Separate Yourself From The Depression
A condition does not define a person they are not their illness. When depression symptoms begin, some people find it helpful to repeat: I am not depression, I just have depression.
A person should remind themselves of all the other aspects of themselves. They may also be a parent, sibling, friend, spouse, neighbor, and colleague. Each person has their own strengths, abilities, and positive qualities that make them who they are.
How Is Seasonal Affective Disorder Treated
Your provider will talk to you about treatment options. You may need a combination of treatments, including:
- Light therapy: Bright light therapy, using a special lamp, can help treat SAD.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy :CBT is a type of talk therapy. Research has shown it effectively treats SAD, producing the longest-lasting effects of any treatment approach.
- Antidepressant medication: Sometimes, providers recommend medication for depression, either alone or with light therapy.
- Spending time outdoors: Getting more sunlight can help improve your symptoms. Try to get out during the day. Also, increase the amount of sunlight that enters your home or office.
- Vitamin D: A vitamin D supplement may help improve your symptoms.
Tip : Get A Daily Dose Of Sunlight
Sunlight can help boost serotonin levels and improve your mood. Whenever possible, get outside during daylight hours and expose yourself to the sun for at least 15 minutes a day. Remove sunglasses and use sunscreen as needed.
- Take a walk on your lunch break, have your coffee outside, enjoy an al fresco meal, or spend time gardening.
- Double up on the benefits of sunlight by exercising outside. Try hiking, walking in a local park, or playing golf or tennis with a friend.
- Increase the amount of natural light in your home and workplace by opening blinds and drapes and sitting near windows.
- If you live somewhere with little winter sunshine, try using a light therapy box.
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Bullet Journal Styles And Trends
Bullet journaling is all about self-expression. You can use calligraphy and stencils, add sketches and doodles, even decorate with stickers and stamps or, you can keep it simple with clean lines and bold, colorful lettering.
While every bullet journal and the person who created it is unique, journalers tend to fall into similar stylistic categories. These include:
Tip : Challenge Negative Thinking
Do you feel like youre powerless or weak? That bad things happen and theres not much you can do about it? That your situation is hopeless? Depression puts a negative spin on everything, including the way you see yourself and your expectations for the future.
When these types of thoughts overwhelm you, its important to remember that this is a symptom of your depression and these irrational, pessimistic attitudesknown as cognitive distortionsarent realistic. When you really examine them they dont hold up. But even so, they can be tough to give up. You cant break out of this pessimistic mind frame by telling yourself to just think positive. Often, its part of a lifelong pattern of thinking thats become so automatic youre not even completely aware of it. Rather, the trick is to identify the type of negative thoughts that are fueling your depression, and replace them with a more balanced way of thinking.
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The Source Of Depression
Depression is a kind of agony. If you have become agony and not ecstasy, it is because a large part of your life energy is happening compulsively, not consciously. It is happening as a reaction to external situations. Once you are happening compulsively, becoming depressed is very normal, because external situations are never a hundred percent in your control. There are so many things happening in the world if you react compulsively, getting lost and becoming miserable is natural. The more exposed you are to life, the more miserable you will become.
People can cause depression in their mood in so many ways. If you take away what they think is precious, they become depressed. The tragedy with a lot of people, especially in affluent societies, is that they have everything and yet they have nothing. Depression means that somewhere, a certain hopelessness has set in. If you go to some very poor village in India, they are really impoverished, but you will see joyful faces because they have hope that it is going to be better tomorrow. In affluent societies, that hope is gone. Depression has set in because everything that can be used externally has been fixed.
As we work on the outside, we must also fix the inside. Then the world would be beautiful. What we call as a spiritual process is just this not just fixing the objective aspect of your life but taking care of the subjectivity of who you are.
You Cannot Will Yourself Well
“It is not for a lack of will that you are not better,” said the psych registrar.
“You need to think of this as a medical illness that needs treatment, because it is. There’s no other way to explain that 11-15 per cent of Australians experience it every year,” he said.
Instead of white-knuckled will, it was more helpful to approach recovery with self-compassion.
“Compassion is when love meets suffering and stays loving. That’s compassion,” says author and clinical psychologist Christopher Germer.
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Practice These Coping Skills Every Day
I recommend doing many if not all of the following coping skills and techniques once a day when experiencing depression. Its important to know you probably wont be motivated to do any of them at first because depression frequently saps motivation. In other words, know that its normal to feel unmotivated until youre halfway done.
The patients I work with who frequently practice these coping skills get better.The seven techniques can be memorized with the acronym MY PEERS.
