I talk beauty & mental health

Monday, 12 June 2017

How To Self Medicate When You Suffer From Depression & Anxiety

Many of you who follow my mental health journey, and my struggle with depression and anxiety, seem to be under the impression that I am medicated. Let me break some news for you here: I am not. I am not on antidepressants and I don't take any medicine for my anxiety. While there is no shame in being medicated for a mental illness this is not a topic that has ever been addressed for me even though I am in treatment, and I have chosen to be okay with it, for now. I do however self medicate, every day, and here's how.

- By choosing to go to therapy

I used to think that it was a matter of simply knowing that you suffer from depression or anxiety, but by going to therapy I've learned that labels don't actually matter that much: all of the feelings that lay underneath all that suffering do, and they need to be dealt with.

- By choosing to surround myself with good people

Distancing yourself from people who bring you down is key to recovery. There is no point in hanging out/being/staying with people who suck the life out of you (even if they are your own parents). You are more important than how someone else feels about you. You have to live with yourself for the rest of your life, so choose for you and only you. Surround yourself with people that not only love you but respect you and your needs. I know the process of cutting people off can come paired up with lots of feelings of guilt, and you know what? That's completely normal, you will feel guilty, and you know why? Because you're not used to treating yourself with so much care and kindness.

- By choosing for a healthy eating pattern

A healthy eating pattern is not the end-all be-all of being mentally healthy but it can make a huge difference if you're used to feeding yourself junk all the time. I've found that eating less red meat and choosing for black beans, chick peas and broccoli makes an enormous difference. Sounds boring I know, but try adding pasta, some spices, maybe even some ricotta and voilà! Deliciousness is served.

- By taking a Vitamine C supplement

Ever since I quit taking birth control (again) I have the worst PMS in the entire world so I've chosen to take a Vitamine C supplement when my hormones go completely haywire (which usually is the week before my period starts). I track my cycle with the 'Clue' app to make sure I catch it on time because waking up one day after another feeling miserable and not knowing why is something I want to avoid as much as possible. Vitamines C really helps to bring my mood to a balance when it's that time of the month. It's very inexpensive, at my pharmacy they don't ask more than €5 for 20 tablets, in Belgium it is considered medicine though so definitely ask your pharmacist how to use it.

- By taking myself and my feelings seriously

I know I talk a lot in a joking manner (especially in my youtube videos) but having to deal with depression and anxiety is not funny so, instead of laughing things off, I try to take a step back and really reflect about my feelings and also take other people's feelings seriously when they talk about their struggles. It's easy to laugh everything off but it's not healthy.

- By being creative with my blog and Youtube channel

Even though blogging and youtubing doesn't always go as smoothly, I consider it a part of my healing process. I also wouldn't really know how to fill in my days if I wouldn't blog. It is something that keeps me going, something that makes me happy and that is important to me.

- By choosing for a more minimalist lifestyle

I used to hoard absolutely everything! A couple of months ago I still had clothes in my closet from when I was a teenager. I decided to throw everything I wasn't wearing, using or stuff I just had completely forgotten about. Clothes, shoes, memorabilia, makeup, furniture, etc. I still do own a lot of stuff but my home is so much more empty already, and clean and light. It's such a liberating and positive feeling.

- By sharing my pain and journey with all of you

Mental illness is something that isn't visible like physical illnesses are, and that's why it is so difficult for others to understand what it entails to suffer from a mental illness. That's why I try to show the good, the bad, the ugly and be as honest as possible about my battle with depression and anxiety. I share most of my life on Snapchat, and then here on my blog in the form or personal posts and therapy updates.

How do you self medicate? :)

Want to know what I do with my life besides blogging? Take a look on my Youtube, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat all at joliennathalie! I daily vlog, host self care parties, tour my house, cook, declutter, unbox PR packages and show exclusive behind the scenes footage! You're welcome ;)

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