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Quick bits of therapeutic info and learning, ideas, concepts, and quotes.
Brought to you by Better Wellness Naturally
1: Quick Article
“Depression is a prison where you are both the suffering prisoner and the cruel jailer."
A Few Fast Facts About Depression:
Depression is a commonly experienced mental health condition, and it is not unusual for individuals to identify with symptoms that they associate with depression. Nevertheless, it's crucial to understand that self-perception or self-diagnosis alone does not equate to a clinical diagnosis of depression.
And yes, it is normal to feel a bit down sometimes. It’s the ‘how far down’ and for how long that are crucial determinants.
Please know that you aren’t alone, that depression doesn’t equal a life-sentence, and that help is available.
Prevalence: Depression and anxiety disorders affect millions of people worldwide, making them two of the most common mental health issues. The World Health Organization estimates that over 264 million people suffer from depression, and approximately 284 million experience an anxiety disorder.
Impact: Depression and anxiety can significantly impact various aspects of individuals' lives, including their daily functioning, relationships, and overall well-being. Symptoms may include persistent sadness, loss of interest, excessive worry, restlessness, difficulty concentrating, and changes in sleep or appetite.
Therapeutic Approaches: Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a widely used and evidence-based approach for treating depression and anxiety.CBT helps individuals identify and modify negative thought patterns and behaviors, develop coping skills, and cultivate healthier perspectives, leading to improved emotional well-being and symptom reduction.
A Couple of Concepts:
*You Might Want You to Walk…
Walking benefits the brain by increasing blood flow and oxygen delivery, promoting the release of mood-enhancing endorphins, reducing stress and anxiety, improving cognitive function and memory, boosting creativity, and protecting against age-related cognitive decline.
And it is easy to get started— park your car a bit further away when you go shopping or take the stairs instead of the elevator. Apps like MapMyWalk may also help maintain your motivation.
*And…Walking has a positive impact on multiple regions of the brain. One key area affected is the hippocampus, which plays a crucial role in memory and learning. Regular walking has been associated with increased hippocampal volume (thus, potentially improving memory function and reducing the risk of cognitive decline.)
Additionally, walking stimulates various other brain regions, including the prefrontal cortex, involved in executive functions like decision-making and attention.
Decision fatigue refers to the mental exhaustion and decrease in decision-making quality that occurs as a result of making numerous choices over time. When faced with a multitude of decisions, the cognitive resources required for each choice gradually diminish, leading to decision-making fatigue. This phenomenon can affect various aspects of life, including work, personal choices, and everyday tasks. We simply just stop functioning at peak capacity.
Research suggests that decision fatigue arises from the limited capacity of the brain to handle complex decision-making processes. As we make decisions throughout the day, our mental energy becomes depleted, making subsequent choices more challenging and prone to errors. Studies have shown that decision fatigue can lead to impulsive decision-making, procrastination, and decision avoidance.
The impact of decision fatigue extends beyond minor choices.
For instance, it has been observed that judges faced with a series of parole hearings are more likely to make unfavorable decisions as the day progresses, highlighting the cognitive strain of decision-making. Similarly, decision fatigue has been linked to poorer self-regulation, reduced willpower, and increased susceptibility to persuasion.
To mitigate decision fatigue, strategies such as simplifying choices, prioritizing important decisions, and automating routine decisions can be effective. Taking breaks, practicing mindfulness, and engaging in activities that restore mental energy, like exercise or relaxation techniques, can also help combat decision fatigue.
Understanding decision fatigue allows us to approach decision-making with greater awareness and implement strategies to optimize our choices. By managing our mental resources and adopting healthy decision-making habits, we can enhance our ability to make high-quality decisions consistently throughout the day.
Baumeister, R. F., & Tierney, J. (2011). Willpower: Rediscovering the greatest human strength. Penguin Books.
Vohs, K. D., Baumeister, R. F., Schmeichel, B. J., Twenge, J. M., Nelson, N. M., & Tice, D. M. (2008). Making choices impairs subsequent self-control: A limited-resource account of decision making, self-regulation, and active initiative. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 94(5), 883-898.
Danziger, S., Levav, J., & Avnaim-Pesso, L. (2011). Extraneous factors in judicial decisions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 108(17), 6889-6892.
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