Can You Really Pull Yourself Out Of Depression
Wondering how to pull yourself out of depression is a very common question, especially when depression has ahold of you and just wont let go. You can pull yourself out of depression in a pleasant and empowering way.
To pull yourself out of depression implies that you are actively doing something to overcome depression . In taking an active role, you take control away from depression, and you do things intentionally to feel better and better.
When youre living with depression, though, just the thought of being active and doing things can seem exhausting and enough to make you want to stay in bed. Thats the depression trying to control you . Take a deep breath, and get ready to pull yourself out of depression.
What Causes The State Of Flow That Pulls You Out Of Depression
Flow has distinct components:
- It involves being active in some way
- The activity must be one that you have willingly chosen to do, as opposed to it being assigned to you
- The activity requires skill and is challenging enough to remain engaging
- The activity is not so challenging that it becomes frustrating
Depression can zap the joy and energy away from you, so it might seem impossible to find something you want to do at all, let alone one that will engage you so completely. Thats okay. Flow isnt something to pressure or force yourself to do.
How to pull yourself out of depression with flow starts with choosing an activity you used to enjoy and committing to do it. Its unlikely that youll immediately experience flow, but you will be able to congratulate yourself for doing it, and because youve done it once, youll find it easier to do a second time. And a third. And out of that will arise flow.
Find Something To Look Forward To
This is a technique I routinely use as an anti-blues vaccination. When Im down I search for something to put on the calendar that makes me happy and excited. Indeed, this 2007 study showed that people get an emotional lift when they contemplate a future fun event, versus looking back on a fabulous activity from the past. Book a trip, buy concert tickets, plan a partywhatever brings a flush to your cheeks and rumble of joy to your belly. My biggest mood-turnarounds arise when I begin a project that can potentially create some good in the world and lead to fulfilling connections. For example, Ive volunteered as a mentor to underserved young women who want to write, sought publishing contracts to write a book, taught workshops, submitted a video to do a TedX talk . The point is: stop continually telling yourself nothing good will ever again happenyouve been there, seen that, done that.
The Upshot: Depression is a diagnosable and treatable condition. Theres no reason to suffer in silence, or to guess whether or not what youre feeling qualifies as depression. Your primary care physician can help direct you to someone who specializes in mental health. In the meantime, heres a guide to the signs and symptoms and a quick assessment quiz. You can also download one of these mental health apps for more information.
*Names of patients are changed
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What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Depression
Common symptoms of depression include:
- Persistent sad, anxious, or empty mood
- Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
- Feelings of irritability, frustration or restlessness
- Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
- Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies or activities
- Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
- Difficulty sleeping, early morning awakening, or oversleeping
- Changes in appetite or unplanned weight changes
- Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause and that do not ease even with treatment
- Suicide attempts or thoughts of death or suicide
If you or someone you know is in immediate distress or is thinking about hurting themselves, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline toll-free at 1-800-273-TALK . You also can text the Crisis Text Line or use the Lifeline Chat on the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website.
Ways To Help Yourself Through Depression
If you are going through depression, it’s best to get help from a therapist. To get the most from your therapy, you can do things to help yourself, too.
Here are five things you can do to feel better. They may seem simple, but they can help a lot.
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Common Causes And Risk Factors
Depression can be caused by a number of factors. Though a single cause cannot always be found, experts recognize the following as possible causes:
- Genetics: Depression and other mood disorders can run in families, though family history alone does not mean a person will get depression.
- Life events: Major life changes and stressful events may trigger depression. These events include divorce, the death of a loved one, job loss, or financial problems.
- Hormonal changes: Depression and low mood are often
- cultural expectations
- differences in experience
One study of twin brothers and sisters published in The American Journal of Psychiatry found that personality and relationships with others were more likely to play a role in the onset of depression.
In particular, the study stated that marital problems, the relationship with parents, and lack of social support were more likely to cause depression in women than in men.
Neuroticism, or being in a negative emotional state, was also a primary cause of depression in the women studied.
A study in the Journal of Affective Disorders also found that womens symptoms of depression were different. The women studied were more likely to have panic and anxiety disorders in addition to their depression.
Other studies have indicated that women may be more likely to gain weight and have excessive sleepiness than men.
Womens hormone changes may also play a role in how and when depression affects them.
