Thoughts on a balanced life

What happens to the flow of thought and life to make us dip down into depression? The Buddha sort a reason for suffering. He found the source in the mind and the solution lay in a very disciplined mind.

Some thoughts follow on how to avoid being sad and negative:

1. Develop interests: "You are what your deep, driving desire is. As your desire is, so is your will. As your will is, so is your deed. As your deed is, so is your destiny." Brihadaranyaka Upanishad

2. Identify and Fix your personal problems

3. When you complain, cry, talk of sad feelings, or discuss problems, your friends and loved ones probably respond with sympathy and tender loving care. Unfortunately, these loving responses reward and help maintain the depressive behaviors. Some friends or family even take over chores for a depressed person who stays in bed or asks for help. Again, this rewards the passive or dependent behavior. Perhaps you reward yourself when you drown in negative thoughts or self-pity. Many depressed people eat, spend money excessively, abuse addictive substances, or have sex without love to feel better. Eliminate these and any other subtle rewards for depressive behavior.

BUT - also remember that talking through your problems with loving friends is also healthy if you do it in the right way. Bottling up frustration and anger is not healthy at all.

4. Exercise

5. Eat right

6. Sleep enough

7. Don't compare yourself with others.

You have a unique talent that no one else has and a unique way of expressing it. Find out how you can use that wisely.

8. Meditate - Keep the bowl of the mind empty...don't clutter it with the noise of the old. That way there is space for the new.

9. Pranayama - without breath you have nothing

10. Find ways to give things to people that will inspire them (that takes some creative thinking but builds strong and meaningful friendships).

11. Wherever possible avoid the news - if you want to know what's happening in the world The Economist has a very good view of the world. But the view that is most important is the one created by your attitude (to both the good and bad things that befall you).

12. Find ways to work and live in which you are not dependent on another and when you feel you are and you don't have that person to rely on - then think creatively about how to do things differently. Empowering yourself by finding ways around the impossible builds self-esteem.

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Mind is the closest thing to our Reality...Be careful how you use it. Businessman, yogi, teacher, addicted to laughing...