For a person dealing with depression, he/she has to go through a lot of difficulties. The person loses any interest of any kind, energy, hope, or the will to push themselves to walk towards their betterment. The initial stage is to push or force yourself to start with different activities, for example, plan a get together with a friend, etc. This stage is the most crucial because it is extremely difficult to convince your mind to engage it in activities. The person might feel drained or exhausted, both mentally and physically. The second step is to put the activities in action.
So the suggestion is to take small positive steps every day. Try to be consistent with your efforts. One can achieve its goals by pushing their boundaries. Make sure to not overdo it. You can start by getting up, going for a walk, or dance around listening to your favorite music.
Here are a few tips that you can consider to get yourself or someone out of the depressing phase to lead a happier and healthier life.
If these self-help tips don’t work on you even after trying, then you should consider taking professional help. There is no need to be ashamed of seeking professional aid as it is just like you are taking medicine for recovery from an injury.
Reach out or take help:
Getting external help is essential in this situation. Dealing with depression on your own can jeopardize your healthy perspective and keep the actions in the limit to overcome it. Depression has the ability to withdraw yourself and isolate from the outer world to such level that sharing with your closed ones can also become impossible to do so. This situation does not allow you to ask for support and help from others.
You will notice things when you put yourself in a conversation that you feel exhausted, ashamed, or even guilty for pushing away people unintentionally and breaking your relationship with them. Here you have to make your belief that it is the depression talking and not you.
It’s never too late to ask for help. Try to stay in touch with people and attend social gatherings or involve yourself in social activities to lift your mood and keep you distracted. It is important to know that asking for help does not show your weakness and it is never a burden on other people. Your friends and family care about you and they are always available to help. And if you find yourself in a position where you have no one to go to, then move forward and make new connections.
A person with depression can seek support through various modes:
- Go to your loved ones for support. They need not be having answers for everything. All they have to do is listen. Seek shelter in a person who is a good listener and pay attention without passing any judgments and stay focuses.
- Even though texts, call and social media does help in staying connected and interacting face-to-face provides better quality and actions that will make you feel good about yourself and also keep you captivated and away from depression.
- Keeping yourself in a bubble can look safe but that it not problems get solved. Engage yourself in social activities even if you don’t feel like it. Maybe a little force can give you a push to defeat depression.
- It is found that a person improves its mood and boosts its morale by helping others. This way you can feel good about yourself. You have to just be patient and a good listener or do a nice gesture for someone and make their day. You will feel a sense of happiness when you know that there is a smile on someone’s face because of you.
- Pets are a little bundle of joy that can give an immense amount of love to you. Whenever you feel low or unloved, a pet can make it all go away. The loneliness will vanish and you will have someone who loves you unconditionally no matter who you are or how you are. It is recommended to get a pet to remove depression.
- There are various support groups out there that you can join. In a support group, people come and share their stories and grievances. They share how you can deal with your problems. You would know that you are not the only person dealing with depression and there are many out there you are fighting their own battles. You will receive the assurance that you have others on the same level as you and strength that after all, you will get past through this.
If you are looking for ways to stay in touch then here are some tips that come to help you.
- Share your feeling with others. Be open about your problems.
- Volunteer to help others
- Plan a coffee or lunch date with a friend
- Request a close one to check up on you every day
- Attend social events like movie theatre, concert, party, etc.
- Phone a friend
- Take walks in the fresh air with your buddy
- Plan a weekly dinner
- Interact with new people or join a club
Engage in activities you like
In your depressive state, it is very important to snap out of it and involve yourself to keep you healthy and makes you feel happy. This includes managing your stress, lead a healthy diet, do fun activities, and many such things. You can start by forcing yourself to do stuff even if you don’t feel like doing it. Pick any activity or hobby like drawing, dancing, writing, visiting a museum, etc. The outcome would be surprising for sure! You want a change in your mood instantly but gradually the happiness will return.
The uneven sleep cycle is another symptom of depression. A disturbed sleep cycle can affect directly on your mood. Try to get 8 hours of sufficient sleep every day. If you are having issues in keeping up with a sleep schedule, then there are various habits that you can adopt from the internet that might help.
