When you’re depressed, it often feels like nothing in the world can make you feel better. Depression drains your energy, hope, and drive. It’s almost as if you are in a black tunnel with no light. Hope disappears and the things you used to find enjoyable become a chore.
It is true that depression isn’t necessarily something you can banish in an instant, however, a set of coping strategies and awareness can help you to help yourself.
Tears are healthy. Sadness doesn’t always need treatment. Before you dose up on side-effect laden pharmaceuticals, it’s worth considering some natural treatments that might help lift your mood.
#1 Stay Connected
This can be one of the hardest things to do when feeling depressed but it is one of the most rewarding activities. Even reaching out to close family members and friends can be tough. When you feel bad, even if you feel embarrassed, confiding in a friend or voicing your struggles can lighten your burden and begin a process of ending your unhappiness. Be around people who can make you laugh when you don’t even feel like smiling. Staying connected to other people and the outside world will make a world of difference in your mood and outlook. Friends and family, especially those who care about you, will appreciate knowing what’s going on.
Sleep is not a luxury, it’s a necessity. The link between depression and lack of sleep is well established. Inadequate sleep can cause irritability and stress, while healthy sleep can enhance well-being. The quality of your sleep directly affects the quality of your waking life, including your mental sharpness, productivity, emotional balance, creativity, physical vitality. Go to sleep at the same time each night and get up at the same time each day; move from the bed when not sleeping; calm down and rest in the period before sleep. Good sleep is restful and uninterrupted, muscles are relaxed. Your body’s cells produce and store proteins to renew and restore all of your systems. No other activity delivers so many benefits with so little effort so aim for between 7.5 and 9 hours sleep per night.
#3 Write About It
Depression often causes problems of expression. Expression of feelings is important. It’s part of being depression. Sometimes when things are bottled up and repressed there needs to be a valve letting these out. Putting those feelings into words makes it easier to understand, Writing to confront unexpressed feeling helps do that by providing a sense of direction and meaning. There is an emotional completeness achieved by the ability to express and explain. The words help to organize and simplify the experience. When you have the ability to explain something in words, you feel more confident that you really understand it. Writing is a great way to complain about troubles and relationships. You can easily give yourself permission to blame and vent but not to reflect on what you are feeling and doing.
#4 Take On Responsibilities
When you’re depressed your energy levels can drop drastically, but the last thing you want to do when feeling down is to keep yourself from getting up. The moment you take back full responsibility in your life is the moment when you regain your power again. Taking full responsibility for your life means you are no longer running away—from yourself, your dreams, your hopes, frustrations, and fears. Staying active in your life, pursuing anything and everything you may find of interest will re-ignite your spark and keep you on your own side. Activities that help you calm down and that raise your spirits are important. Reflect back on your life so far and look at the defining moments.
#5 Develop An Attitude Of Gratitude
Research suggests that for many, gratitude is a road to greater happiness. Gratitude works when you’re grateful for something real. Recent studies have concluded that the expression of gratitude can have profound and positive effects on our health, our moods. It’s nice to count your blessings on Thanksgiving, being thankful throughout the year could have tremendous benefits on your quality of life. Recognizing all you have to be thankful for even during the worst times of your life Gratitude reduces a multitude of toxic emotions, ranging from envy and resentment to frustration and regret. We all have the ability and opportunity to cultivate gratitude. Simply take a few moments to focus on all that you have – rather than complain about all the things you think you deserve.