1. Meaning: Find small ways to be of service to others.
Find personal meaning by serving something larger than yourself. Remember service doesnt have to be big to count. Consider this, Success, like happiness, cannot be pursued it must ensue as the unintended side effect of ones personal dedication to a course greater than oneself. Viktor E. Frankl, Mans Search for Meaning
2. Your goals: Find workable goals that give you a sense of accomplishment.
Most people feel guilty when talking about goals because they set unreasonable or unworkable goals. A goal is workable if its:
If something goes wrong with your goal, adopt a what can I learn from this? attitude . Also, be careful when comparing your progress with others. We usually compare our biggest weakness with another persons biggest strength. This is unfair .
3. Pleasant Events: Schedule pleasant activities or events.
4. Engagement: Stay in the present.
5. Exercise: And, eat right too.
Help Yourself Out Of Depression
Experts give advice about steps people can take to help ease their depression.
Recovery from depression can be a long process. A variety of treatments for depression exists, but they may take time before an effect is noticed. Weeks, if not months, may pass between the time when you see a health care provider about depression and when your mood starts to lift.
While some improvement may be seen after starting antidepressants, they can take at least three weeks to start having an effect on your mood. What’s more, the first medication or combination of medications you try may not work for you in that case you’ll have to start over.
In the meantime, there are things you can do, as well as things you can avoid, to help yourself feel better, or at least keep from sinking deeper into depression.
You are somewhat responsible — but not entirely responsible — for your state of mind, says psychologist James Aikens, PhD, an assistant professor of family medicine and psychiatry at the University of Michigan.
“You’re not responsible for being depressed. Your responsibility is to make some reasonable efforts towards feeling better,” he tells WebMD.
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Grant Yourself Grace While You Recover
Theres no easy way to put this. Mental illness is hard, life is hard, and living with mental illness is even harder. Grace is the state of accepting your own limitations and struggles to overcome them.
Youre not going to get it right all the time, and thats okay. The important thing is to keep doing the things that will help keep the depression at bay as much as possible. If you have a support network, this is where they can really help you by keeping you on track.
Take some time to remind yourself that youre doing your best, even if your best isnt so good. Of course, it wont be all the time, especially if you have recurring bouts of depression that you need to get through.
But you can get through it you can continue to recover and get your life back where you want it. Recovery from depression is challenging, but it is doable. Many people with depression go on to live meaningful, fulfilling lives.
Want a helping hand to guide you as you come out of depression? Talking to someone can really help you to handle whatever life throws at you. Its a great way to get your thoughts and your worries out of your head so you can work through them.
We really recommend you speak to a therapist rather than a friend or family member. Why? Because they are trained to help people in situations like yours. They can help you to recover, rebuild, and be happy again after the worst of your depression has passed.
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Exercise Is Something You Can Do Right Now To Boost Your Mood
Your fatigue will improve if you stick with it. Starting to exercise can be difficult when youre depressed and feeling exhausted. But research shows that your energy levels will improve if you keep with it. Exercise will help you to feel energized and less fatigued, not more.
Find exercises that are continuous and rhythmic. The most benefits for depression come from rhythmic exercisesuch as walking, weight training, swimming, martial arts, or dancingwhere you move both your arms and legs.
Add a mindfulness element, especially if your depression is rooted in unresolved trauma or fed by obsessive, negative thoughts. Focus on how your body feels as you movesuch as the sensation of your feet hitting the ground, or the feeling of the wind on your skin, or the rhythm of your breathing.
Pair up with an exercise partner. Not only does working out with others enable you to spend time socializing, it can also help to keep you motivated. Try joining a running club, taking a water aerobics or dance class, seeking out tennis partners, or enrolling in a soccer or volleyball league.
Take a dog for a walk.If you dont own a dog, you can volunteer to walk homeless dogs for an animal shelter or rescue group. Youll not only be helping yourself but also be helping to socialize and exercise the dogs, making them more adoptable.
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Seeking Help For Depression
Get help if you’re still feeling down or depressed after a couple of weeks.
Treatments for depression include psychological therapies and antidepressants.
You can talk it through with your GP first if you prefer. Your GP can also tell you about antidepressants.
If you start to feel that your life isn’t worth living or about harming yourself, get help straight away.
