As I mentioned in Taking Charge of an Illness (Part 1), since I know that my Fall depression usually starts in October, I've taken a number of steps to stave it off, and/or to make it more palatable if it does hit. The following portion of the list are the activities I've been doing for months, and a few new ones as well.
6. Exercise. I've written before that regular aerobic exercise has been proven more effective than antidepressant medication. And while I haven't instituted an aerobic program, I have been walking my dog Jack twice every day since we adopted him a few months ago. I also garden at least three times a week.
But, starting today I'm adding an aerobic component, which is jump roping (there are also other exercises on this link). It's easy to do and I'll let you know more about it after I buy my jump rope this afternoon and do further research. Actually I think tap dancing would be way more fun, but we all need to be realistic about what we think we might actually stick with.
7. Spending Time with Friends. Actually, in this case, it was spending time with "old" friends, and making new friends (whom I've now known from three to six months), and whom I've told about my possible depressive episodes and know they are willing to spend time with me, whether I'm my usual upbeat self or not.
8. Developing hobbies I can do alone. Both gardening and digital photography fit into this category. I've now been gardening since April, and I can plant, prune, and garden with little instruction (if need be). I've also taken three digital photo classes since last April. My current one runs through November, but I think that's fine. I've also been teaching myself Photo Elements, and it's a great solitary activity, and I have lots of photos to work on.
(to be continued)