Research on this hormonal link has found:
Ok Im Feeling Depressed So Now What
Now that you know the symptoms of depression, some positive coping skills can be useful. All of the following techniques are supported by scientific research and medication prescribers like psychiatrists and these skills are frequently recommended as important parts of treatment even for patients who continue to take antidepressant medications.
WARNING: Do not suddenly go off your prescribed antidepressant medications without first talking to your medical provider. Discuss any questions or concerns about the side effects of your medications with your provider.
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Do The Opposite Of What The Depression Voice Suggests
The negative, irrational voice in your head may talk you out of self-help. However, if you can learn to recognize it, you can learn to replace it. Use logic as a weapon. Address each thought individually as it occurs.
If you believe an event wont be fun or worth your time, say to yourself, You might be right, but itll be better than just sitting here another night. You may soon see the negative isnt always realistic.
A lengthy to-do list may be so weighty that youd rather do nothing. Instead of compiling a long list of tasks, consider setting one or two smaller goals.
- Dont clean the house take the trash out.
- Dont do all the laundry thats piled up just sort the piles by color.
- Dont clear out your entire email inbox just address any time-sensitive messages.
When youve done a small thing, set your eyes on another small thing, and then another. This way, you have a list of tangible achievements and not an untouched to-do list.
All goals are worthy of recognition, and all successes are worthy of celebration. When you achieve a goal, do your best to recognize it.
You may not feel like celebrating with a cake and confetti, but recognizing your own successes can be a very powerful weapon against depressions negative weight.
The memory of a job well-done may be especially powerful against negative talk and overgeneralization.
Focus on times when you feel the most disorganized or scattered.
No One Should Struggle Alone
There are so many other people just like me who struggle with depression and that is why it is so important to raise awareness in order to prevent others from reaching the same horrible depths that I did. The work the Mental Health Foundation does in this regard is vital.
No one should face mental health problems alone and this is why I believe that Curry & Chaat is such an amazing thing. If we all talk about our mental health, we’ll break down the stigma and help others to become more aware of the onset of mental health problems and as a result people will feel more inclined to seek help when they start to experience the symptoms.
I want to help create a world with good mental health for all and I hope my story has been helpful or even inspiring.
Sign up for Curry & Chaat
The aim of Curry & Chaat is simple: get together with friends, enjoy a delicious curry and raise money for the Mental Health Foundation and our vision of a world with good mental health for all.
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Properly Charge Your Body Battery
Sometimes when people struggle with depression, it can be very challenging to practice good self-care. In fact, some people take better care of their smartphones and devices than they do their own bodies.
How often do you forget to charge your phone compared to how often you forget to properly nourish yourself or get adequate sleep?
Taking care of your body might sound like a common sense tip, but its too important for me to skip over.
When depression is high, logical thinking and energy levels tend to be low making it far too easy to neglect our bodies. And yet, taking good care of your body can really help to decrease depression. So how well are you taking care of your body battery? Lets take a look.
When people are depressed, it can often lead to a loss of appetite and/or overeating. How are you doing at lovingly nourishing your body? Are you making daily efforts to eat a balance of all the various food groups and stay properly hydrated? These are really important ways to manage blood sugar, energy levels, and depression.
One thing that helped me move my body when I was in my darkest days was to tell myself I could go for five minutes and if I wanted to stop, I could. Sometimes I stopped after five minutes, but most of the time it actually felt surprisingly good and I wanted to keep going.
Read more: Learn how your asana practice in yoga can open a new awareness of body, mind and spirit.
How Is Depression And Anxiety Treated
If you broke your leg, you wouldn’t just struggle on without help. You’d get in seen to. Mental health is as important as physical health and can be treated successfully. There are several treatments available often a combination of treatments is needed.
If your symptoms are mild, your GP may take a ‘wait and see’ approach. They may give you some advice on how to cope with symptoms then see if symptoms improve within a few weeks.
Theres something called ‘talking therapies’ now, which can really help people who are feeling low, anxious or out of sorts.
Talking treatments allow you to talk to a trained professional who can help you manage your thoughts and feelings and the effect they have on your mood and behaviour.
Examples of talking treatments include cognitive behavioural therapy and counselling. They may be one-on-one sessions or in a group environment.
