It's common for stress, anxiety, or feelings sadness or hopelessness to affect all of us to some degree, however when these feelings start to become the "norm" rather than the exception, it's time to look for some help. While there are many causes and factors that can lead to these feelings, some outward symptoms can also be causes leading to a perpetual cycle that we can find ourselves trapped in. Here's some things that have been proven to help. Many of these things won't come naturally if you're feeling hopeless or anxious, but remember you have some choices that can give you more control if these feelings start taking over. Find someone to talk to Talking to someone you trust, a friend, family member, counsellor, can be a great way to connect and be supported emotionally. Catch up regularly. Sometimes talking things through can bring another useful perspective. Diet Eating better - less processed sugar, soft drinks, saturated fats, deep-fried food, caffeine, and a more balanced diet can greatly benefit your physical body and emotional outlook. Remember your body and mind are connected. Changes in your mind can affect your body (heart-rate, breathing etc.) and vice-versa. Omega-3 fatty acids, found in salmon, tuna etc are a great mood-stabilizer. Vitamin B, B12, folic acid, citrus, leafy greens, beans chicken and eggs are also great to include in your diet. Exploring diets compatible with your body's metabolic system may be of huge benefit. Sleep Trying to maintain healthy sleeping patterns, and having a good night's sleep will set you up for a great day. Staying awake at night can be a symptom of feeling anxious, but investigating some natural sleeping methods may really help. Alcohol Try and ease up on your alcohol intake, and definitely don't turn to it because you think you need it. Exercise - Get out in the sun! Choose to go for a walk or a run outside in the sun each day. Even start with 15 mins. This can bring relief and help clear your head. It is a fact that exercise releases mood improving chemicals in your body (endorphins, adrenaline, serotonin, and dopamine). This can be more effective than medication for many individuals, and you will start to see your energy levels increasing. Recreational Drugs Might as well cease use of any recreational drugs as none are compatible with a healthy mind. Do things that make you feel happy Make time for a hobby, art, music, team sport, outings with friends, etc. even if you don't feel like it :) You might even make more friends! This certainly isn't the definitive answer to everything, but these choices sure have helped a lot of people and are certainly a great start.