• Empty wooden seats in a classroom

Back to school anxiety?

We’re well into it now; the routine, the agendas, the lunches, the transportation… From Kindergarten to University, starting a new school year always brings a good dose of stress (totally normal of course). But, if it builds up and becomes too much, it can lead to fatigue, brain fog, anxiety and depression.

How do you build resilience against anxiety and depression?
There are several proven tools out there including meditation, breathing techniques and exercise. I use health hacks such as these all the time to improve my mood, better manage stress, and maintain a healthy weight.
Here are a couple of good starters:

Nutrition – #healthhack
Increase your plant fibre intake (focus on veggies) and eat fermented foods regularly. There’s more you can do but this is a good foundation. Keeping your intake of refined sugars as low as possible is important all the time, but this can be really difficult in times of high stress*.
Consider supplementing with high-quality omega-3’s (marine, krill or micro-algae) and probiotics as an added benefit to healthy eating. My children are included in the family nutrition strategy and they also take supplements that are appropriately dosed and suited for them. *(stress = cortisol = sugar cravings)

Dry Sauna – #healthhack
This is ’hyperthermic conditioning’ and has been shown promote neurogenesis (the formation of new brain cells!), activate beneficial heat shock proteins (HSP’s) and significantly increase growth hormone and testosterone levels. I was able to work myself up to 45 minute sessions but remember that everyone’s starting point is different. Play it safe!

If we spend our lives chasing up career levels and down ToDo lists, we may very well miss the point.
Irma is a forced time out. Reminding us that sometimes the only thing that matters is being there for each other. Maybe we should reconsider the impact of passing our hyperactive lifestyle down to our children?

Food for thought.

Paul

Next article: More powerful than money

PS: Here is a great video about the underlying mechanism of depression.