Beyond medication and diet, there are a range of strategies to get to the point where you can celebrate YOU.
One of my closest college friends has turned to exercise and animal therapy as a means to cope with obsessive compulsive (OCD) tendencies. He’s also recognized that for him geography matters for him and a recent move (following the science) to a waterfront location has provided him with the ability to navigate the rigors of a highly demanding job in quality control for a pharmaceutical company. He recognized in his early twenties that he needed something in his life that was structured and predictable that would enhance both his physical and mental health. Just this understanding that physical and mental health are linked is a huge realization. The research has been around for quite a while, but it is often overlooked as we try to solve problems in disparate silos.
Now, he is a tri-athlete; doing well in his competitions for a 40 something. He has made a priority to carve out a work-life balance to include exercise and development to be able to compete regionally in his age bracket. This type of coping mechanism helps to provide both a physical sense of self-worth, through the release of endorphins as part of exercise, but also the sense of emotional well-being that comes from setting and achieving appropriate goals.
Additionally, he has recognized the benefit of having a furry friend around the house. A rescue dog provides another layer of structure and accountability for him. While a substantive conversation can be had on whether dogs or cats should be the pet of choice, being responsible for another life on a daily basis can have a myriad of benefits. When I see him interact with his dog, especially after a tough day at the office, you can almost see the mantle of stress lifted from his shoulders. Exercise and his dog have allowed him to become the best version of himself and more importantly feel comfortable in his own skin.
Part of being comfortable in your own skin is the ability to take time to do what Stephen Covey would call sharpening the saw as one of his 7 habits of Highly Effective People. When I taught a Master Naturalist Course at a local university, I enjoyed providing students with the opportunity to connect to the natural world and reap the benefits of being out in nature as one strategy for recharging their batteries in the company of like-minded individuals.