No one lives perfectly in their recovery, and we all experience setbacks in the form of failures or disappointments. Occasionally, you may allow one of these setbacks to dwell in your mind causing you to fall into a pit of depression or anxiety. This is a difficult situation to find yourself in, as once we have allowed a negative mindset to take hold it quickly infects other areas of our life, often interrupting our healthy routines and activities as well feel unmotivated and lacking in energy to participate. If you are stuck in an emotional rut, what can you do to get out of this negative mindset and back on track in your routine?
Depression and anxiety are tricky adversaries, as they leave us feeling unmotivated and lacking energy to take action and combat these negative feelings in our minds. You awaken each morning with your brain telling you there is no way you can accomplish more than the bare minimum, and even that is pushing the limits of your energy levels. As with anything else in life, your best bet is to take small steps towards your usual routine. Wake up 15 minutes earlier each day until you are back to your normal sleep/wake cycle. Once you have restored your sleep routine, start incorporating parts of your exercise regimen back into your daily schedule. Exercise is a great way to combat anxiety and depression as it reduces cortisol and promotes the release of endorphins.
Another great way to get back to a positive mindset and out of a depressive funk is by talking about your thoughts and feelings, both with your sober supports and with your higher power. It is remarkable how hearing the reasons behind our anxiety and depression out loud as we share them with another person can quickly put them into perspective, enabling us to see things in a more optimistic and positive light. Those with whom you are sharing these feelings will reinforce this positivity, reminding you of all the good things you have in your life for which you should be grateful. In communicating with your higher power, you should seek to give over these negative thoughts and feelings to Him so he may remove them from your mind, asking in prayer for his help and guidance to restore your serenity and give you the strength to get back to your healthy routine. A God of your understanding has the power to eliminate any anxiety and depression you are experiencing, all we must do is ask for his help and trust in his will for our lives.
Everyone experiences negative emotions in life, sobriety does not eliminate these as we continue to encounter obstacles and setbacks which can cause us to become depressed or anxious. The key is to not allow these emotions to linger in our minds, and if we do, to take steps to remove them and get back to a positive frame of mind. The longer you allow yourself to dwell in the negative, the harder it becomes to get back to positive, so start taking small steps in your daily life to get back on track in your routine. Restoring your sleep schedule and exercise regimen should be your first focus, as these promote a healthy mindset and help alleviate stress. Wake each morning and ask your higher power for the strength to be better today than you were yesterday, and in no time at all you will be back to your healthy routine and serene state of mind!