6 Tips To Overcome Mild Depression
Deep depression needs professional help. This article is not intended as a substitute for medical advice.
If, however, you are working to ward off mild depression, you could try some of these:
Write Yourself A letter
Write a letter to yourself, outlining some past challenges and how you have worked to overcome them, and how proud you are of yourself. Once the letter is finished, review it and you will feel an instant surge of pride at all that you have overcome. Put it in your achievements file - see the next tip.
Keep An Achievements File
Keep a file, folder or even an envelope with notes on what you have done or achieved. You may feel it's rather like a star chart for children learning to tie their shoe laces but so what? We all need encouragement and recognition for what we have done, not what we have NOT done. It's the failures and omissions that people tend to point out, rather like a small dark spot in the middle of a large sheet of white paper, not the big job that got done around it! We can also tend to beat ourselves up for the messy floor and unwashed dishes or the unmown lawn and grubby car: we tend to ignore the great things we DID do, like taking the kids for a picnic, a visit to an elderly lonely relative, helping someone push their broken down car or even smelling the roses! Take your file out and read through it when you feel down.
An achievements file is useful for work too, whether you are depressed or not. Keep a record of the good work you have done throughout the year. Use it when it comes round to appraisal and bonus time, to remind your boss of the times you stayed late, the extra work you did, the hole you pulled them out of when it looked like something was going pear-shaped! Bosses often tend to remember just the last few weeks, not the whole year and a record of what you did can help improve their view of you, if the previous few weeks were slack. Remember, especially, to include any letters or printed emails of thanks or recognition you received.
Exercise has also been shown from research to be useful in helping overcome mild depression. Regular exercise can overcome both stress and depression. It releases endorphins, the body's own feel good factors and these can give you a significant boost. People who are depressed may find it difficult to even get out of bed or off their chair, so try finding an exercise buddy and arrange a time to meet. Having someone to go with and who you don't want to let down can often help you make the effort to get off your butt.
Keep some DVDs or books or items YOU feel are funny for those times you feel down. A good belly laugh not only helps raise the spirits, it can even provide significant relief from pain.
You could also try going to a support group for depression. When getting into a group with other people affected by the same condition you are, it can help reduce your sense of isolation. You can also use these groups to provide support for others and give them your own advice with how to cope, along with sharing your own experiences.
Cut Down On Alcohol
You have probably heard that alcohol is a depressant. This is true. It can also interfere with any medications you might be taking. It can cause you to feel worse, become ill, or maybe even overdose. If you are feeling unhappy, it is always best to steer clear of alcoholic beverages.
Depression can make the whole world seem grey and tasteless. Some of these tips may help you bring back that colour, joy and taste to your life.
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