If you happen to find yourself in a stressful position a lot of times, then it needs to be changed. Stress is a major trigger point for depression. You have to try to stress less over things and figure out things that usually stressed you out for example- work, family, career, relationships, etc. Afterwards, find ways to decrease pressure or performance anxiety and take conscious control. Relaxing techniques such as yoga, meditation, deep breathing, etc. are ways to keep your mind calm and relaxed.
Some researchers have used the “ wellness toolbox” technique which showed visible changes in people dealing with depression. Wellness toolbox is a method where you come up with a bunch of things that are instant mood lifters for you. Then you try to implement these things on a daily basis.
- Go for a walk and spend time with nature
- Read a book
- Take a shower
- Talk to friends face-to-face
- Listen to music
- Watch tv-shows
- Organize things
Keep your body active
Over the years, it can be said that exercising can assist in lifting your mood. Engaging your body in activities relieve tension and stress and increases energy level. It may sound difficult as when you are in depression, you don’t have the motivation to even move out of your bed. But I assure you, once you push yourself to start exercising every day, you will see visible improvement in your mood. Consistent workout can get rid of your fatigue. Ask a friend or workout buddy to tag along so you can have motivation and obligation at the same time. Further, it gives your company and makes workouts more fun and interesting.
The exercises that are continuous and rhythmic helps in the movement of both legs and hands at the same time. For example- walking, dancing, swimming, martial arts, etc. Take your dog out for a walk and if you don’t have a dog, you can volunteer to walk dogs for shelter homes. If your depression is influenced by past trauma or extreme negative thoughts, try to focus on your body feels during exercising. The touching of feet on the ground, your racing heart, wind touching your skin are some examples of the same.
Eat a healthy diet
There is a famous saying- “You are what you eat”. Having food and drinks like alcohol, caffeine, preserved food items, trans fat, etc. affect your mood and health directly. Always remember to have all your meals. Do not skip any meal just because you are tired or not feeling like having anything. Eating healthy food keeps your organs happy inside which shows changes in your mood on the outside. Try to eat something every 2-3 hours. Cut out of sugar and refined carbs. French fries or pizza may be tasty to eat but instantly diminish your mood and energy. Consume B vitamins like folic acid, B-12 that gives energy to your body. Beans, eggs, leafy greens, chicken are some food items that contain B vitamins. Omega-3 fatty acid is another nutritional need that stabilizes your mood board. Food rich in omega-3 fatty acids is fish, tuna, anchovies, herring, salmon, and fish oil supplements.
When you are feeling lonely, and with negative thoughts, it’s better to consult a Doctor or a Physcritist nearby your place. Sharing your thoughts and discussing them will going to help you and also it helps them to understand better about you, By this doctor may prescribe pharmaceutical drugs or therapy. Also, there is a lot of advance research going in this field, and some of them suggest CBD Oil a compound that comes from the cannabis plant gaining popularity as a natural treatment for much mental health and it could be beneficial in dealing with depression.
As of now, Testing in animal models has provided some evidence for the use of CBD to help treat depression. However, Anyone considering using CBD should speak to a doctor about existing medications to check for any interactions.
Eliminate negative thoughts:
Do you have thoughts where you are weak? Do you find yourself in situations where you feel hopeless? Do you think always negative aspects of a situation or turn every point to a negative one unconsciously?
Well, these thoughts put pressure on your mind and influence your thoughts and actions. You should remind yourself that these are only symptoms of depression that are irrational and are unrealistic. These are known as ‘cognitive distortions’. Now force yourself to ‘think positive’ isn’t a solution as it is not that easy to remove a pessimistic mind process. It can be found that this process has imprints from a past life and becomes a part of your mind that you might do it without even aware of it. The better approach is to identify your behaviour of negative thoughts and replace them with alternative ways of positive thinking.
Once identification is done, move on to the next step that is cross-examining those negative thoughts. For example, ask yourself “what is the evidence that this statement is true or not true?, what will I say to a friend who comes with the same thought? is there any other alternative?”
This way you are breaking very thought one by one and finding a balanced thought process that will eventually get rid of depression.