Staying well

Support each other to stay well, from mindfulness, sleep, diet and exercise to reducing drug and alcohol use and coping with difficult emotions.

FAQ

Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.

Pinned discussions

Just Sara A Bouquet for Pearls - share your appreciation for other members
  • replies: 715

Every now and then, members share a beautiful Pearl of Wisdom. How often do you think to yourself; "OMG that's great! I wish everyone could see this." Presenting someone with a bunch of flowers is a generous way of acknowledging their insightful word... View more

Every now and then, members share a beautiful Pearl of Wisdom. How often do you think to yourself; "OMG that's great! I wish everyone could see this." Presenting someone with a bunch of flowers is a generous way of acknowledging their insightful words. I hope this thread stays active through members giving out praise regularly to people they feel deserving, and therefore keep generosity of spirit alive within the pages of BeyondBlue Forum. My bunch of Red Roses (my choice) goes to Wishful for the following sentence; 'Personally, I see no reason to be praised in me, but I'm learning that seeing through the eyes of others can be more accurate!!' I so hear you Wishful. Just beautiful... Try to keep your leading comments short to focus on 'their' words. Choose specific flowers (or a gift if you like) to present to them. Sign off respectfully and sincerely. I hope this takes off... Spreading the love...Sara

All discussions

Guest_2350 Helpful apps
  • replies: 3

Hello All, in this new era of mobile phones, are there any great apps that you know and use when you get sad, have an anxiety attack, pick yourself up, or you just want to monitor your daily progress / journal? I travel heaps and it is good to have s... View more

Hello All, in this new era of mobile phones, are there any great apps that you know and use when you get sad, have an anxiety attack, pick yourself up, or you just want to monitor your daily progress / journal? I travel heaps and it is good to have something that is always with me. I have a couple of meditation apps that I use: "isleep Easy" which has "falling asleep" and "waking during the night" meditations. There is another one called "At Ease" that I am trying to use for meditation when anxiety hits (have not used it much yet).There is also a "walking meditation" from the same programmer. I also use "Smiling mind" but more when I am having a good day - I like eating my chocolate with the eating meditation, but I struggle with any of the feelings, thoughts or emotions meditations. I have made a movie with photos of people I love and music that is soothing - have not tried that yet - to help me in a dark hour (I keep forgetting that i have it). I also have a photo food journal to remind me to prepare nice and healthy meals - this really motivates me to eat. On youtube I play motivational videos, some of my favourites used to be "Unbroken" and "Why do we fall" - though I have to say, that this is less relevant for my current journey. I loved these when I was working on fitness goals, but I get strength out of them for my current journey as well. Would be great to hear about your apps. Cheers, Yggy

triptych Music helps
  • replies: 11

Firstly, hello, and thank-you to all of the moderators and contributors on this forum. I've recently found this place and have trawled through quite a few threads so far... It's great to have a resource where we don't need to feel so alone. Think I m... View more

Firstly, hello, and thank-you to all of the moderators and contributors on this forum. I've recently found this place and have trawled through quite a few threads so far... It's great to have a resource where we don't need to feel so alone. Think I may stick around for a while. I've been dealing with various issues on my own for years, and am only just learning that it's OK to talk about them. With that said, Here goes with my first post... I've had varying degrees of depression and anxiety over the years, but recently had my first experience of a "proper" panic attack and it sent me into a bit of a tailspin. As the storm clouds cleared (they always do) and I once more tried to collect my strength, I've relearned something I knew instinctively when I was a teenager - Music helps. I've always been into music, and found myself surprised revisiting some albums that I haven't listened to in years.. whether it be an uplifting solo, a beat that gets you going or some inspiring lyrics, There's been a mountain of help lined up on the shelves of the lounge room wall all along. I'm starting to build up an arsenal of go-to tracks, for when I need that kick inside. Right now, I am being incredibly inspired by the maturity and sensitivity of the words of Mike Skinner (The Streets). When I last listened to his albums I heard it as jokey, laddish music about partying and such. Coming back to it with open ears in a time of need, I now hear his incredible maturity and emotional sensitivity in so many of his lyrics, He's been there, and has the talent to express in words what so few of us men are unable to. I'm hoping to find more gems like this, but it's a bit like a needle in the haystack. So I am putting it out there... Whether it be finding the strength to get out of bed, grieving a lost relationship, or just struggling to make sense of it all, What music helps you when you need a little mental leg-up? I'll start, The Streets - On The Edge Of A Cliff

Guest_2350 Help - tips for travelling overseas
  • replies: 4

Good morning, I am in my final preparation for a 4 week trip to Europe and I am getting increasingly worried about losing my support network here, not seeing my GP and psych and losing my daily routine - I struggle when I lose my daily routine and ev... View more

