When you are depressed it is frequently found that you will not do things that will help you overcome your depression. If you find yourself starting to come down with depression then try to carry out as many of these as possible for a week and then see if you feel better and more optimistic in outlook.
1. Go For A Walk. When we are feeling down we tend to lock ourselves away and reduce our contact with the outside world. Try getting outside and go for a walk during the day. The change of scene will do you good and there will be other benefits such as sunlight and endorphins that will help improve your mood.
2. Listen to Some Music. When depressed I frequently found that I would either suffer in silence or listen to the news. Both of which don’t really help. Put some upbeat music on. It doesn’t really matter if it is pop trash, the more light hearted and fun the better. Listening to The Smiths is really not going to help here (although you might be able to empathize with Morrisey).
3. Don’t Skip Meals. In modern society it is frequent to skip meals, especially breakfast. When depressed we tend to not bother about meals so much. It is important to have something each morning even if it is something small.
4. Eat Good Food. We all know the advice about eating a rich and varied diet, 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day etc. A lot of people find this hard however. What you need to do is that you include some of the following: bananas, turkey, whole-wheat bread, brown rice, tomatoes and of course some portions of oily fish. If this seems hard to accomplish then consider just introducing one item to your diet at a time. Making a major change in diet can be hard when you don’t have the physical or mental energy that accompanies depresssion, so take small steps.
5. Do Something Creative. There seems to be a link between depression and creativity. Try channeling yourself into creating something artisitc. It could be writing such as poetry, painting, modelling, photography, fashion, webdesign. The list is endless. Don’t let inexperience put you off, you are doing this for you rather than for public acclaim.
6. Research Something Have you ever wondered about your family tree, or the history of a building on the corner of your street? Why not embark on a voyage of discovery where you learn something new about you or your environment. There are plenty of things that you can do yourself and plenty of courses which local colleges might run. The later has the advantage that you can get out and meet people for a certain amount of time which is going to be a plus.
7. Talk. Find someone you can talk to. Someone close you can confide in can go a long way to dissipate depression and will provide the strength and support that you need. Try to find someone who is not going to judge you. You need someone who will listen rather than someone who is going to tell you what to do.
8. Plan. Create a list of 100 things you would like to do. These should encompass a whole range of things such as: have a hair cut, eat a cheese sandwich, go for a walk, get a better job, learn to juggle, run ten miles, take a trip in a plane, etc… Then over time cross out the things that you have managed to do.
9. Consult your doctor. Speak to your doctor about your depression. I can guarantee you that your doctor sees many people every day who are suffering from depression and he or she will appreciate what you are going through. Tell the doctor what you are doing and planning to do to get yourself out of you low mood. Importantly be honest. Your doctor is there to help and if you are not honest they can’t give you their expert diagnosis and recommendations for treatment.
10. Reward Yourself. When you have done one or any of the above, either partially or completely, allow yourself to feel pleased and congratulate yourself. This is such a simple thing that so many people don’t do which is really important. Appreciate that you can and do carry out things for your benefit.