books and motivational presentations.
And recently I’ve begun to see a pattern with daily hydration, nutrition and psychological issues as my causes and cures for symptoms of clinical depression. It feels like light is slowly revealing why I've been riding a roller coaster for over 15 years. So if you or someone you know is dealing with depression and seeking alternative solutions then this post and my story is for you.
On a recent hot, humid day I experienced sudden symptoms of depression and later did a meditation for what to do next to feel better. I then received a strong insight to research the keywords “water depression” and found online articles and websites like www.watercures.org that said increasing water intake daily was a surprisingly simple and effective method for lowering symptoms. It makes sense too since 75-80% of our brain is water and our body is 50-60%. And since each person is recommended to drink eight 8-ounce glasses (2 litres or half a gallon) per day I then realized I was unintentionally dehydrated. I wasn’t drinking half of that!
I immediately went out and bought a new water bottle with measurements on the side and have been drinking 2 litres per day and am feeling better. I don’t even mind that I have to go to the washroom more because my mental health is the priority! Learn more: Water & Depression
The brain/gut connection I’ve been researching and documenting on this movie/wellness blog (see tip#880 & tip#945) and on my Instagram channel continues to reveal long-term nutritional deficiency as causing depression symptoms such as loss of focus, concentration, hopelessness and extreme heaviness in my arms and legs. This summer I was relaxed about my gut health diet inspired by Dr. David Perlmutter and Dr. Josh Ax’s research and ate less vegetables and had more white flour based foods.
Recently I ordered a freshly made Belgium waffle and after my first bite my body was screaming not to eat it. Not wanting to waste it I ate half and finished the rest the morning after. That’s when I began to feel a loss of concentration and catatonic very much like Robert De Niro’s character Leonard in the 1990 film Awakenings. The condition I experience is actually called psychomotor retardation.
Thankfully, I was cognizant I was slipping into darkness and my gut was telling me (no pun intended!) the lack of green vegetables and the waffle were the cause. Since I am a visual learner I found inspiration on Instagram and found delicious photos of meals using the hashtag #eatmorevegetables that I could prepare. The next day I focused on buying, cooking and eating a tasty vegetable stir fry and later roasted vegetables and salads. Recommended amounts are 3 cups of vegetables and 2 cups fruits. I began to feel much better. For me it feels like inflammation is what happens in my brain and body so the silver lining is discovering how fun healing can be with uplifting foods!
I continue to benefit from the two Cognitive Behavioural Therapy programs (CBT) I took last year (see tip#863 & tip#910). With recent relationship issues that triggered much anxiety I feel blessed that the silver lining is revealing life-long repressed/suppressed anger feeding the inflammation of my mental health challenges. Dealing with trapped emotions is what I've already been exploring in order to remove chronic blocks in life (see tip#912). This is an area I’m currently researching for therapeutic options and resources to heal. One powerful resource that flooded me with insights was Netflix’s documentary Tony Robbins: I Am Not Your Guru. I’ll be featuring this film in an upcoming blog post. See: movie trailer
See tip#899: Three other factors for managing depression
If you resonate with any of these solutions then please try them out for yourself. I am just documenting what methods work for me and feel it is my calling to share my journey to help others. It is equal to my passion for writing about films that teach me about myself and that help me persevere and stay resilient during life’s challenges. There is so much to learn from movies and documentaries especially ones about real people who discovered the silver lining of their own dark clouds.
Life, Animated (2016)
The documentary, Life, Animated, is about how classic animated Disney films helped a young autistic man, Owen Suskind develop reading, writing and communication skills. This heartfelt, inspiring story shows the empowering and healing aspects of films while shedding light on what living with autism is like. See: movie trailer
There are two areas of inspiration in this film, one is Owen’s resilience and resourceful use of cinema as a learning tool and second is the love and support of his parents and brother. When Owen suddenly showed his mental challenges at age 3 and solutions seemed hopeless his family never gave up on him. And through animated classics like The Lion King, The Jungle Book, Aladdin, The Little Mermaid and more, Owen found the strength and means to persevere and learn how to grow into a young man and live a fulfilling life.
This documentary also touched my heart because it mirrors my life path of how movies saved me in dark times and taught me how to take personal leadership in my life, career and mental health. I’ve also had a vision that my life story would one day be made into a movie so it could inspire others. That would be the ultimate silver lining of the roller coaster ride of my life experiences!
Activating your indestructible optimism is about first believing there is a silver lining in the challenges you face. You’ve got to envision it even if you can’t see any hope or a solution in front of you. Real-life stories and movie heroes can help you see the invisible. Be motivated today to be the hero in your own life story and see through the dark cloud you are in!
Tip#67: Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining, Part 1 - 4 Movie Tips
Tip#621: Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining, Part 2 - Silver Linings Playbook
Tip#902: Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining, Part 3 - Mental Health - K-PAX
Tip#982: Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining, Part 4 - Life, Animated
Tip#200: How To Build Indestructible Optimism - 9 Movie Tips
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© Emmanuel Lopez 2016