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Steps to Self-Care for Depression

March 12, 2015 Erin Schulthies

Self-care is a term widely used in recovery from depression, but it's rarely defined by the health care professionals who recommend it for relief of depression symptoms. Over the years, I've learned what kind of depression self-care works for me. Here are some examples that will help you find your own steps to self-care for depression.

For me, depression self-care is all about catering to my interests and preferences about how I spend my time. For example, a common recommendation for self-care is taking a bath; except I don't like baths because I have long legs and my knees get cold in my tiny bathtub.

So I took the idea of taking a bath and tried taking a shower instead. The warm water is soothing and it does help me feel pampered.

Choose Depression Self-Care Based on Your Senses

Taking steps to self-care for depression can help you cope. Here are my favorite depression self-care tips.

It takes some practice thinking about things that would help you feel better. When I get stuck, I try to think about my five senses.

The hot water of a shower relates to touch. Next I think about scents and taste. I find peppermint soothing in both its scent and flavour, so eating something peppermint might be self-care for depression for me.

Sight is super fun because there are so many things that make me happy to see, even when I'm very depressed. Animals, kids, antiques, and just colourful things, in general, are fun for me to look at. A simple Google search helps me look at any of those things.

Sound is easy because I just think of my favourite music. Though, sometimes, silence is soothing as well. I check in with what I'm feeling in the moment to pick out what sounds might sooth me.

Self-Care for Depression Takes Practice

Sometimes when I feel really depressed, I have to try several kinds of self-care before I feel better. It's great to have a list of things to try, though, so that when I'm feeling depressed I don't have to think too hard. I can just reference my list to think of things to try.

I know that with my depression, I tend to worry a lot and overthink everything. Simplicity is key when finding ways to cope. It works.

Try opening a Word document now and writing down things that relate to your five senses. What are your favourite scents, flavours, sounds, or tactile feelings?

Pamper yourself. You are totally worth it, and I guarantee it will help with your depression. Like I said, it takes practice. Definitely give it a try and be kind to yourself even if it doesn't work out once or twice. The third time, self-care for depression may just make the difference between a bad day and a good one.

You can also find Erin Schulthies on Twitter, Google+, Facebook and her blog, Daisies and Bruises: The Art of Living with Depression.

APA Reference
Schulthies, E. (2015, March 12). Steps to Self-Care for Depression, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, June 18 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/copingwithdepression/2015/03/steps-to-self-care-for-depression



Author: Erin Schulthies

Kristin Douglas
says:
December, 14 2018 at 6:59 pm
In a really low depression over the last week or so. Guilt is pervasive. The one thing I am most grateful for right now is not ending my life. Depression is a painful condition, like living with chronic pain, only different. Maybe need to stop reading about the many things and animals being negatively affected by our president. Maybe that would be a way of taking care of myself and getting out of the depression I feel from reading the daily news about what is happening in the world.
Kristin Douglas
says:
December, 14 2018 at 6:59 pm
In a really low depression over the last week or so. Guilt is pervasive. The one thing I am most grateful for right now is not ending my life. Depression is a painful condition, like living with chronic pain, only different. Maybe need to stop reading about the many things and animals being negatively affected by our president. Maybe that would be a way of taking care of myself and getting out of the depression I feel from reading the daily news about what is happening in the world.
Dr Musli Ferati
says:
May, 9 2015 at 6:54 pm
Active and inventive dealing with depression indicates important undertaking on psychiatric treatment and management of this complex psycho-somatic illness with many repercussion on social functioning, as well. The incitement of self-care is the fist step to improve the sense of self-esteem in order to break up the trilogy of depressive cognition model: negative thought to oneself, ominous attitude to others and pessimistic aspect to future. There are many ways to take an interest in self care beginning from maintenance of personal hygiene, to hold in goo state the environment where we live and work, to ameliorate the disrepair outward appearance and so on. These and others activities that increase the self-image contribute to overcome successfully the long ad hard way of psychiatric treatment of depression, as symbol of modern life.
Pamela Chollet
says:
April, 9 2015 at 9:00 am
Well written article. Thank you so much for sharing. Its indeed a great advice, and yes, depression is one of the many issues nowadays which should really be tackled and given attention.

Pamela
Jenny Le
says:
March, 31 2015 at 12:20 am
Hi, thanks for your wonderful tips. They're a real inspiration when I'm writing my own blogs. I'd appreciate if you can check it out @dearjenny15.tumblr.com :)
Val
says:
March, 21 2015 at 6:45 am
a great post and reminder
Aric
says:
March, 21 2015 at 6:26 am
This makes a lot of sense. Practical and simple. I am gonna try to list some things. Thanks!
John
says:
March, 13 2015 at 4:44 am
Meant to add, nice article. My self treatment is jogging and just keep moving. Too much idle time seems to allow depression and loneliness to creep in.
Lien
says:
March, 13 2015 at 4:43 am
Hi, I love the simplicity of the advice. I believe that your senses can bring you back to the moment. I am a colour therapist and teach my clients who suffer with depression to start engaging their senses more often.
Counseling Insite
says:
March, 13 2015 at 4:26 am
It can be so terribly hard to be nice to yourself while in the throes of depression. I'm glad you wrote this post. And you are right, it does take practice. Thank you!
John
says:
March, 12 2015 at 6:18 pm
Like the bumper sticker says,
'Life's a Bitch--then you marry one'

I married one. Trust me, depression is elevated when your environment is surrounded by constant negativity then struggles are daily. You must find your own happiness and friendship. Life is good. You just need to keep finding good.

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