If you are considering talking treatments, be sure to mention any cultural, language or religious needs you have or any hearing or sight problems, so they can be addressed when arranging therapy for you. Talking treatments are effective and available for free on the NHS.
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Get A Daily Dose Of Sun
Can depression be cured? Go outside and ask the sun. Sunlight is known to boost serotonin levels and improve your mood. Whenever you can, get outside during the daylight hours, remove your sunglasses and expose yourself to the suns rays for 15 minutes a day at minimum.
Whether its taking a walk or run on your break, having coffee or lunch outside, tending to a garden, or taking up an outdoor activity like hiking or sailing, you can make time to get some sun. You might also increase the amount of natural light in your home and workplace by opening blinds and curtains and positioning yourself nearer to windows.
And there isnt a lot of sunlight where you live, consider getting what is called a SAD Light . These lights mimic the power of the sun and challenge the winter blues. They have been shown to be quite effective, especially for those stuck in climates with long winters.
Depression And Drugs And Alcohol
“Drowning your sorrows” is actually a bad idea when it comes to depression. Alcohol is categorised as a “strong depressant” which can make depression worse, and drinking or taking drugs to cope can lead to a downward spiral by having a negative affect on other parts of your life.
There’s evidence that cannabis can cause depression, particularly in teenagers, even if it helps you relax.
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Do Something You Enjoy
Depression can push you to give into your fatigue. It may feel more powerful than happy emotions.
Try to push back and do something you love something thats relaxing, but energizing. It could be playing an instrument, painting, hiking, or biking.
These activities can provide subtle lifts in your mood and energy, which may help you overcome your symptoms.
Research suggests people who spend time in nature have improved mental health.
Exposure to sunlight may offer some of the same benefits. It can increase your serotonin levels, which can provide a temporary mood boost .
Consider taking a walk at lunch among the trees or spending some time in your local park. Or plan a weekend hike. These activities can help you reconnect with nature and soak in some rays at the same time.
Can Working From Home Cause Depression
Working from home, either permanently or partially each week, is becoming a reality for more and more people. While the added flexibility and home comforts can be beneficial to your mental health, it is not without its drawbacks.
Feelings of isolation can arise for those working from home especially if you also live on your own. A lack or physical communication with other human beings can quickly lead to feelings of sadness and depression. If you are working from home regularly, its really important to remain in contact with colleagues, both professionally and socially. Try to block out some time in your diary on a daily or weekly basis to have a chat over video conferencing the social aspects of human interaction can do wonders for your mental health.
Also Check: How Do Parents Deal With Teenage Depression
Ways To Pull Yourself Out Of Depression
In this article we’re going to focus on 6 tips to help you care for yourself at the levels of your mind, body and soul as part of your journey out of depression.
This article is not in any way a substitute for the advice, guidance and support of registered healthcare professionals. If you are experiencing depression, please seek the help of a professional . The tips below are designed to be additional self-help points that might be useful to incorporate into your healing journey.
Connect With Friends And Family
This can be one of the hardest things to do when feeling depressed, but it is one of the most rewarding activities. Isolating oneself from others may seem like a good idea, but put a limit on it and then get out there again.
Confiding in friends and family members can have a huge positive effect on your mood.
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How To Practice Focused Meditation
Here are six tips to help you practice focused meditation. Based on your availability and interest, these tips may change and evolve. Thats the point: to create a structured practice that caters to your needs.
1. Find a Comfortable Seat
As with any meditation practice, comfort is truly key. The physical body responds to meditation practice by alerting you to whether it is comfortable and supported or stressed out and in pain. This is best observed in practitioners who tend to slouch and lose the tall, supported spine that is essential to meditation practice.
A simple rule in meditative sitting is to ensure that your hips are higher than your knees. Therefore, choosing to sit in a chair instead of on the floor may be a smart decision or perhaps propping yourself up on a cushion. For meditation techniques overall, it does not matter how you sit. All that matters is that you are supported and comfortable sitting for some time.
2. Choose Your Object of Focus
Every meditation training session is going to be different because no single day is the same for any one person. Therefore, experienced meditators know that choosing an object is more about listening to what you need at this time versus following any doctrine or rule.
3. Set Your Desired Time or Go With the Flow
Likewise, if you have the time, you can also listen to your body and come out of your meditation when you feel its right to do so. This is often a beautiful practice of listening and tuning in.