Therapeutic Walks and Photography to cope with Depression or Bipolar Mood Swings
Posted Sep 13 2008 11:49pm
Recently, I was feeling rather tired and stressed up after several weeks of manic plus stress at work, etc etc. I could feel that my moods were swinging. When I am too tired or stressed up, my moods tend to drop. Having a mood disorder like Bipolar Disorder, I realized that I need to take steps to slow down and prevent these mood swings to either escalate into manic or plunged me into depression. I realized that in the past because I failed to notice my mood swings or indicators that I am overly stressed or strained, over a period of time I eventually plunged into severe clinical depression that can last for 3 to 6 months or longer.
I am learning now to recognize early signs and symptoms of possible relapses or trigger factors to depression or mood swings. I am learning to manage stress better and if necessary to cut down on stress level by eliminating the things that are stressing me up. So I have cut down on some activities and scheduled more down time. I also turned down freelance assignments which I don't time I can manage or complete on time.
I cut down a little on blogging. But I found that as blogging is therapeutic to me, it's hard to really take a complete break. I love to write and writing is therapeutic to me. So I am still blogging and sharing my thoughts, feelings, experiences and what I read or find useful. Visiting my blogging friends and having them visit me is a means of support to me. This is a crucial part of my recovery and maintenance of mental well-being.
I also need to do things that will help me to relax and cheer me up. Besides praying and reading God's Words, and rest, I have been able to spend some time with some hobbies. Some activities that I have found to be therapeutic are taking walks to enjoy nature and develop my interest in photography.
So recently, I took a walk past Woodlands Town Garden which is adjacent to Bukit Timah Expressway. I didn't really go into the Garden because I was alone and I didn't want to walk alone there. Although Singapore is a safe place, it is still not wise to go to quiet places alone. So I admired the Garden from the exterior surroundings :-)
If you go to Woodlands Town Garden, you can enjoy the greenery and the unique design of the park amenities which has both Malay and Chinese elements. Sungei Mandai Kecil, a river that flows through the park, was also integrated in the design of the park. Part of this river that flows into the park was enlarged into a lake, irregularly-shaped for a natural look.
I enjoy photography a lot and so I took that opportunity to catch a few shots :-)
I really enjoy nature a lot and I love to walk or go briskwalkings. I hope I can schedule more such time as it is always refreshing to me.
How about you? Do you go for walks? What do find to be therapeutic when you are feeling down or stressed up?