One of the things I've learnt over the years is that feelings of grief can knock you off your feet at any point, one day you feel happy and as though you're winning at life and the next something can trigger huge feelings of sadness.
Triggers come in all shapes, sizes, smells and sounds! It can be a significant anniversary, or even hearing a song on the radio that reminds you of your loved one, or sorting out a cupboard and finding something you didn't expect to find.
For me, when these feelings hit, I let myself feel what I need to and then I try and do something that will cheer me up.
Here's some of my suggestions;
Go for a Walk.
I have 7 dogs (yes you read that right) and so there's always someone who's willing to head out with me. Mabel, my border collie will walk for hours and so when I really want to get away from it, I'll take her out and we play fetch for hours!
Getting outside, is really good for your mental health, even if the weather is a bit overcast, you'll still soak up an element of vitamin D, exercise helps release endorphins and will help clear your mind.
Plus I always find dog walkers are friendly people and are always happy to stop and exchange a few pleasantries along the way.
2. Watch a Funny Film / TV Show.
Laughter therapy actually does exist and is known to help with things such as boosting your immunity, as well as releasing stress and anxiety.
Watching something that you know you will enjoy and make you giggle will help you.
I try and avoid anything I know has a tearjerker ending, my friends are always trying to get me to watch things they know will make me cry, but give me a good comedy any day!
3. Get Creative.
Whether you bake a cake, get the knitting out, do some DIY, getting creative can help focus your attention on something else and distract yourself.
Plus lets face it, if you've got a gorgeous cake or completed project at the end of it, then it's win-win!
4. Phone a Friend.
I think a lot of us think we have to pretend that we're OK all the time, but sometimes we're not and when we're not, it's OK to say that.
On the days you feel sad and a bit fed up, it's OK to let a friend know that's how you're feeling. On my down days, I always tell my friend I'm feeling a bit "discombobulated" and she understands that I mean I feel sad and sometimes all I need is to say that out loud, hear a friendly voice and chat nonsense about some TV show.
5. Treat Yourself.
Whether it's a bunch of flowers, your favourite treat or some bubble bath, buy yourself something that you like.
6. Listen to Some. Music.
Put on your favourite album, your favourite playlist, turn it up and dance!
There's something hugely therapeutic about "dancing it out" listening to music releases dopamine in the brain, which is a feel-good neurotransmitter, just 15 minutes of listening to your favourite music can improve your mood.
7. Read a Book.
Ever since I was little, I've found comfort in reading, losing myself in another world, finding out about the lives of others, so sometimes half an hour sat reading can really cheer me up.
Whether it's one of my favourites, that I've read a million times or a new author I've just come across, reading is one of my favourite things.
This is just a list of things that I do when I feel sad, but if you're experiencing real waves of depression and really struggling, then please consult the help of a professional, either your GP, a professional counsellor or an organisation such as the Samaritans.