- contact Samaritans on 116 123 for 24-hour confidential, non-judgemental emotional support
Find Healthy Ways To Address Your Stress
Prolonged stress can affect your body in so many negative ways. When the brain recognizes stress, it starts changing physiological processes to deal with the stress. One of those changes is the production of the hormone cortisol. Cortisol tells your body to be prepared to deal with a threat. Thats all well and good when youre going through temporary stress, but not so good when its a long-term stressful situation.
Cortisol can contribute to heart attacks, strokes, high blood pressure, depression, anxiety, gastrointestinal issues, and many other problems when it is in your system for an extended time.
Life is stressful. The boss at work may be a jerk who stresses you out. The job itself may be high stress and difficult. Then you have the general responsibilities of life like caring for family, getting those bills paid, and addressing any issues that pop up unexpectedly. You may be worried about your friendships and relationship because they arent going so smoothly.
You need healthy ways to deal with stress, so you dont drown in it. Activities like exercise, healthy eating, journaling, and meditation can significantly reduce stress. In addition, a relaxing hobby is a good option to take your mind off your difficulties for a little while.
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Try Meditation And Exercise
We all know exercise is good for our bodies, but it is equally effective in dealing with depression, anxiety, and stress. As you work out, there are physiological changes in your brain, like the release of endorphins, which help fight mild to moderate depression. Likewise, meditation creates positive space in our minds, prepares the brain for stressful situations, and helps us fight depression.
A healthy body breeds a healthy mind, and a healthy mind nourishes a healthy body!
Learn How To Stop Negative Thoughts
Depression doesn’t just make you feel bad, it can also cause you to think more negatively. Changing those negative thoughts, however, can improve your mood.
Cognitive behavioral therapy is a type of therapy that works to alter common patterns of negative thinking called cognitive distortions in order to eliminate depression. There are also many self-help books, apps, and online courses that can help you learn how to change your unhealthy thinking patterns.
The symptoms of depression, such as fatigue and difficulty concentrating, make procrastination tempting.
Putting things off fuels depression. It can lead to increased guilt, worry, and stress.
It’s important to set deadlines and manage your time well. Establish short-term goals and work hard to get the most important things done first. Each task you successfully complete will help you break through the habit of procrastination.
Help Them To Find Support
Your friend might not be aware of what professional support options are available, or they may be unsure of how to get support. Even if they know about support options, it can be daunting to see a health professional.
You can offer support by encouraging your friend to speak to a health professional or an adult they trust. You could offer to join them for the conversation if they want, or even ask if theyd like you to book the appointment if its with a professional. A GP can organise a mental health care plan for them if needed. This means that your friend will get a referral to a psychologist or other professional. Theyll also get Medicare-subsidised sessions getting help doesnt have to mean they have to fork out hundreds of dollars.
Not everyone is ready to see somebody face-to-face. You could recommend hotlines or online chat-based helplines. The ReachOut NextStep tool can also provide tailored support options so they can make their own plan. Here are some support services they could use, and some more information about getting professional support for depression and anxiety.
If theyre not able to seek help on their own, ask for their permission to talk to an adult they trust on their behalf. If they refuse, and youre still really concerned, consider talking to an adult you trust, such as a teacher, parent or school counsellor.
Get Your Diet Back To Something Healthier
A healthy diet plays an important role in managing mental health. As anyone with depression can tell you, eating habits often suffer greatly because depression can kill your appetite. Not only that, but depression robs you of the energy to make plans for meals, go to the grocery store, deal with navigating people in the store, find your food, talk to the cashier, and then head home.
Each of those steps can seem like an insurmountable obstacle when you have no energy to deal with it. So, a person experiencing depression may not eat, order out, or just consume junk food.
Take some time to correct your eating habits. Try to lay off caffeine and stimulants, eat healthier food, and drink more water. Try to get back onto a regular eating schedule to get your energy back up. Good nutrition also plays a role in preventing relapses back into the pit of depression.
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Lifestyle Changes For Depression
Lifestyle changes, such as making art, journaling, exercising more, and practicing yoga or mindfulness, can also alleviate depression and the stress that can heighten it. Alternative treatments like massage, acupuncture, and light therapy may also help.
Diet changes, too, can uplift your mood by reducing inflammation and helping to ensure your brain gets the nutrients it needs to function at its best.
How To Start A Bullet Journal
Sure, theres a lot of fancy lingo attached to bullet journaling, but dont let talk of modules, signifiers, and rapid logging freak you out.
Start small, be consistent, and let your practice evolve naturally over time, says Sheena, bullet journal expert and writer and artist behind the blog Sheena of the Journal. Improving your life is a step-by-step process and crash diets are never a good idea, she adds.
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