Things to Do in Depression
Depression is a mood disorder that might induce sadness, hopelessness, anxiety, lack of enthusiasm, and fluctuating emotions. It not only takes a toll on the patient's mental health but also their physical health.
A person suffering from clinical depression finds the most fundamental tasks hard to do. It is bound to affect both their professional and personal life hence, once you've identified your condition, you must take quick action to try to revive from it.
Here is a list of things you can do during the depression to ensure your well-being and regain your past self.
Acknowledge the Issue
People suffering from any kind of mental disorder often have a hard time accepting their condition. Seeking medical help for psychiatric problems is considered a taboo in our society as a result of which patients often remain in denial. As difficult as it can be to fight the stigma when you're battling with your brain, it is the first step towards overcoming depression.
Get Medical Help and therapy for depression
If you're undergoing severe depression, then all home remedies are secondary to actual medical treatment. Reaching out to medical professionals can help you get a proper diagnosis of your condition and its seriousness. With consistent treatment, there's a high chance that you will be able to revive from your situation.
Here are a few options that your doctor might suggest you try.
Antidepressants: Your doctor is likely to prescribe you antidepressants to restore the chemical imbalance in your neurological system. It's important to keep in mind that you cannot stop taking such medication abruptly as it can result in dangerous withdrawal symptoms. Your intake of medicines should be exactly as per your doctor's suggestion.
Depression Counselling: Your psychologist may refer you to a therapist so that you can discuss your problems and effectively work through them alongside an expert. Therapy for depression can help you cope with situations of distress, regain self-belief and identify facets that contribute to your depression. Some major types of therapy that you can try out are cognitive-behavioral, interpersonal and problem-solving. Therapy has a lot to do with weaving a personal connection. Do not be disheartened if the very first therapist you meet isn't the right fit for you, it can take time for you to open up to people about personal issues.
Set short-term goals
Depression tends to take away one's resolve to achieve goals. Mundane tasks like showering or getting up in the morning can seem extremely tedious as well.
Focus on setting small goals throughout the day. Let your goals be attainable based on your state. If you can't clean your whole house, then just clean your room or take the trash out. Remember, something is better than nothing.
Achieving goals, as small as they might be, helps in restoring your self-worth. Depression can make people delusional. Doing things essential to your daily life can help you stay connected to reality.
Use Music in Overcoming Depression
Research suggests that listening to music that an individual enjoys can noticeably influence their depression. It can help you strengthen your reception to positive feelings.
If you're capable of not just listening but also singing or playing an instrument yourself, then the effects are even more pronounced. Playing in a band or ensemble also ensures interaction with peers. Healthy social relationships are proven to help a person resist anxiety and depressive thoughts.
Reward yourself for trying
During a bad phase, the simplest tasks can seem to take an enormous amount of strength. Recognize your efforts and reward yourself for the little accomplishments. It could be a little pep talk or a smile in the mirror. Positive reinforcement of any sort can go a long way against the self-hate one feels during depression.
Build Social Relationships
Humans are social animals. Our well-being is determined to a large extent by our relationships with other people.
Being present in healthy social relationships can help you get through the feelings of loneliness that depression often brings along. If in-person interactions exhaust you too much, connect with your loved ones through calls or video chats.
Support your Physical Health
Our physical and mental health are deeply intertwined. Creating a positive atmosphere for our body to be in always has a good impact on how our mind feels. The factors given below must be taken care of during depression.
- Proper sleep schedule: Sleep might be redundant to you because of incessant thought spirals. It is also possible that you sleep through most of your days to avoid thinking at all. Neither of the above situations is particularly healthy or sustainable. Your Circadian rhythm must be maintained otherwise you might become a victim of insomnia. A healthy sleep schedule relaxes and replenishes your neural networks. It helps you think clearly and concentrate.
- Regular and Balanced Meals:If you live alone, cooking for yourself can feel like a great hassle while you're having depressive symptoms. Munching on junk food might seem comforting at the moment but it harms both your physical and mental health. A significant portion of people are known to project their feelings on the food they consume. Thus, depression can trigger various eating disorders such as anorexia, binge eating, and bulimia. It is essential to listen to your body's hunger cues but during times when your mood seems to be excessively volatile, just eat a balanced amount. Consuming healthy and nutritious food provides you with the required energy to survive.
- Exercise:It's understandable to abhor exercise on days you don't even feel like getting out of bed. But, exercising is known to release endorphins which instantly boost an individual's mood. Exercising can include any physical activity, be it going to the gym or just taking a walk around the block. Just stretch for 5 minutes and you'll notice a difference in how you feel. Exercising helps you focus on something apart from the terrible thoughts in your brain.
Activities such as meditation, yoga, and breathing variations can be used to calm one's mind. Prolonged practice of meditation relieves stress and anxiety which often accompany a major depressive disorder.
Meditation helps people be more grounded and tuned in with themselves. Over time, it can positively alter how you respond to psychological difficulties.
Do Something Meaningful
The meaning of our life is not what we take, instead, it's in what we give away. Depression heavily affects your worldview. Hence, participating in things such as volunteering for a good cause, exploring spirituality or working with a charity can help you nourish your soul.
This might not cure your depression within a day but it will surely help you find a purpose to fight forward.
Inculcate positive affirmations to avoid depressive thoughts
Feeling like a burden on people surrounding you is a common symptom of depression. An individual's self-worth dips down when they're going through such a condition. Saying positive affirmations out loud every day can be helpful because it puts a positive thought into existence.
Practicing gratitude is another way you can lift your appreciation for the life you have and the people around you. It builds a positive state of mind to live your life in.
Do things you enjoy
Depression can make you lose touch with yourself. Doing things you genuinely enjoy can help in lifting off the gloom subtly. It can be activities like exploring nature, playing an instrument, reading, or dancing alone in your room. Life is made up of little moments. Tracking back to familiar territories can remind you of the reasons your life is worth living and working hard for.
Express your emotions
People going through depression go through continuous cycles of drastic emotions. It can be exhilarating but do not suppress your feelings. Instead, productively express them. Different people have different coping mechanisms. Some things that you could try out to direct negative thoughts and emotions are as follows:
- Talk to Somebody you can Trust: Whether it's a friend, partner, or family member, talking about your feelings with somebody you can trust is usually helpful. It also creates a safe space for you to seek out in case you have thoughts regarding the futility of your life. Suicidal thoughts must be put forth immediately.
- Journaling: Based on the accounts of numerous people suffering from mental health issues, Journaling can be a calming activity. It allows you to write down your feelings without an outsider's point of view. You could assess or keep track of your thoughts in the long term by writing them down.
- Join Forums or Communities: Often, it's easier to express yourself amongst people you might not personally know compared to people with whom you're bound to interact regularly. Anonymity can be liberating as well.
A community that's perfect for you to accomplish this is iAmEars. At iAmEars, individuals from all walks of life come together to verbalize their experiences and emotions. You could find people going through the same issues as you encouraging mutual empathy. Our panel of medical professionals provides you with the right advice and guidance as well. Visit https://iamears.com to learn more.
Instilling positive habits and engaging yourself in activities that either help you focus on something else or relieve the heaviness in your heart can be great assets while dealing with depression.
It's a hard road to walk on but patience and persistence will help you land on more optimistic territories over time. Your depression doesn't define you, it is a challenge for you to overcome and fight through.
- Circadian Rhythm - https://www.sleepfoundation.org/circadian-rhythm
- Reviewing the Effectiveness of Music Interventions in Treating Depression -https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5500733/