Depression is a major health hazard impacting many people's lives all over the world. In the United States, one in every five people or about 54 million Americans experience some form of mental disorder each year including depression. Some cases are not reported and perhaps these people assume they can handle it themselves, but the reality is not so positive. The consequences from "assume" may be internal organ malfunction, obesity, chemical imbalance, or even cancer.

Negative Side Effects With Medication

Even though medication may control the degree of depression symptoms, the quality of people's lives is still reduced. With medication, some people can function, but it is not at the optimum level. Also, medication often has negative side effects that could include suicidal thoughts. I have seen many people suffer from depression who were on medication. They describe various symptoms, but each person's symptom is different. Some are: "I don't have any emotions." "I feel very melancholy." "I have no joy in my life." "I have low energy levels." "I don't sleep." "I can't focus."  All of these are the evidence of poor quality of life.

Most research focuses on medication as a remedy, but very few initiatives consider natural ways or natural methods. From my experience, natural methods can be very effective in helping with depression if the patient participates in the healing. With regular timely care, I have seen success with many patients. Their emotion is better, joy returned, more energy, ability to do more things, be more creative, able to focus, and able to maintain weight. This tells us that it is possible to heal, but the difference being that the person engages their healing by doing the work themselves, using the correct methods, practicing positive thinking and believing that the body can heal. For severe cases of depression, medication may be needed, but I recommend that you also incorporate natural methods.

Natural Healing Methods

Here are some suggestions you might like to try for natural healing methods.

1. Practice Tai Chi and Qi Gong Daily. There is no doubt that exercise helps healing, but the right exercise is even better. Your body has energy pathways and keeping the pathway open allows the energy to flow smoothly. When the energy flows smoothly, the internal organs remain in good harmony and functions well. If the energy pathway is blocked, it affects the internal organ function and you will experience various negative symptoms including depression. Tai Chi and Qigong help to open energy pathways, harmonize organ teamwork, balance emotions, promote the mind-body connection, and bring more oxygen to the body/brain. After regular practice your mood will improve, your thoughts turn positive, your energy increases, and in general you will feel happier.

2. Do More Outdoor Activities. Nature provides us with so much beauty, fresh air, and nonstop inspiration. Take advantage of being outside. We always fee invigorated and cheerful when hiking, biking, fishing, camping, walking, jogging, and playing sports. Make time for these outdoor activities.

3. Always Think Positive. Some people tend to think negatively about what they are planning to do, or use the negative part of things for an excuse. This happens especially in people who are depressed. Yes, we do have many negative things happen in our lives, both in the present and in the past. There is no such thing as a perfect life, no matter where we are or what we do. But we don't need to focus on the negative part of life. We will feel much better by focusing on the positive aspects of our life. There are always good things happening in our life that might not be immediately obvious, but they are present. You have permission to change your mindset. As soon as you change your way of thinking from negative to positive, you will make a difference in your mood.

4. Let Go, Let Go, and Let Go! Letting go is not an easy thing to do, but it is possible to do it with a little practice. We don't need to remember the bad things or unhappy events that happened in our life as these hurt things will harm our health and affect our life. When it is time to let go…just let it go. It is not helpful to think and talk about the sad things again and again. You need to move forward. Here is a practice: Imagine you are digging a ditch, burying unfavorable thoughts and then walk away; do not look back. Now these things are gone…forever gone. By practicing letting go, you always move forward to better places and achieve higher levels of rewards.

Consider Chinese Herbal Medicine

If you find a good Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner, you can be helped with herbal medicine, acupuncture and Tui Na therapy. If you cannot find one, I will be glad to help. You can schedule a Skype consultation with me. I will help you to think things clearly and possibly prescribe some herbs and Qi, which you can practice at home.

Always Have A Goal

If you don't have a goal, you may feel like a little boat lost in the ocean. It does not have to be a big goal. It can be as small as learning to play the guitar or key board, or learning to cook a special meal, learning to do some exercise, finish reading a book, or anything that you might look forward to doing. It's something to focus your attention on.  Goals help us to refocus and channel energy in constructive ways.

Connect With Others

Being around friends can make you feel that you are part of a group of powerful energy. Even the simple act of putting yourself in a social atmosphere can lift your spirits. Visit a place where there are people who may have your similar interests such as in a museum, park, art show, or mall.

Never Hide Your Depression

Severe depression can be dangerous to yourself or others. Please call your doctor or family or friends when you feel hopeless or helpless. If you cannot reach anyone at that time, drink a glass of water, turn on some music immediately and start to do Qi Gong or other body movement, even stretching and lifting weights would be good. Ask yourself, " What do I love to do the most?" As soon as you get the answer, just do it. Never ever use alcohol to deal with depression, because alcohol will only make depression worse.

In closing, I highly recommend to anyone who suffers from various types of depression to learn Tai Chi and Qi Gong exercises as a first step. Then follow the other tips above that will help guide you to see the light.

I want you to live and live well.