I talk about depression quite a bit on this blog but I figured I needed a whole blog post dedicated to it. The term depression gets thrown around a lot as a way to describe a seemingly indescribable sadness but that isn’t the extent of it.
The mayo clinic defines depression as a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. Which is like, yeah obviously that’s what depression is but it’s more all encompassing that that makes it seem. Being depressed can disrupt your eating and sleeping habits as well as bring about physical pain, such as headaches and back pains.
When I was younger, before I knew what depression was, I used to think I just needed to snap out of it. That if I just chose to be happy, everything would be better. If you’ve been on the internet for any length of time, I’m sure you’ve seen those flowery pictures that tell you happiness is a choice. I’ve learned that isn’t always the case. Well really, I’ve learned how much of an abstract concept that is. There have been many days I’ve woken up and told myself I would be happy. These days I’ve even gone so far as to seek out sunshine and butterflies (metaphorically speaking) and still there was nothing.
Over the process of writing this, I have realized that it’s hard to create a positive “happy ending” outlook on depression whilst struggling with it. If you just stick with me, I’ll do my best to make it through. My depression is (currently) self diagnosed because going to the doctor for something that
just in my head I can’t explain freaks me out. That is not what we’re here to talk about though.
5 ways to manage your depression:
- Get a pet- This is a huge help. I imagine depression makes you feel isolated and lonely and having a pet helps to solve that. You are in charge of a life other than your own. I always find it easier to take care of myself when I also have to take care of others. Also, pets are always around so it’s hard to feel alone. I would also consider pets to be little balls of happiness. Give it a shot
- Talk to a friend – My best friend and I used to have a code word (actually it was just an emoji) to say that we didn’t want to talk about something anymore. You can use the same technique to reach out to someone just to have a normal conversation to help pull yourself out. For example, at my last job we would say we need a batman and all of us would understand that person needed to step away for a moment to cool off and then when they come back in we just act as if nothing was ever wrong. (that one works in all situations, depression or otherwise)
- Stop listening to your brain- I’m not joking. You brain is LYING to you. It will tell you that you’re incapable of doing things but it’s wrong. There is nothing wrong with acknowledging that you’re not feeling 100% mentally. The other side of that is that there also isn’t anything wrong with calling BS on that and going about life as usual.
- Take a shower – There are days when getting out of bed seems impossible. Create a short list of things you can do that make you feel better/accomplished.
- take a shower
- drink a glass of water
- watch your favorite movie
- listen to your favorite music
- go for a walk
- cook a healthy meal
- Talk to a professional – it’s dreadful to think about talking to strangers about what’s going on in our heads but that’s what therapists are there for. They have the schooling and knowledge needed to help guide you on a path of healing. That can be different for everyone. Maybe it’s medicine, or maybe it’s meditation. You won’t know until you try.
I hope that you found this list at least somewhat helpful. If you’re struggling with depression I really do encourage you to talk to a professional about it, as I am not one. Anything I can suggest is only from experience and a bit of Google searching.
May you be safe, may you be healthy and may you live with ease and happiness.
Today I am thankful for finding ways to manage my depression.