While research into physical illnesses and genetic disorders has advanced rapidly in recent years, our understanding of mental health continues to lag behind, with plenty of progress still to be made in order to help the hundreds of millions of people worldwide who deal with issues like depression, anxiety, and severe stress on a daily basis.
Depression can be one of the most debilitating mental health issues for anyone to deal with. It can sap you of your confidence, make even the simplest tasks seem so much harder, inspire thoughts of hopelessness and feelings of loneliness, and even, in the worst cases, push people to self-harm or think about suicide.
If you’re dealing with depression, the first thing to know is that you’re not alone, with statistics showing that over 16 million people in the US experience at least one major depressive episode each year. It can affect people of all ages and from all walks of life, and it often feels like there’s no way out, but there is. Read on for some useful tips in coping with depression and getting your life back on track.
One of the most obvious options for anyone dealing with depression or other mental health issues is to contact a therapist or counsellor to help talk through your problems. Communication is such an important part of helping to break out of a depressive cycle, and it’s important to take action and push for positive changes in your life, rather than letting your depression control you.
There are plenty of therapists and counsellors out there you can contact who will be able to talk to you about your feelings, identify root sources of your depression, and suggest strategies and techniques to help you overcome these negative emotions and start moving towards a happier life.
Become More Active
Often, many people who have suffered from depression in the past and managed to break out of it say that exercise was one of the most vital steps along the way. Studies have shown that regular exercise and physical activity can help to ease the symptoms of depression, lower stress levels, and reduce anxiety too.
You don’t have to be an in-form athlete to enjoy a more active lifestyle. Even something as simple as going for a daily walk or a jog around the block can help you feel more positive, and exercise is often a great escape from negative thoughts, letting us focus purely on our breathing, our movements, and the world around us.
Communicate With Those You Trust
As mentioned earlier, communication is one of the most important parts of dealing with depression. If you bottle all those negative feelings up and try to deal with them alone, you may simply end up feeling even lonelier and more helpless as time goes by.
On the other hand, if you confide in people you can trust, whether it be a parent, a partner, or a close friend, you can start feeling a lot better. Patients with depression often feel a great sense of cathartic relief upon sharing their feelings with someone else, and it can be especially helpful to talk to someone you know who has dealt with depression themselves and can understand how you feel.
Make A Schedule
This might sound simple and totally unrelated to depression at first glance, but it can actually make a huge impact on your life if you start setting up some kind of routine and sticking to it. Often, depressive individuals find themselves feeling a lack of motivation, unable to do the things they’d usually do, and even struggling to get out of bed in the morning.
Setting up a schedule can help to restore some order and balance to your days, giving you tasks to complete, things to focus on, and think about to distract from your depressive feelings, and a sense of structure and purpose too. It can also help you keep up with other strategies for dealing with depression-like regular exercise, chatting with friends, and finding time to do things you enjoy.
Depression can feel like one of the heaviest burdens to bear. It’s not an easy thing to live with, and everyone suffers from it in their own unique ways, making each case different. However, these useful tips can be applied in almost any situation where depression is involved, helping you to deal with your symptoms and take back control of your life.