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I Am Not Okay
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Below are the 7 most recent journal entries recorded in I Am Not Okay's LiveJournal:

Thursday, September 28th, 2006
8:57 pm
I'm am really starting to be tired now that things are reversing on me again. I came back and everyone was glad to see me and now that a few weeks have pasted everyone is settling they have gone back to how it was and stopped talking to me as much and as truely as they were. The people I gave my friendship to are not speaking to me and they know I don't do many people let alone friends. I had a day today and didn't do very well. I had my depression act up again and now it hurts to move as my muscles are all sore and achie. I think I'll try to sleep it off and see if I have another nightmare/wierd dream for the 7th day in a row. If anyone has an Idea to try to help cope I'll be glad to try it and see if it helps.

Current Mood: tired
Sunday, September 10th, 2006
5:21 pm
I hate deprestion...
I havn't been on lately but I had a major break down when I was not allowed to talk bo one of my better friends any more. I cryed for about 3 hours. Then I cooled down a bit but the next morning I couldn't get out of bed... I kept wanting to be dead and I felt like I was. I finally got to go to the doctor and he is firmly convinced I don't have any deprestion. I get to go and talk to a councler. I would welcome advice.
Sunday, August 20th, 2006
1:02 pm
Compliments of mayoclinic.com
Depression and anxiety: Exercise eases symptoms
Exercise can improve symptoms of depression and anxiety. Even small amounts of exercise help. These realistic tips and goals can help you get started and stick with it.
If you have depression or anxiety, you might find your doctor prescribing a regular dose of exercise in addition to medication or psychotherapy. Exercise isn't a cure for depression or anxiety. But its psychological and physical benefits can improve your symptoms.
"It's not a magic bullet, but increasing physical activity is a positive and active strategy to help manage depression and anxiety," says Kristin Vickers-Douglas, Ph.D., a psychologist at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn.
When you have depression or anxiety, exercising may be the last thing you think you can do. But you can overcome the inertia. Here's a look at how exercise can ease symptoms of depression and anxiety. Plus, get realistic tips to get started and stick with exercising.
How exercise helps depression and anxiety
Exercise has long been touted as a way to maintain physical fitness and help prevent high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and other diseases. A growing volume of research shows that exercise also can help improve symptoms of certain mental conditions, such as depression and anxiety. Exercise also may help prevent a relapse after treatment for depression or anxiety.
Research suggests that it may take at least 30 minutes of exercise a day for at least three to five days a week to significantly improve symptoms of depression. However, smaller amounts of activity — as little as 10 to 15 minutes at a time — have been shown to improve mood in the short term. "So, small bouts of exercise may be a great way to get started if it's initially too difficult to do more," Dr. Vickers-Douglas says.
Just how exercise reduces symptoms of depression and anxiety isn't fully understood. Researchers believe that exercise prompts changes in both mind and body.
Some evidence suggests that exercise positively affects the levels of certain mood-enhancing neurotransmitters in the brain. Exercise may also boost feel-good endorphins, release tension in muscles, help you sleep better and reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol. It also increases body temperature, which may have calming effects. All of these changes in your mind and body can improve such symptoms as sadness, anxiety, irritability, stress, fatigue, anger, self-doubt and hopelessness.
If you exercise regularly but depression or anxiety still impairs your daily functioning, seek professional help. Exercise isn't meant to replace medical treatment of depression or anxiety.
The benefits of exercise for depression and anxiety
Exercise has numerous psychological and emotional benefits when you have depression or anxiety. These include:
§                  Confidence. Engaging in physical activity offers a sense of accomplishment. Meeting goals or challenges, no matter how small, can boost self-confidence at times when you need it most. Exercise also can make you feel better about your appearance and your self-worth.
§                  Distraction. When you have depression or anxiety, it's easy to dwell on how badly you feel. But dwelling interferes with your ability to problem solve and cope in a healthy way. Dwelling also can make depression more severe and longer lasting. Exercise can provide a good distraction. It shifts the focus away from unpleasant thoughts to something more pleasant, such as your surroundings or the music you enjoy listening to while you exercise.
§                  Interactions. Depression and anxiety can lead to isolation. That, in turn, can worsen your condition. Exercising can create opportunities to interact with others, even if it's just exchanging a friendly smile or greeting as you walk around your neighborhood.
