5 Tips for Living with Depression
Depression is a devastating illness and for those who have never experienced it, difficult to understand. According to the World Health Organization, there are approximately 350 million people living with depression. This does not include those who are undiagnosed due to the stigma of mental illness. Fortunately, there are ways that you can live with depression.
One of the most overlooked ways to live with depression is through distraction. Many people who experience depression live with:
- suicidal thoughts and feelings,
- despair, and
- feelings of worthlessness.
By distracting yourself from these feelings, you can make the time pass faster. Most depression comes in episodes. If you can just get through the episode you will feel better. When your thoughts start to get particularly scary a distraction can be just the thing. Some common ways to distract yourself are:
- doing something mindless like playing video games or watching television,
- going out, you don’t have to go any place in particular but the act of driving or moving helps to distract you from your thoughts,
- call a friend or family member and talk about something aside from the depression.
2) Take up a Hobby
A hobby can work as both a distraction and a long term solution to finding an activity you enjoy. One of the most devastating parts of depression is the loss of things you previously found pleasurable. Just the act of finding a new hobby can help you find the things that still make you happy.
3) Accomplish Something
Pick one thing a day and make sure you get it done even if you do not feel like doing it. The feeling of accomplishment helps to alleviate the depression and you actually get things done.
One of the worst issues with depression is lack of motivation. Everything around you suffers from your lack of desire to do anything.
When you force yourself to accomplish something, you not only start to get things done, you can look back at what you did and it might make you feel a little bit better.
4) Find Something New to Try as Often as Possible
As mentioned earlier, one of the symptoms of depression is the loss of pleasure you feel. By trying new and interesting things, you might find a few that make you happy. Many counselors recommend someone suffering from depression try something new at least once per week. This helps alleviate the boredom that many people with depression suffer from as well as serves as a distraction.
5) Practice Healthy Living
Although it might not be easy, particularly when you are depressed but healthy eating and exercise are known to help depression. When your body is healthy it is easier to combat the anxiety, unease, and hopelessness of depressive illness. Exercise also releases endorphins, which produce a feeling of euphoria. This can help with even the worst depressive episodes. Even though you do not feel like it, forcing yourself to eat healthy and exercising regularly will help with depression according to the Mayo Clinic.
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