Honestly, there are a lot of things that anyone can be depressed about. From climate change to the changes that are happening in the world, and even those simple events that we can’t move on from. Research says that depression can run on genes too, while some say that it is from a collective feeling of anger, loss, or pain.
The silver lining with fighting depression is how easily you can get over it – if you know how to get the right mindset. Though the solution isn’t always a one-size-fits-all, these steps can help you start on the right track.
- Depression is normal.
To find the solution to a problem, you must first recognize the problem. Common signs of having depression are uncontrollable emotions, changes in appetite and weight, anxiety, increased fatigue, and even thoughts of having suicide. If you are currently experiencing these, you most likely have depression. Recognizing that you have depression does not mean you own it, but instead, look for a way to get through it. If you are reading this, it means you are looking for the solution and that’s a great way to start!
People around you may have a different perception of depression. But that’s okay, it is the same with how people see things differently in general. What other people think should be the least of your concerns right now.
- Suppression is unhealthy.
Now that you have recognized the problem, it is not healthy to keep it all to yourself. Whenever you keep it to yourself, the more you get to ponder on them instead of getting off it. The key for this step is to start getting a support system. Talk to your family or friends about what you truly feel. You should be able to see that there are people around you that can fight with you on battling depression.
You can also start by writing a diary or journaling, not for the purpose of reflecting on them. This will help you see a clearer picture of how to battle them.
- Today doesn’t mean it is the future.
It feels like there is an information overload in the world today. The more people know about something, the more they make assumptions about what the future holds. With depression, your first impression could be antidepressant drugs for the rest of your life. Some may have this perception leading them to avoid seeking professional help.
When you look at celebrities, a lot of them were able to fight depression and moved on from what happened. They still continue enjoying life while being proud to get over depression.
- No generalization.
Depression would sometimes help you look at things in general, instead of pointing out their causes. Dealing with the parts that contribute toward your depression would be preferable to look at the big picture. Overgeneralizing does not help, because it will mostly ask you to find solutions as a whole instead of breaking it down into ‘smaller pieces.’
Ask yourself, what are the events or things that contribute to what I am feeling now? How can I get over to each of them?
- Logic and common sense are your best weapon.
We know that depression involves uncontrollable emotions. The key to fighting it is to know when to use logic and common sense. What will benefit me if I show this kind of behavior? Do I get something good out of expressing this emotion?
Most likely there are irrational voices in the mind of someone who has depression. Instead of giving in, fight what the negative mind is suggesting by looking at the reality of the outcome.
- Keep yourself busy with something worthwhile.
We’ve all seen it, keeping ourselves busy keeps our mind off the negative things. It will help shift the attention to what we are doing. It doesn’t mean you have to start with life-changing activities, but you can begin with small things like arranging your cupboard.
Exercising is great for fighting depression, and also contributes to a healthier physical body. If you have a smartwatch, some of them have sensors that track your progress. It would give awards every time you hit them, which can give a sense of tangible achievement.
- Have a reward system.
Now that you have shifted your attention to doing something worthwhile, reward yourself even in the simplest forms. Every time you hit your achievements, treat yourself by giving in to life simple indulgences such as having a chocolate drink or eating out to your favorite restaurant for a month’s worth of achievements.
It is important to reward yourself with something that contributes to better wellbeing, and not with toxic substances (you know what we mean). If you don’t think of any rewards, recognizing your success is the simplest way.
- Doing it again and again.
Creating a routine will help you take the negative things off your mind. It doesn’t have to be for the whole day, you may start with the things you can do at home after work. Always keep in mind, not to overwork and it could lead to exhaustion.
- Try doing something fun!
Battling depression does not always involve doing something more depressing to keep your mind off it. You can also try doing something you really like or start with a hobby that you never get to start with. Watching comedy series could be a great way too!
- If all else fails…
If these steps do not work for you, don’t worry. It is not the end of you, but it is the beginning of something better! There is nothing wrong with seeking professional advice as they know the best on how to fight your current condition. If you are feeling shy, there are a lot of professionals who would agree on confidentiality and would meet up at your preferred timing. If this step sounds too grand, you can start by contacting mental health advocates with their toll-free numbers.
Depression can happen to anyone, especially in this world where things seem to be harder than they used to be. Know that this situation can be temporary, and you will be able to see a brighter future ahead of you.