Good morning, I am in my final preparation for a 4 week trip to Europe and I am getting increasingly worried about losing my support network here, not seeing my GP and psych and losing my daily routine - I struggle when I lose my daily routine and everyday will be different and challenging for me when away. I have depression and C-PTSD and I will actually face a few trigger places when abroad, which freaks me out as well. It is a trip of a life time and actually something to look forward to and I would like to do as much as I can to make it a pleasant exprience for myself and everyone around me. I am talking to the psych and GP but feel like time is running out... What has helped you to prepare & get through it with a smile? Thanks, Yggy

white knight REJECTION - it's hard to swallow
  • replies: 11

Mental illness often brings with it excess sensitivity among many other quirky characteristics. Quirky because we aren't talking about common sensitivity, we are talking about being really easy to upset and indeed remain upset for a long period of ti... View more

Mental illness often brings with it excess sensitivity among many other quirky characteristics. Quirky because we aren't talking about common sensitivity, we are talking about being really easy to upset and indeed remain upset for a long period of time. Hence we react heavily to bullying, embarrassing moments, financial pressures etc. We worry and worry isn't good. What about rejection? I suspect my mother to have BPD in the extreme and she's left a train wreck where ever she has been within both sides of my family. Every time my sister or I have had a falling out with her we also have lost other relatives or family friends. But there was one auntie that I've lost and its hard to swallow. As a boy she was the dairy farmers wife with 7 kids, my cousins and we'd cart hay and go rabbiting. She was the warmth that filled her home. She was the stable older female in my life that filled the hole when my mother would be on her crusades against others or me depending on her mood. See, the problem with excess BPD people when they don't get treatment (so don't take it personally) is that some gather support from other family members and before you know it you've got many of these that no longer talk to you no matter how hard you try. But this auntie (by marriage) I didn't expect to reject me. I'm 60yo she is 82yo. I've written 3 letters in the last 4 years mentioning what a wonderful auntie she was when I was young and how I understand her hardship over many years.So what is the best action for me now? Well what I've done is write many times letters on the computer then erased them. It helps. The other thing is to imagine in your mind that these people that reject you have a limited understanding of what its like to live a life in your shoes. How could this auntie possibly understand what its like to be a child of a very excessive train wreck of a mother that has periodically abused you and not given you a stable childhood? Letter writing is effective. Today I wrote my auntie 4 letters, none of them will be sent. My first letter had anger in it. Comments like "I've never got between you and your children when you've argued so why are you taking sides in this family rift?" Comments of justifying my situation or more like not justifying her stance. The last letter was much shorter and I wished her well, that she has choices in life and I do also. I wished her good health. And that I loved her regardless. Then erased that to. Now I'm at peace.

Pontius Little List of Goals
  • replies: 2

Hello, I have found that writing a list of goals (they don't have to be big things, just small things that you want to achieve) can be really helpful. Then you keep that list where you can get it if you want to and look at it so you can see all the t... View more

Hello, I have found that writing a list of goals (they don't have to be big things, just small things that you want to achieve) can be really helpful. Then you keep that list where you can get it if you want to and look at it so you can see all the things you want to achieve in life. You don't have to stick it on the fridge where everyone can see you goals, you can keep it somewhere and work through it quietly and privately. I just find this useful because then you can see what you want to achieve and it has made me think twice about quitting. This has been useful for me (as well as keeping a Gratitude Diary where you write what you are grateful for each day). I hope it might be useful for you too. Pontius‚Äč

liwymi Finding an accountability partner/buddy
  • replies: 4

Hello, So I've been struggling with depression for a few months now, and even though I have family and friends around me, and I'm getting professional support, I feel like I need something extra. I really want to work on improving my daily habits and... View more

Hello, So I've been struggling with depression for a few months now, and even though I have family and friends around me, and I'm getting professional support, I feel like I need something extra. I really want to work on improving my daily habits and doing things that make me feel better, like sleeping on time, eating well, exercising and being social. I was thinking some sort of accountability partner or buddy relationship might help - the sort where I can organise regular check-ins to discuss goals, progress with goals and generally someone to keep accountable to. I'm hoping it'd be someone who would also want an accountability partner too so the relationship is mutually beneficial. So I was just wondering whether anyone hear has tried this and how it went. Did/Does it help? Any pitfalls? Also wondering how I might be able to go about finding such a relationship. My family and friends are quite busy so I'm not sure they'd be able to meet up as regularly as I'd like. That's why I'm hoping to find someone who also needs support, so we'll be there for each other. Any personal experience stories or suggestions are appreciated! Thanks!

