Friday, July 10, 2009

Getting Up When You're Feeling Down

Image by Pennsylvania National Guard

Do you ever feel blah? Ever wish you had a permanent "picker-upper"? If so, this may be for you.

In the 1920s, if you were looking for a little pick-me-up with your mid-afternoon snack, you might have reached for a cold, refreshing glass of 7-Up. Well, it wasn't called 7-Up back then, it was called "Bib-Label Lithiated Lemon-Lime Soda." (Say THAT three times fast!)

Inventor C. L. Griggs’ original recipe included the antidepressant lithium until the 1940s as a "picker-upper" (www.cadburyschweppes.com). The original Coca-Cola formula also included a “picker-upper” -- cocaine.

Today, people not suffering from serious depression understand that they usually don't need mood-altering drugs to cope with daily life. But most folks struggle with bouts of mild depression, despondency or "the blahs" from time to time. How do you pick yourself up when you're feeling down, without the aid of Bib-Label Lithiated Lemon-Lime Soda?

I hope I’m not telling you anything new when I say that talking about the reasons you're down, making needed changes, watching your diet, getting enough exercise and sleep, developing a positive mental outlook and utilizing spiritual resources are all important pieces of our emotional puzzles. But one important strategy for feeling better (and one that's LEAST used) is as important as the rest. It is helping others in need.

* Visit a shut-in neighbor.
* Write a letter.
* Call a friend who has been struggling.
* Volunteer at church, synagogue or the local food pantry.
* Rake someone's leaves.
* Bake homemade bread for a new neighbor.
* Wash your spouse's car.
* Volunteer to baby-sit for a young mother.
* Plan an unexpected act of kindness.
* Give a gift for no reason at all.

The needs are abundant, and those who put aside some regular time to do something kind for others will often forget they were feeling low. Why does is work? I don’t know ... it just does. Reach out and lift somebody else up and for some wondrous and magical reason, you lift yourself up, too.

Corrie Ten Boom beautifully said, "The measure of a life, after all, is not its duration, but its donation." And if you've been feeling low, the best time to donate a piece of yourself is now.

-- Steve Goodier

4 comments:

Aleksandra Sosnikova said...

Great article and thank you for shaing these "drug-free" resolutions. I have found that giving to someone in need always cures the everyday duldrums that we all face. I appreciate your comments. Lexi Sosnikova..

Sarah said...

Great artice steve and wonderful reminder to all of us.

Willem said...

Thanks for a great reminder that our Christian faith can only be expressed outwardly!
In the same vein, I have discovered that when I have some unmet need, the quickest way to have it met is find a few others that have the same need and pray for their need to be met - until it is met... again, focusing outward and not inward!

Anonymous said...

Shows u that its not about us..but others..showing God's love in action! results is Love and joy abundantly!