Depression can be draining. More often it is shrugged off as a feeling of sadness that may go away after a while. Though sadness is a fleeting emotion that humans tend to feel when they face disappointments or any situations that do not favor them but depression on the other hand is like a hovering cloud that does not pass despite the occurrence of positive emotions or happiness environments.
Depression is not a feeling but a mental condition that can leave you empty and fatigued. They find it difficult even to admit that they have been experiencing this condition thus pushing away their chance of getting the necessary treatment.
If you are experiencing such feelings, you needn’t do much. Read through these simple steps and incorporate the ones that suit you.
Depression is not something new or something rare. It can make you feel empty, hopeless, and worthless even. All these thoughts can drive one to have suicidal thoughts which increase the chances of self-harm. When you feel down, just take a deep breath and remember that you are important and that this world needs a person like you. Many people are having these conditions and though everyone might feel the same way as you would, it is important to note that what you undergo and what you feel are important and need to be taken seriously.
The first step towards treatment is being frank and truthfully admitting how you feel to your loved ones. By letting out what’s in your mind, you reduce the burden and get solutions for whatever might have been troubling you.
1. Wallow in your sadness constructively:
Nothing good ever comes out of you suppressing your feelings. Though suppressing your feelings can feel like a strategic way to cope with the negative symptoms of depression, it is not. This is an unhealthy practice and doing so can negatively impact your mental health. You are allowed to feel sad, but try not to dwell on it.
Write it down and when your mood improves write about how good it feels too. Journaling the ebb and flow of the depressive symptoms can be helpful both for self-healing and hope.
2. Understand that you will not feel the same tomorrow:
The thoughts, moods, and feelings of today are not for tomorrow. Take baby steps at a time and do not consider your lack of motivation as a failure. If you couldn’t get yourself out of bed today or do the things you had to do today, consider it an opportunity to do it again tomorrow.
Give yourself time, it is good to have a self-understanding that some days will be more difficult than the rest and some days will be better than others. So, look forward to each day.
3. Rather than looking at the whole picture try to look at the pieces:
Depression can make you feel that nothing ever is going right in your life. One tends to dwell on the things that have gone wrong for too long rather than crediting themselves for the various other things that they have done right. Stop generalizing and try to focus more on the good. An effective way to keep track of such things is to write down all the positives that you’ve done that day and the things that you messed up.
Doing so can direct your thoughts to areas where you need to improve.
4. Do exactly the opposite of what that little depression voice in your head tells you:
People having this mental condition always have a nagging irrational voice in their head that sometimes can make them act on the suicidal thoughts they have been thinking about. To avoid such risks, try to have a more positive outlook and think of things that can make it worth your time.
Say it to yourself that the decisions that you have taken will have a positive impact on both yourself and those around you. Once you tune your mind in such a way, you will notice that negative thoughts are often not realistic.
5. Set attainable goals:
Challenge yourself to do something productive every day. Set goals that you can easily manage to attain rather than a long tedious one. You can start by cleaning your room, taking the trash out, or doing laundry. Doing something or the other in a step-by-step manner will help you clear out your list of to-do tasks little by little rather than it remaining untouched.
6. Reward yourself for the efforts that you have taken:
Any goals that you have managed to achieve are worthy of appreciation. Though you may feel the need to celebrate your achievement, recognizing it is critical and is a powerful weapon against negative talk and overgeneralization.
7. Create a routine:
Depression does affect your everyday activities. What you once loved doing may not be enjoyable when you do it now. However, it is not good to stay inactive too. You can start by scheduling activities that can make you feel that you’re in control. Structure a routine that can keep your daily pace going.
8. Do something you enjoy
Fatigue is one of the unmistakable symptoms that you might experience when you are suffering from depression. It is more powerful than all your happy emotions put together. That is why you need to push back the negative thoughts and what better way to do so than by doing the things you love. Do activities that are fun and energetic. It can be biking, hiking, or even painting.
All these boost the hormones responsible for mood improvement that can help you overcome your depressive symptoms.
9. Listen to music
There is nothing more soothing than listening to music. Music elevates your mood and helps you cope with depression by improving its symptoms. Additionally, music is known to strengthen your ability to receive positive emotions. Listening to music in group events such as going to a concert or even a musical ensemble can have such a really good effect on your condition.
10. Spend time in nature
The healing power that mother nature has for depression is such a powerful influence that there have been various treatment methods based on this practice. Exposing yourself to a little bit of morning sunlight will not only improve your mood but will have positive effects on your physical health too. Take a stroll around a local park, and enjoy the breeze and the movement of the trees. Reconnect with nature and enjoy the benefits that it has to offer.
11. Spend time with loved ones
People having depression tend to isolate themselves from others. To them, it may seem that it is better to be alone and never make that mistake. When you are alone, you are more vulnerable to giving in to negative thoughts. Be around people, and know that there are people who love you and care for you. If your friends or family are far away, talk to them by means of a video call.
12. Do something new that you’ve never done before
Doing the same routine work over and over will only cause the already working neurons to work, by trying something new, you tend to activate parts of your brain that have never been activated before. Doing new things will improve the overall well-being of the person and also strengthen their social relationships. You can start by taking part in new sporting activities or taking a creative class or learning to cook.
13. Involve yourself in volunteering works:
There is nothing more amazing than involving yourself with volunteering work. Not only do you gain exposure but you also help people around you and they too benefit from your acts of service. You may be used to getting help but providing the necessary help to those around you can make you feel better and improve your mental health too. People having depression reported saying that when they did volunteer work experienced physical benefits such as a reduced risk of hypertension.
14. Take into consideration the option of clinical treatment:
Talking to a mental health professional about what you are going through will be a great benefit to you. They might recommend you to a specialist where you will be treated based on the severity of your condition. The symptoms of depression are assessed and treatment plans are based on the individual’s needs. Most commonly depression is treated by therapy. Medications are prescribed only in cases if the condition is too severe.