Doolhof So, how was your day?
  • replies: 144

I've had a busy kind of day that went very well. I have managed to work, go for a swim, had lunch in a park, enjoyed a coffee and biscuits with a client and looked at the second hand tent we have just bought ourselves. I went down to the chook house ... View more

I've had a busy kind of day that went very well. I have managed to work, go for a swim, had lunch in a park, enjoyed a coffee and biscuits with a client and looked at the second hand tent we have just bought ourselves. I went down to the chook house to check on my "ladies" and had a chat with them while they clucked away waiting for me to feed them. I also had a look to see where we can set the tent up in the garden this weekend to try it out. I'm already thinking of places nearby where we can go camping. I will also ask my sister and nieces if they would like to join me sometime. Please feel free to contribute and share how you have spent your day. Cheers for now from Mrs. Dools

Little_Bear A 'newbie's' talk on depression and how I've overcome it (I think)!
  • replies: 3

Hi everyone, I'm 47, single, living on my own, have lots of great friends, good family, stable job ... yet have still suffered from depression over the years. I used to blame it on being single (when I was single), but then I had an 8 year relationsh... View more

Hi everyone, I'm 47, single, living on my own, have lots of great friends, good family, stable job ... yet have still suffered from depression over the years. I used to blame it on being single (when I was single), but then I had an 8 year relationship and realised I still used to get depressed so there was that theory up in smoke! What I used to find difficult was the fact that on the surface I actually had nothing to be depressed about. I've always had a great circle of friends and support, I've never had financial problems or health problems, my childhood was uneventful. Yet I'd still get these bouts of depression that would last months and months. Looking back, I think its kinda worse when there is nothing outwardly wrong because then, not only are you depressed, you also feel guilty that you are depressed! I remember seeing a psychologist once who told me I was clinically depressed and I said to her, 'how do you know?' I said, how do you know I'm just not very lazy? (this because I had no interest in doing anything). And she said to me, because that's a classic question from someone who is clinically depressed! Anyway right now I'm fine, and have been for the last couple of years. But I still take a low dosage of anti deps every morning. I've no idea if this is what is keeping me well or not, but I'm kinda scared to get off it unless I do go back down that horrible path. And as I know there is nothing wrong with taking one pill a day (luckily I've never had any side effects), then why not take it. I am now a volunteer at Lifeline so I'm on the phones one night a week trying to help others. If there is one thing that has come out of this, it's an aboundness (is that a word?) of gratefulness for what I have. Sometimes I feel so sorry for the people on the other end of the line and I think to myself 'how, how is it possible you got to this position where you have absolutely no-one and nowhere to turn? I am so glad I can help these people, even for just half an hour. I'd love to be able to talk to the community about depression and to stop this stupid stigma about it and to tell people you can get better...that it doesn't have to be fatal or ongoing forever. If anyone has any leads or knows how I can do this, please feel free to tell me. Thanks to my current job, I have finally mastered the art of public speaking without freaking out first so I'm not afraid to get up and talk to people about this. Cheers

TorontoUser Share your recovery story here
  • replies: 10

Disclaimer: this is my recollection, and we are all different. I'm slim, fairly athletic, eat very healthy, exercise moderately regularly, am an engineer, am male, and 40-ish years old. I am writing this primarily for the benefit of those suffering a... View more

