Stress, anxiety, depression… are things people handle in a variety of ways. One major way is eating, and by eating I mean dipping strawberry Pop Tarts into marinara followed by chocolate sauce chasers. Rarely have these emotions driven someone to stuff a crown of broccoli in their face. Over the past weeks I’ve seen all three emotions rear their ugly heads and it made me question for a moment, is what I’m doing worth it? The answer is yes.
Luckily nothing life threatening or family related is involved, so the variety of emotions I’m dealing with are fairly low in terms of severity, more like daily work/life related struggles. That being said they are things that in the past would make me deep fry a baby Ruth in tempura batter, wrap it in a Twinkie bun and stab my mouth. This time I’ve looked at it differently and decided to deal with these matters positively.
First off I decided peering into a refrigerator in times of crisis held nothing but failure, poor results and feeling awful. I thought about reaching for a bag of carrots or pepper slices and although they’re healthy options, they weren’t problem solvers. The problem was thinking I could deal with emotion with my mouth instead of my mind and body. I reasoned that to get my mind and body involved I had to do two things, think positively…and exercise. “Really Pav, Think Positively?! “ I know two months ago I would have punched myself in the face for saying that but dammit, it’s good advice.
Imagination is a funny thing; well my imagination is a funny thing. It has the ability to react to negativity in a negative manner by providing scenarios which result in dragging me down a rabbit hole and filling the opening with concrete. This time I used my brain and reason, they came up with some not so “end of the world” scenarios. I’m still waiting on a few outcomes but I’ve surrounded myself with enough positive people to make the wait/weight bearable. Even if the worst happens, it’s still better than where my imagination would take me.
Exercise, I know the word has the ability to trigger these emotions, but if you think about it sensibly it also has the ability to relieve them. When you exercise your body releases endorphins, the brain’s “happy pills.” It also releases endorphins during vigorous sex…just saying. It’s meditation in motion so whether playing tennis or, eh hem….something else; I’m taking my mind off day to day issues. Regular exercise improves sleep and self confidence which will help alleviate stress, anxiety and mild depression. In the end my problems may not disappear, but my mind and body will be better able to deal with the outcomes.