On Tuesday K sent me a text asking if I wanted to go to puppy yoga. She said, “it’s 45 minutes away but I think it will be worth it.” I had had an emotional few days and had done a lot of driving, so I was exhausted and really didn’t feel like doing anything except curl up in bed, but I got the feeling I should still say yes. K drove, we got there and settled onto our mats and after about ten minutes a man walked in with the sweetest little lab puppy. Two more puppies followed, and I thought, wow, three puppies, this is going to be awesome! Before I knew it, the room seemed filled with puppies. I think there were around ten, total. We all got to spend some time just cuddling and playing with the puppies. Their breeders had brought them in and all were sold except for one. They came equipped with paper towels and disinfectant spray for the puppy messes. It was incredible. While we got a few poses in, we didn’t end up doing a lot of yoga because the puppies would crawl underneath you and want to cuddle or play, but my heart felt so happy and I left with my mood completely turned around from the experience. If you ever get the chance to do puppy yoga, I strongly recommend it!
When you get a surprise VIP Box in the mail for the Taylor Swift concert your best friend got you tickets to for your birthday.
A couple of weeks ago I was on training for a computer program at work for three days. I sat beside a woman who needed a lot of help with learning the program, and every time she wanted to ask me a question, she would say “sorry to bother you, but…” At the end of the second day, I had started to get annoyed by it. I complained to my boyfriend and my coworkers about the woman saying: “if she knows she’s bothering me, why does she keep doing it.” When I got to class on the third day she handed me a Tim Hortons gift card and said “this is for helping me so much this week, I really appreciate it.” I felt like such a jerk. She then went on to tell me how she has been struggling with physical and mental illnesses lately, and how she was having a very hard time learning the new computer program during this training. I was reminded in this instance that you really never know what someone is going through and how important it is to be kind to everyone.
When I worked at Indigo I heard a lot about Heather O’Neill- a Canadian author who so many of my coworkers loved. Never having read any of her books, I came across Lullabies For Little Criminals at a thrift store and thought I would give it a try. I did not regret it. A beautifully written book on the life of a girl growing up in the streets of Montreal more or less on her own. Told through the innocent eyes of Baby, 12, who doesn’t know any other life so she doesn’t know to be sad about her. I highly recommend it.
When your coworker makes you a lava bead bracelet because she heard you mention that you wanted one the week before.
Yesterday I had swatched a bunch of lipsticks on my hand at Shoppers Drug Mart and tried the one I liked the most on my lips. The beauty boutique lady came over and started talking to me about the lipsticks and then she handed me a wipe. I thought, that’s so weird, why does she want me to wipe the lipstick off my lips? I thought, I must have applied it really poorly or something. So I wiped it off my lips after a few moments, and she looked at me a bit funny, but carried on talking to me. I get home and I’m going to wash the lipstick off my hand so I don’t get it anywhere- OHHHHHH she actually gave me the wipe to wipe my hand so I wouldn’t get lipstick all over… #maybejustahatrack
My mom and I went to the market on the weekend and I picked out thirteen books that I wanted.
Me to the volunteer at the market: Sorry to interrupt, how much are the books?
Volunteer: Well it depends on the book. Which book do you want?
Me, taking him over to my pile: These books.
Volunteer: You want ALL those books? We love young people who read. Make me an offer.
Me: Um… $20?
Mom and volunteer simultaneously: $20?!?!
Volunteer: How about $5?
Man Down – Shakka ft. AlunaGeorge
Bed – Nicki Minaj, Ariana Grande
Jackie Chan – Tiësto, Dzeko, Preme, Post Malone
Hit Some Corners – Fetty Wap
2002 – Anne-Marie
Lately I’ve been going through intense bouts of anxiety/depression that make it very difficult to concentrate on my regular life (work, social life, etc..). I don’t react very well to as-needed anti-anxiety pills (allergic reactions, decreased reaction times, difficulty functioning in every day tasks and very foggy the following day), and I don’t always want to go to or rely on medication anyways, so I have been trying different things that I read or hear about, and I seem to have come up with methods that work really well for me. Everybody is different, but I thought I would share in case any of them can help anyone else out as well!
- Eat (especially something crunchy). I try to avoid sugary or processed foods when I’m eating to improve my mood, as they seem to have more of a negative affect. I know it’s funny, but from my own experience, I don’t handle things very well when I’m hungry (even slightly). I have noticed that if I put a pause on whatever thoughts are making me anxious in order to eat, I am able to see the problem in a different light after I have finished eating.
- Drink green tea. I have come across so much research indicating that green tea is a mood booster and helps with anxiety and depression, but I can’t stand the taste of green tea, so I could never even make it through a glass. One day, when I was doing groceries I came across Lipton Mandarin Orange Green Tea and decided to give it a go. I was amazed at how much the orange flavour overpowered the green tea flavour, and even more amazed at how much calmer I felt after drinking a glass. I don’t know if it’s just a placebo effect, or if it is actually something in the green tea, but especially at work where I can’t do a lot about an anxiety attack or depression, having a glass of green tea helps me feel better with surprising effectiveness.
- Eat dark chocolate. Another thing that I have never enjoyed the taste of is dark chocolate, but I couldn’t ignore the research, again, that dark chocolate is good for your mental health. An added bonus of eating dark chocolate is that it actually satisfies the sweet craving I get every day at work after lunch. I just eat a piece of dark chocolate and I no longer feel like I have to have a dessert, and like I said, when I eat something too sugary, it actually seems to make me feel worse.
- Do a yoga sequence for stress. If I have the luxury of having a panic attack in the comfort of my own home, doing any yoga really, but especially a yoga sequence designed for stress or anxiety really helps calm me down. My body actually physically feels more relaxed and calm afterwards, and it lasts throughout the day. Here is a yoga sequence I really like for stress: Yoga Sequence for Stress
Then, when those steps have helped me calm down, and I am able to focus on something other than the problem, I can complete a Sudoku puzzle, or read a positive article, or watch a funny video, or do a crossword puzzle to further calm me down so that I can actually focus on my daily life. Hopefully some of these are able to help other people, and I am always open to ideas or ways that other people use to fight off anxiety!
If you have ever had experience with depression or anxiety, whether you have experienced either, or know someone who has, I cannot recommend enough that you read Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson (her second book), and then, when you’re done, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened (her first book). Both books are amazing, Jenny is hilarious and has an incredibly relatable voice. Furiously Happy is a very important book on how Jenny has dealt with and managed her mental illnesses, and Let’s Pretend This Never Happened is more a memoir of Jenny’s life to-date. It is probably the funniest book I have ever read. I laughed out loud so many times, and had to interrupt my boyfriend or best friend from whatever they were doing at the time to read them the funny parts. I give Let’s Pretend This Never Happened to anyone who needs a laugh.