[Podcast] YOPD Council: Depression, Anxiety, and Coping with “dark days”

Note on a coffee cup - Take time for yourself to take care of yourself.

During this session, our YOPD Council leaders discussed depression, anxiety, and how they handle the “dark days” that are a natural part of Parkinson’s and life.

You can listen to the podcast below.

To download the transcript, click here.

Show Notes

  • As a follow-up to last month’s Council, which began to dig into non-motor symptoms of Parkinson’s including depression and anxiety, this month’s panelists discussed how they cope with “dark days” and answered questions from the audience
  • The Council members share their strategies for getting out of their “dark days.” This list is specific to what works for each of our Council members, but let it be inspiration for things that might work for you:
    • Mindfulness and/or meditation practices
    • Art projects (Robynn goes to her mosaic studio when she’s stuck in negative emotions)
    • Have a to-do list on standby and complete something on the list. Tom says this helps him get refocused
    • Take out the trash or make your bed
    • Help someone. Kevin says that by helping someone else, he himself is able to get out of his funk
    • Watch a comedy skit
    • Do something that brings you joy (For Sree, it’s eating chocolate…)
    • Look at photos of loved ones
    • Spend time with “your people,” whoever they are! Robynn says, “Sometimes I like being around people with Parkinson’s because they understand me, but sometimes I want to be around friends who don’t have Parkinson’s so that I can get away from Parkinson’s for a bit”
  • Often when you’re experiencing depressive or anxious emotions, it’s difficult to do the things you should do in the moment because you may not be thinking rationally. Accept that this is a fact and prepare for those moments by doing the following when you are feeling good:
    • Build a strong support system (so you have someone to turn to in difficult times)
    • Schedule into your daily life a mindfulness, meditation, and/or gratitude practice. If it’s on your schedule, you will be more likely to do it even when you don’t feel like it
    • Establish regular workout times with an exercise buddy. This will help keep you accountable and socially engaged

resources mentioned

Kevin Kwok and Mindfulness

Sara Riggare’s Website

LSVT Global

Pamela Quinn’s PD Movement Lab

Giving Back To Live Well With Parkinson’s

Music and Living Well With Parkinson’s 

Want to Be notified for future YOPD Councils?

The YOPD Council meets on the third Thursday of every month and every session is recorded and shared for all to access. Register for the YOPD Council series here, after which you will be invited to join live and be personally notified when a new webinar recording is posted. Interested in catching up on past YOPD Council webinar recordings? You can find all recordings on a variety of subjects on our YOPD Council Youtube playlist, and don’t forget to subscribe to our channel to be notified when new Youtube content becomes available.

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*The Third Season of the Parkinson’s Podcast is made possible through generous support in honor of Dr. Margaret Hilgartner.

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