§                  Healthy coping. Doing something beneficial to manage depression or anxiety is a positive coping strategy. Trying to feel better by drinking alcohol excessively, dwelling on how badly you feel, or hoping depression and anxiety will go away on their own aren't helpful coping strategies.
Tips to start exercising when you have depression or anxiety
Of course, knowing that something's good for you doesn't make it easier to actually do it. With depression or anxiety, you may have a hard enough time just doing the dishes, showering or going to work. How can you possibly consider getting in some exercise?
Here are some steps that can help you exercise when you have depression or anxiety:
§                  Get your doctor's support. Some, but not all, mental health professionals have adopted exercise as a part of their treatment suggestions. Talk to your doctor or therapist for guidance and support. Discuss concerns about an exercise program and how it fits into your overall treatment plan.
§                  Identify what you enjoy doing. Figure out what type of exercise or activities you're most likely to do. And think about when and how you'd be most likely to follow through. For instance, would you be more likely to do some gardening in the evening or go for a jog in the pre-dawn hours? Go for a walk in the woods or play basketball with your children after school?
§                  Set reasonable goals. Your mission doesn't have to be walking for an hour five days a week. Think about what you may be able to do in reality. Twenty minutes? Ten minutes? Start there and build up. Custom-tailor your plan to your own needs and abilities rather than trying to meet idealistic guidelines that could just add to your pressure.
§                  Don't think of exercise as a burden. If exercise is just another "should" in your life that you don't think you're living up to, you'll associate it with failure. Rather, look at your exercise schedule the same way you look at your therapy sessions or antidepressant medication — as one of the tools to help you get better.
§                  Address your barriers. Identify your individual barriers to exercising. If you feel intimidated by others or are self-conscious, for instance, you may want to exercise in the privacy of your own home. If you stick to goals better with a partner, find a friend to work out with. If you don't have extra money to spend on exercise gear, do something that is virtually cost-free — walk. If you think about what's stopping you from exercising, you can probably find an alternative solution.
§                  Prepare for setbacks and obstacles. Exercise isn't always easy or fun. And it's tempting to blame yourself for that. People with depression are especially likely to feel shame over perceived failures. Don't fall into that trap. Give yourself credit for every step in the right direction, no matter how small. If you skip exercise one day, that doesn't mean you're a failure and may as well quit entirely. Just try again the next day.
Wednesday, August 9th, 2006
10:13 pm
Bad feelings
I have some very bad days and I was hoping someone here can help. Miriya gave me this site and told me to talk, so here I am. I just had another of my issue moments- okay it lasted like two hours- but any ways. I think it is because of my grandparents bickering all the time, and some other things contribute from my younger years. I am not sure what to do.

Current Mood: blah
Tuesday, August 8th, 2006
1:53 pm
An interesting article for all...
Yoga: Not Just an Exercise
Yoga can help you beat depression.
By PsychologyToday.com
In 1990, Jenny Smith was 41 years old. That year, her mental illness became so severe that she could barely walk or speak. After days of feeling wonderful one moment and hallucinating that spiders and bugs were crawling on her skin the next, she landed in the hospital for the second time that year.
Smith is a victim of bipolar disorder, a possibly hereditary illness characterized by oscillating feelings of elation and utter depression. And though she had tried 11 different medications for relief, some in combination, nothing seemed to work. Upon leaving the hospital, Smith was told that she could expect to be in and out of psychiatric hospitals for the rest of her life. Soon after her release, Smith decided to learn hatha yoga, which incorporates specific postures, meditation and pranayamas, deep abdominal breathing techniques that relax the body. As she practiced daily, Smith noticed that her panic attacks—a symptom of panic disorder, a disease that approximately 20% of bipolar disorder sufferers also contend with—were subsiding. She has since become a certified hatha yoga instructor, and with the help of only Paxil, an antidepressant that she'd taken before without effect, Smith's pattern of severe mood swings seems to have ended. She even taught her 11-year-old daughter—who had experienced panic attacks since age 7—the simple breathing technique of inhaling to the count of four and exhaling to the count of eight; as a result, her daughter's panic attacks subsided.