Disclaimer: this is my recollection, and we are all different. I'm slim, fairly athletic, eat very healthy, exercise moderately regularly, am an engineer, am male, and 40-ish years old. I am writing this primarily for the benefit of those suffering and perhaps struggling to find hope. I recently really struggled with hope, not finding many success stories on "The Internet", then realised my hypocrisy, in that I had a six-year-long "glowing" recovery story in my back pocket that I never bothered sharing once I had recovered. I notice a lot of people start posts when they just start on medication, then disappear. Presumably a large % of these people did what I did: as soon as they felt better, they turned their back on anything depressing, and returned to living. I suffered a serious episode of depression seven years ago, and probably with the help of medication, time, and interpersonal psychotherapy with a therapist, recovered and functioned for a good six years before another serious episode. I'll label the episodes A and B. The symptoms of both depressions were text-book clinical: o impaired ability to think (80% impaired) o insomnia o social isolation and loss of pleasure/interest in my passions o hopelessness Lifestyle leading to A (seven years ago): o working 40-70 hours per week in stressful roles (in a technical field) where I was pushing my brain to learn new material, for about six months o trying to support/solve/resolve a relationship that ultimately could not work, for about a year Lifestyle leading to B: (now) o working 40 hours per week (in a technical field) but studying another 40 hours per week, again driving my brain almost non-stop, for about a year o trying to support/solve/resolve a relationship that ultimately could not work, for about a year I must admit that ALL through the above I had and still have dysthymia and fluctuating mood, but not debilitating (in my case, not physical, but mental: not being able to think or handle stress) clinical depression, and my recollection is that the mood stabiliser in small doses actually helped (dissolved) some of my dysthymia (made everything a bit easier). Truly. Episode A: ---------- I was started on a therapeutic dose of anti-depressant and mood-stabiliser for sleep. The latter immediately gave me sleep I was missing for weeks and weeks. I recovered slowly but steadily. I returned to work in a month, in limited functionality. I got into a new sport - swimming - and found a therapist I really identified with. I remember two or three months later at times I felt top of the world. I had my wits back, and felt level enough to do anything. I actually felt *advantaged*, as if I was a drug cheat. To be a purist, I slowly tapered-down the doses of both drugs. Six months later I was on a maintenance dose of the anti-depressant and mood-stabiliser. I later tapered the anti-depressant to zero and only took the mood-stabiliser at a small dose for sleep as needed. I gained a touch of weight while taking the medications, but I quickly lost it all and returned to my previous weight. The psychotherapy exercised my brain and the therapist very skilfully guided me to get in touch with my emotions, to have a better feel of myself and the emotional world around me, and there were moments where I was overcome with emotion so much so I could not speak. Living more of an emotional life (i.e. based on love) became more important to me. In the West we spend most of our lives denying our emotions. The following year I went travelling for three months on my own (armed with the mood-stabiliser, which seemed to help my depression when I felt a bit down, worked full time in my old challenging profession, worked in another city (commuting home on weekends by plane), and then quit work and moved cities to return to school to complete a post-graduate engineering degree in a field of my dreams. I was nearly 40 years of age, and I did all this with almost no help from anyone else. I had my wits, and a bucket-load of energy. Episode B: ---------- Recent, and I re-started on the same doses of the same medications. I tried two anti-depressants, prior, this episode, but I did not feel well on them. Two weeks later at the end of a very satisfying family lunch I suddenly just felt good. Exactly as advertised by anti-depressant literature, my spontaneous (gut) interest in things and zest for life and the unknown returned, life was just automatically easier, my sleep was corrected, and I was relatively happy. It is extremely difficult to articulate the state. Maybe that's why descriptions of what anti-depressants actually can do are hard to find. Honestly, I was surprised. IMO at the very least the medications restored my sleep, and at the most they gave my brain what it needed to heal, and I think heal is an appropriate word because when I was depressed, I just couldn't pick up anything complicated with my mind and think about it/work on it. I think the medications improved my state of being. My side-effects to both medications have reduced to almost zero: a slight sexual effect, a slight weight gain (3 lbs), I sometimes sweat (full-body) at night, and I have more appetite for tasty things like bakery pastries. Otherwise, I am unchanged. Amazing. This after three weeks of being on the certain combination of medication. I hastily decided my brain was all-healed and began tapering the mood stabiliser down to 3/4 of the therapeutic dose, and in the following days my mood sank. I then re-tapered the up again (yesterday) and immediately feel better. I'll stay on this dose for a while before thinking about tapering. I'll post an update when I have something more to share.

Denv12 My Daily Health Routine.
  • replies: 4

I have tried various things to deal with my health problems. I spent a lot of money. What I found interesting was Kinesiology (pronounced kin-easy-oll-oh-gee) treatments.I found a great practitioner who did several treatments. I then looked around to... View more

I have tried various things to deal with my health problems. I spent a lot of money. What I found interesting was Kinesiology (pronounced kin-easy-oll-oh-gee) treatments.I found a great practitioner who did several treatments. I then looked around to buy a book on Acupressure. The book is called: "Acupressure for emotional healing." By Michael Reed,Gach,Phd. There are a lot of ailments in the book such as anxiety,depression,etc so. I did found websites catering for pressure points/diagrams/ailments too. Earlier this year I was reading a book on a technique I heard about, called "Emotional Freedom Technique".(EFT). I kept looking and found another technique called: "Faster E.F.T." (It is Faster Emotionally Focused Transformations.) I like the idea of it so I tried to find out more about it,joined the forum catering for it,found demos,diagrams,step by step instructions,etc and started using it. As far as I know there is one book that I am aware of called: "From stress to success". By Kim J Jewell. "Faster E.F.T." I use it everyday at home.It has improved my overall wellbeing and I have got rid of many emotional issues. I do this every day.I record my issues that I do in a journal. I intend to keep doing it because I feel better for it.