The nature reserve consists of woods, meadows and beautiful wildlife. There are web cams and all sorts of lovely information on the web site, however I'm lucky enough to be able to walk there very quickly and take in the majesty of all it's glorious nature first hand.
Today I played at being a wildlife photographer as it eases my troubles, calms my mind and makes me focus on something other than the rubbish banging about in the empty cavity that is my brain!
If you suffer with depression you have to identify your observant self and tap into what he or she is telling you. Some people like to run, some paint, some make music...basically you find something that will focus your mind and give you pleasure and a sense of self worth.
There are several things I've identified recently that help my depression.
Walking is one but it can be hindered by my Fibromyalgia and how swollen my joints are and how painful.
Taking photographs is another, and of course my dogs.
Woodlands with their dappled sunlight and calming rustling leaves. The shady glens and pockets of peace hidden away from everyone. Its so tranquil to stand still and let your senses be assaulted by the sounds, smells and sights.
Then there is water in its many guises, paddling pool to babbling brook to shimmering sea...they all float my boat.
The best one probably for me is writing, pour your heart out to the public, or to one person. It matters not but talking about mental health is paramount. Please do not suffer in silence, it makes things worse and like a piece of metal rotting with rust you get further and further away from being healthy. Seek help early do not let it fester...
It's okay not to be okay
So what do you favour? What makes you smile, what swells your heart and lightens your burdens?
Find the sensible observer within yourself, listen to them, or tune in if necessary or if you've muted them in the past please do unmute them for goodness sake. Your observant self could be your salvation, offer you insights into your own psyche. Be kind to yourself and allow yourself the time to indulge your emotions and strengthen your mental health.
Self compassion is something I'm learning about but have a look at the works of Dr Kirsten Neff, there's a link below. She even has an audio book with beautifully narrated meditations and sessions to listen to that make the world of difference. Trust me have a look. (Ignore the demons crowing about soft and fluffy crap being for social workers not cops)
My therapist said you have to cultivate emotional resilience and that's why I'm trying to use the things I've mentioned above. You need to find what floats your boat?
To be mentally healthy we need to have self esteem and if you're compassionate to yourself and 'feed' your mind the things it loves you can become stronger.
So my fellow sufferers try and be optimistic, use your courage, of which you'll have oodles if you're still plodding through life with that damned black dog. Try and find the hope you need for the future, use your observing self, look at yourself from the third person perspective. Find something that means something to you and not only will you help yourself physically but you'll bolster your mental health.
So putting my money, or photographs where my mouth is...
Here follows my Wildlife Gallery from 22/6/17!!!