We all have those days when we just 'aren't feelin' it'. It is amazing how much our mind and mood control everything in our world. They can affect our perspective, outlook, confidence and even our physical health. What a sorry state we are in when we feel like our mind is broken. It can feel absolutely impossible to overcome or change anything. So, how can you mend your mind?
While we in no way can come close to covering all the things that can impact your mind and mood, we would like to at least provide some hope and tools for mending your most important asset - your mind. First, let's cover some of the broad categories of issues that may point to a need for some 'mending'.
Traditionally, issues with the mind and mood center on diagnoses such as depression, anxiety, bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia, etc. and then on to dementia, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. However, another category of issues that may be related to the mind are chronic physical issues such as pain (fibromyalgia), fatigue, autoimmune conditions, etc. This isn't to say that our physical ailments are all 'in our heads', but that there is often a mind or emotional component contributing to them. This is why we find the Neuro Emotional Technique (NET) so helpful for people. Another category of mind-related issues includes conditions like brain fog, inability to focus, lack of motivation, feeling 'stuck', not being able to reach our goals and more serious addictions.
While these issues are very broad and diverse, the root causes of why our minds seem to be broken in all these different ways can be very similar. Many of these dysfunctions can be caused by inflammation (which we covered previously) and neurotransmitter imbalances. There are all kinds of tests that can be done to find out the specifics of your brain, but we suggest starting with the basics. We recommend everyone focus on what Kimberley calls the D.R.E.S.S. protocol. This stands for Diet, Rest, Exercise, Stress Reduction and Supplementation when needed.
Diet goes beyond just eating 'healthy'. You may have hidden food sensitivities causing inflammation throughout the body. In addition, you may NOT be eating correctly for your metabolic type. These issues can be identified through some simple testing. However, when testing isn't in the budget, we suggest at least trying to remove the most likely inflammatory foods - gluten/grains, dairy, nuts, processed foods, sugar, soy and corn. Also, don't forget hydration with pure clean water - at least 1/2 oz. per pound of body weight per day.
Rest means getting the best sleep possible. Shoot for at least 8 hours of slumber and going to bed as early as possible. The hours of sleep before midnight are much more beneficial than the hours of sleep after midnight (I see my mother smiling and nodding).
Exercise can be any kind of movement that isn't 'over doing it'. In Colorado, we find that many people on a healing journey are exercising too much and using up the resources their bodies need to heal most efficiently and effectively.
Stress reduction is very broad and can include everything from taking down time and breathing exercises to finding hidden stressors in the body such as stealth infections or parasites.
Supplementation can be very helpful in making up nutritional deficiencies and providing therapeutic amounts of various nutrients. In addition, herbal and homeopathic supplements can provide 'energetic' information to help balance the body. We have many supplements available related to mind and mood.
While this D.R.E.S.S. protocol is simple, we know it isn't always easy to do on your own. We would be glad to help you create a plan to address these key areas or to do some testing. These basic diet and lifestyle changes can go a long way in helping to mend your mind. However, we are also provide even more support for mind and mood with psychotherapy services.
If you have some extra time on your hands, here are some other resources we recommend:
A Mind of Your Own by Dr. Kelly Brogan. This book focuses on the effects of SSRIs and how to reduce or eliminate their use. It is especially focused on women and how they can heal their minds and bodies.
Switch On Your Brain by Dr. Caroline Leaf. Dr. Leaf also has tons of great YouTube content if you would rather listen or watch than read.
The Body Keeps the Score by Dr. Bessel Van Der Kolk. This book is especially geared to those dealing with past traumas.
There are just so many great resources out there. Please don't stay 'stuck' if you are dealing with mental health and mood issues. We would love to partner with you on making progress toward mending your mind!