Andrew Weil’s 4-Week Plan to Happiness

Holistic health pioneer Dr. Andrew Weil shares his secrets to finding happiness based on his own lifelong battle with depression.

Posted on | By Dr. Andrew Weil

Week Three 

1. Reduce Information Overload

If you don’t create boundaries, it feels as if your workday never ends, and you never have any time, which impacts your state of mind. To ward off depression and anxiety, let your brain rest. Enforce a curfew starting at 8 p.m. and power down your cell phone, computer and television. Try this for one week.

2. Reconnect With Nature

Make an effort to get outside and reconnect with nature. It will help you unwind and eliminate distractions. You don't have to plan an excursion to a remote national park – it can be as simple as taking a walk through the park or along a nearby river or sandy shore. Just make sure to leave your cell phone at home (or in the car) so you can disconnect and fully engage in your surroundings.

Week Four

The first three weeks of this plan are based on setting the groundwork for strong emotional well-being. If you still feel like you need help, try these additional strategies:

1. Herbal Remedies

  • Ashwagandha: Also known as Indian ginseng, this herbal remedy has anti-anxiety and mood-elevating properties. Ashwagandha is very safe and can be used long-term. If your depression is associated with anxiety, this is a good complementary remedy to try.
  • B.  SAMe (S-adenosylmethionine) This supplement has the advantage of working within 24-48 hours and is quite safe. However, it can be somewhat stimulating and should not be used by people with bipolar disorder, nor should it be taken too close to bedtime. Use only the butanedisulfonate form in enteric-coated tablets, or in capsules. Try 400-1600mg a day on an empty stomach.
  • Rhodiola: Also called arctic root, this herb promotes focus and concentration and has mood-elevating effects.

Article written by Dr. Andrew Weil