How to Lift Yourself Up When You are Feeling Down
Last updated: April 2019
Psoriatic arthritis is not only a physical battleground, but it is an emotional one as well. Anxiety and depression are (understandably) often experienced by those of us that live with PsA day in and day out. Carrying the burden of painful joints, fatigue, and an uncertain future is extremely difficult. Because it is a chronic condition, there is no light at the end of the tunnel so to speak. We will never “get over” this disease. If we are lucky, we may get brief respites along the way so we do our best to hang on as we travel from rest stop to rest stop.
When I am feeling down
There are times these days when I find myself feeling “down.” Not necessarily clinically depressed per se, more like simply sad I suppose. It is just one of those things that come with the psoriatic arthritis package. Because of this, sometimes it is good to have something that takes our mind off these (hopefully temporary) feelings.
Over the years, I’ve developed a few ways to help get myself over the hump until I can get to my next psoriatic arthritis rest stop. These things provide a diversion, a goal, or a way to keep my mind (if not my body) occupied so that I can push thru to my next respite. I use these as a way to lift myself up when I am feeling down.
Ways to lift yourself up when you are feeling down
Do something creative
Whether coloring, crafting, sculpting, or knitting is your thing it pays to do a little something creative. Studies show that letting your creative side come out a play helps to lower your stress and give your mind a much-needed break from the more serious thoughts that can weigh us down. Finding a creative outlet, whatever that might be, helps to relieve the stress and tension that living with psoriatic arthritis brings.
Make a visual connection with a friend
I don’t care if it is Facetime, Skype, or a good old fashioned cup of coffee make it a priority to get some actual facetime in with a friend. If you can’t get out for a visit with family and friends, try out a virtual visit.
There is just something about contacting a real, live person. Posting a message in a social media group or even getting an old school phone conversation in is not going to cut it here. Use the available technology to get as close to a “real” visit with someone as possible. There is something about seeing a familiar face actually smiling back at you that can make a real difference in your day.
Yes, journaling in and of itself can make a major difference. But if you get into the habit of journaling and doing it consistently then you will reap even more benefits. You will be able to see patterns in your behavior, identify common triggers, and give those swirling thoughts in your head a safe resting place. Consistent journaling provides the benefits of clearer thoughts and let’s face it, pretty affordable therapy sessions.
Send someone flowers
I seriously love this one. Sending someone flowers is not only incredibly generous, but mutually beneficial. If you want to really up the feel-better factor, then send the flowers anonymously (but not in the creepy, stalker like way). You don’t need to send a dozen roses or break the bank. If you can get out of the house, sneak them to a friend’s work or leave them on a doorstep. Making someone else smile always puts a little skip in my step. And I’ll a take a skip in my step over a stumble any day.
Has PsA changed how you think about sex and intimacy?
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