Dealing with depression can seem an insurmountable task to tackle. Depression has a tendency to take away your hope and energy, making it hard for you to do things that will make you feel better about yourself. Overcoming depression is not a simple task, but it’s not completely impossible.
While the causes of depression are varied, immense sadness, loss and anxiety are commonly associated with depression. Anyone who displays symptoms of depression for more than 2 weeks is typically diagnosed as suffering from clinical depression.
Dealing with depression through sheer determination?
Sheer determination alone won’t be enough, but with the limited control that you have, you’ll be able to overcome depression no matter how severe and stubborn it may be. Sometimes a simple lifestyle change is all it takes, like exercise, emerging from isolation or maybe just eating healthily. Feeling better about oneself can take time, but getting there is so much easier if you make the right choice and tap into your support circle.
Other times, especially in cases of clinical depression and especially major depression, medication and psychotherapy can help immensely. Turning to natural antidepressants can work too, especially if the side effects of prescribed medication become too much to bear.
The most important thing to remember when dealing with depression is to start with a few small goals and take it slowly from there. Make the most of whatever resources are available to you. You may lack energy but you should have enough to make a phone call to a friend or to just take walk around the block. You should take one day at a time and reward yourself for the progress that you make. Small steps might not seem to make much difference but they quickly add up to make you feel better about yourself. You might wonder why you should waste your energy on all of this when you really can’t be bothered to deal with any of it to start with, but stick to the small recovery steps and you’ll get back a lot a more in return.
Dealing with depression: What you can do
First of all, support is the most important factor in dealing with depression. Even though the thought of reaching out to family and friends may seem a bit overwhelming at the moment, you must remember that they love you and care for you and will always want to help you. Share what you’re going through with them. You might have drifted away from some of your most treasured relationships, but these are the people who can get you through this tough time in your life.
Secondly, don’t excessively isolate yourself from social activities. It might feel like the right thing to retreat into your own little shell, especially if you are an introvert at heart, but being around people who care will help you feel less depressed. These social activities need not be with a large group; even a single social activity with just one stranger is a help.
Next, you can do things that you used to enjoy and had fun doing. Make a list of things that boost your mood, such as reading a good book or taking a long, hot bath. You might not want to do these things initially, but you’ll feel a whole lot better by the time you’re done. More importantly, aim to get around 8 hours of sleep. Depression can play with your sleeping cycle to either make you sleep too much or too little. Practicing relaxation techniques can also go a long way in dealing with depression. Techniques like yoga, deep breathing or meditation help the mind to relax and think positively.
Join a support group and seek counseling to prevent the depression from worsening or returning. Dealing with depression is a tough thing to do but having someone to reach out to, even a complete stranger, in your stages of recovery helps a lot.