If overcoming a cycle of depression ain’t the toughest thing to do, I don’t even know what!
Depressive moods and bad days can seem to go on forever. The longer they draw on, the less hope you have in your ability to climb out of it.
But there’s always hope.
In this article, you will find tips to arm you for battling these low moods. If you find anything helpful, please leave a comment and let me know!
“That’s the thing about depression: A human being can survive almost anything, as long as she sees the end in sight. But depression is so insidious, and it compounds daily, that it’s impossible to ever see the end. The fog is like a cage without a key.” –Elizabeth Wurtzel
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Recognition is first and foremost
The first and hardest step is to recognize the budding feelings of discouragement, depression, sadness inside you.
Sometimes it can be so faint that it’s hardly recognizable until it smacks you back down into the very bed you were so desperately trying to crawl out of.
By then, it’s much too late, and it will take a lot longer to find a way out – as you probably already know and have experienced.
Recognizing the all-too-faint signs of returning sadness and depression takes a sort of tuning the ear to the self.
And, developing that listening ear is all about finding yourself in silence and stillness. Then, and only then, are we able to truly seek the raw emotions inside, and also start to deal with them.
It’s in recognizing that the emotion exists, that you are more able to start down the path of releasing the power it has over you.
Here are some ways you can start to tune into yourself for the long run:
- Meditation, but of course. It helps your mind to stay focused on the present moment, instead of dwelling on the past (depression) and/or future (anxiety).
- Yoga helps keep the mind and body in alignment, and in tune.
- Journaling, which can take the form of bullet journals or journal prompts. This activity really helps with looking back for progress or tell-tale depressive symptoms.
What helped me most when I was cycling through feelings of depression and anxiety was getting clear on what I was here in this world to do.
I’ve crafted a worksheet to help others find the clarity I’ve found, and to (hopefully) get out of the cycle of depression and anxiety. Sign up for yours below!
The second step is to seek counsel.
I’m not saying everyone needs to go see a therapist when they’re feeling the slightest hint of discouragement. No, no, no.
What I am suggesting is that if you know this is an ongoing thing for you, and that you are prone to depression, that it might be a good idea to talk to someone.
That “someone” doesn’t have to be a psychologist or a therapist, but can be your pastor or a trusted confidant.
Trusted is the keyword here, folks!
You don’t want to go spilling the beans to just anyone. That could add a lot more insult to injury in the end.
Guard your heart, and be prayerful about your selection if you are choosing an unlicensed individual with which to discuss your deepest darkest.
Also, it is super important that the counsel be ongoing and consistent if this is your struggle.
In the past, I had a tendency to quit going to therapy after a couple of sessions when I start feeling “better”. I also quit all of the practices I’d put into place during that low time because, guys, I’m cured!
That don’t work, friends.
It has to be about consistent lifestyle change. Quitting before the new self-care and self-love practices have become a habit is just setting yourself up for failure. Trust me. Been there and done it.
10 quick tips on how to beat depression right now:
- Listen to my favorite motivational speaker, Les Brown.
- Order an inspirational book, and start reading the preview.
- Download the Meditation app, or the Shine app, and listen to a guided meditation or a couple of “Quick Hitters”.
- Call your favorite person in the world, and ask them about their day. Let them talk; it’ll help break the cycle your mind is in.
- Pick up your affirmation cards and flip through until you find one that speaks to you at this moment.
- Seek out someone you might be able to help, and help them.
- Break out the color pencils and color something – or draw or paint, whatever you’re feeling right now (and whatever you have to work with in the house).
- Google God’s promises, scroll through, stop when you get to one that resonates, and meditate on the words. This one was at the top of the list.
- I know I said this already, but tune into yoga with Adriene and re-center. She has a great flow for depression that I recommend. She has a great flow for pretty much anything, for that matter. Or go lift some weights at the gym to just push it out. Again, it’s about what will help currently to positively shift that mood.
- Find a depression or mental health support meetup group in your area, and go.
If needed, here are a few tips for finding a therapist:
- Ask around. Of course, this can get a little tricky. But if you just happen to know someone with a similar struggle, it doesn’t hurt to ask “for a friend”, ya know?
- Google search is another, more private option.
- If you have insurance, search for providers in your network on the insurance site.
- If you are so blessed to find a name with a picture, Google them. Look at their reviews, if any, their specialty, all of it. See if their background fits into what you’re looking for.
- For when you call to make an appointment, don’t tiptoe around expressing what it is you are feeling, and what your preferences might be. If you prefer a certain gender or race, that’s quite alright! Make that known, and don’t be afraid to ask. After all, this is your mental health, and that’s pretty important.
“When one door closes, another opens. But we often look so regretfully upon the closed door that we don’t see the one that has opened for us.” –Alexander Graham Bell
Feelings of discouragement, disappointment, sadness, and even depression can be manageable. I know it seems hopeless when you are trying your best to deal with depression.
Again, there is always hope.
And I need you to feel that to the very core of your being.
Know that I don’t have to know you personally to care about you, and I want you to be well.
Always be happy,