeks, months long stretches of no intrusive thoughts and consistent/predictable moods.


Thyroid medication and a couple months of therapy stopped my suicidal ideation


No (or very limited) news, no social media, daily walks, exercising daily, staying busy with work or house work, and the most important - I HAVE A DOG AND A CAT!!! They’re the most beneficial of all.


Not killing myself over a job.


Ebike. Commute is now an awesome time for myself. The amount of negative energy when driving is insane. The worst way to start the day. The E part allow me to not worry about getting tired or sweaty.




Lmaooo I read this as "eh-bee-kay" and was like wow is that a plant or sum


Yoga class once a week! I go every time, whether I feel like going or not, because I always feel better afterwards 🥰


therapy and antidepressants 😃


1. Saying no. Not being "nice" to people if I have a reason to not be nice or pleasing. 2. My job requires me to complete work by arbitrary deadlines set by clueless admins (I work in a school). My favorite mantra for work is "it'll get done when it gets done". 3. Limiting how much work I bring home and putting the work away by a certain time. No one has confronted me about the fact that I haven't gotten something done fast enough.


No work notifications on my phone, even during the day. I only see messages if I'm at my computer and able to/want to respond.


Cut out toxic people from my life and exercise daily!


Going outside to sit in nature. Listening to the birds and hearing the wind has a way of calming you


Raising chickens! Tons of fun and bonus: eggs!


Not matching my socks


If anyone reading this is on the overnight shift, get out now and never go back.


Therapy and 8 hours of sleep.


Running has proven to be a better tool for managing my ADHD than any medication. I wish I had done it years ago. Edit: It IS frustrating to be down voted for stating something that worked for me that's a different solution. I don't think Meds are bad or whatever, but ADHD has a wide range of management techniques and everyone should have the opportunity to try all of them. I have been on meds! Take em if you want!


I took up running at age 37. Wish I'd done it sooner. The first handful of times were so difficult and exhausting, but it's the best hobby I've ever picked up.


Learning how to play guitar


Meditating for 5-10 minutes a day, every day, for a few months straight. It helps to create mental space to be more aware of your feelings & reactions, take a breath, and let the feeling pass. Try Headspace guided meditations to start. Also quit most social media platforms, and spend some focused time pruning your feed & unfollowing/unfriending people or pages that trigger your negative feelings.


Not letting perfect be the enemy of the good. Don't go running for a few days? It's all good, enjoy some time off. Let some dishes pile up in the sink? Who cares, they'll get done tomorrow. Society applies so much pressure to our day to day lives that somebody else's "norm" is seen as some sort of benchmark we need to meet. Fuck that, do what makes you happy.