Cheer up! Everybody loves you | india | Hindustan Times
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Cheer up! Everybody loves you

Most people feel lonely at some point in their lives or at least once a day: it?s not to be wondered at, because we are, after all, born alone and must die alone.

india Updated: Jun 17, 2006 12:55 IST

Most people feel lonely at some point in their lives or at least once a day: it’s not to be wondered at, because we are, after all, born alone and must die alone. It’s a personal journey that can’t depend on anyone else beyond a point.
But depression is another story. It could be chronic, in which case you need medication. It could be because of something that happened, like doing badly in exams, a loss of some kind, a bad relationship, a break-up, a cash crunch, or bad health.

But the scary thing about depression is that it can be more fatal than just plain loneliness. It could have lifelong consequences that could ruin your self-esteem, health and well-being. Here are some reasonably simple ways to stay emotionally on top. ? Get plenty of light and sunshine. Lack of exposure to sunlight is responsible for the secretion of the hormone melatonin, which can trigger a low mood and a lethargic condition? Melatonin is only produced in the dark. It lowers the body temperature and makes you feel sluggish. If you are always cooped up in a dark room, it’s hard to even get out of bed! If you can’t afford to get some sunshine, you can always brighten your room with better lights. Yellow light is warmer and perkier than cold white light. ? Try lunching outside office. Walk lots, improved circulation is a great healer.

Get busy doing stuff? Take aesthetic breaks. First of all, clean up the mess around you? Lots of that women’s mag stuff really works. Buy yourself a few flowers, try a different hairdo: these small, positive acts are beyond cosmetic, they refresh your appearance and help lift your workaday mood, so you’re encouraged to follow up with the deep inner cleansing. Take a personal body-calming break right away ? Listen to soothing music. Have a nice cool bath. Sniff that lavendar aroma, it’s a mood lifter, or burn that scented candle. Eat right ? Ease up on that sugar, caffeine and alcohol. Sugar and caffeine give short highs but plunge you back lower than you started with.

Alcohol is a depressant. Many people drink alcohol to chill out. But in fact, it makes things worse. Get up and move ? Exercising regularly is a vital depression buster because it allows your body to produce more endorphins than usual. Endorphins, as the whole world and its aunt knows by now, are called ‘the happy chemicals’ because of their stress-reducing and happiness-inducing properties. Chocolate is not the shortcut. Reach out to people ? Write that mail, make that call, buy that gift, drop by on impulse. Rap with friends’ kids, learn to be a sweet bhaiyya  or didi, uncle or auntie, just listening to their hopes and dreams without showing off or cramming unsolicited advice down their hapless throats. (So run away after half an hour if you feel like wringing their necks).

Kids and pets are usually great stress-busters so long as they’re not your own and you’re not worrying endlessly about their grades or their ticks. Discover touch ? The most neglected of our senses today, touch is a big comforter. A pat on the back, a handshake, a hug (depending on the huggee). Most folks don’t like their space invaded, so touch is best handed out casually to pals and family. And dip freely into the vast chocolate box of world spirituality. Just go with whatever works for you.