Key to reaping hatha yoga's mental benefits is reducing stress and anxiety. To that end, Jon Cabot-Zinn, Ph.D., of the University of Massachusetts, developed the Stress Reduction and Relaxation Program (SRRP), a system that emphasizes mindfulness, a meditation technique where practitioners observe their own mental process. SRRP has been the focus of several scientific studies in the last 20 years, and has been shown to significantly reduce anxiety and depression, and thus alleviate mental illness.
To date, the most persuasive evidence of the benefits of hatha yoga, and in particular pranayama, stems from research conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuroscience in India. New studies have shown a high success rate—up to 73%—for treating depression with sudharshan kriya, a pranayama technique taught in the U.S. as "The Healing Breath Technique." It involves breathing naturally through the nose, mouth closed, in three distinct rhythms.
According to Stephen Cope, MSW, LICSW, a psychotherapist and author of Yoga and the Quest for the True Self (Bantam, 1999), hatha yoga's postures improve mood by moving energy through places in the body where feelings of grief or anger are stored. "Hatha yoga is an accessible form of learning self-soothing," he says. "These blocked feelings can be released very quickly, [creating a] regular, systemic experience of well-being." Yoga students may also benefit from their relationship with the yoga instructor, Cope said, which can provide a "container" or a safe place for investigating, expressing and resolving emotional issues. The instructor's encouraging and accepting words may also help students defeat self-limiting notions.
Not all mental health practitioners are convinced of yoga's healing powers, but many agree it can be helpful when combined with more traditional treatments. Zindel Segal, Ph.D., a University of Toronto psychiatry professor, recently studied SRRP when used in conjunction with cognitive therapy. He asked 145 people who were at risk for depression to undergo cognitive therapy either alone or with the SRRP. Segal found that after eight weeks of treatment, those participants who received both types of therapy were much less likely to relapse into depression. "This means that people can learn about their emotions not just by writing down their thoughts, which is what cognitive therapy is all about, but also by paying attention to the way their emotions are expressed in their bodies," he says. "Both approaches allow people to observe their experience without judgment, an important first step in stepping out of depression."
While yoga's therapeutic capabilities are still under scientific scrutiny, Smith isn't waiting for more proof. Having lost her grandmother to depression—she was one of many bipolar sufferers who take their own life due to the disease—Smith is determined not to let the disorder get the best of her. Since 1994, she has practiced and taught hatha yoga to depression sufferers—passing on what she believes has literally saved her life
Monday, August 7th, 2006
5:35 pm
Hello I'm the moderator of are_you_okay.  Yes this community has been inactive for quite a while but my goal is to get this up and running so that this becomes a more welcoming community for everyone who needs us!
Without further adieu here’s some basic information for you all to look at!
There is no single cause for depression. Many factors are contributed to depression and it can be chronic or temporary depending upon the person or situation. The three main causes of depression are: genetics, environment and/or stress. Genetic depression tends to often be more than like chronic depression. 
Signs of Depression
v     A loss of interest in once loved activities
v     Loss of appetite
v     Crying for no reason
v     An overwhelming sense of hopelessness
v     The inability to describe or figure out what’s wrong
v     Chronic fatigue or sleeping for extended periods of time
*These are just some common signs of depression there are other symptoms you may experience*
v     Your doctor may prescribe medication
v     Visiting with a counselor to determine counseling options with or without medication
v     Keeping a personal journal to describe your bad days, emotions and reactions can be soothing
v     Alternative therapies (acupuncture, heliotherapy “sun therapy aka tanning”, aromatherapy, herbology, etc)
v     Finding a support group (sometimes talking to people who’ve experienced similar feelings is easier than a counselor).
v     Volunteering (sometimes it gets your mind off yourself and your depression to give to others).
v     Adopting a pet (amazingly it’s been proven that animal owners tend to be happier people and live longer if you feel that loneliness may be contributing to your depression a small animal may alleviate some symptoms).
*Have any ideas or suggestions of things that work for you? Please share them with us!!!!*
That’s today’s tidbit. Hope that this is a great way to get you all started. We’d love to hear about how you deal with your bad days and what makes life bright again for you all!
Saturday, February 18th, 2006
7:40 am
Hello I'm the moderator of are_you_okay. My goal in creating this community is to have a place for people to come and find support. Post about your good days, your bad days. Anything you feel like and find a community of people to relate too.
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