Lifestyle Changes for Depression Encourage Moderation
Since making lifestyle changes for my depression, I find that moderation helped create a turning point for me in my ability to cope with my depression. Lifestyle changes that encourage moderation help me manage the ups and downs that depression throws at me. To moderate something is to make it less intense or extreme, which means that I try to balance my lifestyle in a way that averages out the good and bad bits of my experience. While everyone's life requires different sorts of balance, there are a few things that lifestyles encouraging moderation for depression really should embrace.
Top 3 Lifestyle Changes for Depression Management
1. Moderate Use of Television and Social Media
Media entertainment outlets often have a significantly negative impact on my depression. I wrote about how binge-watching Netflix decreases my activity levels and increases my depression and moodiness, and I can't press that issue enough. Watching too much television can wreak havoc on your mood.
Too much social media exposure has the same negative effect. I cannot control the material that shows up on my social media pages, which means that I spend tons of time trying to reach a happy balance of good and bad news. This is an impossible task because, like I said, I cannot control what I see on social media. Instead, I've learned to go straight to news sources for news, straight to funny sites for funny things, and to otherwise avoid social media chaos.
2. Moderate Use of Alcohol and Caffeine
Alcohol and caffeine directly affect your brain's chemistry, just like depression. So when you've got one chemical imbalance mixed with a couple of substances that further knock you off balance, you've got yourself a pretty moody mess.
Moderate your caffeine and alcohol consumption so as to control what might affect your brain chemistry. Keep consumption minimal and see where it leads you. For example, I found that drinking coffee slowly instead of loading up on it before a day of work helped me feel less agitated, and it helped me enjoy the act of drinking coffee more. It's a nice ritual now, rather than a hasty way to increase my energy.
3. Moderate Your Physical Activity
Whether you lie around all day or you never take a break from moving, your activity levels should be a balance of activity and rest. Coping with depression requires a lot of energy, and being too busy can make you too tired for self-care. On the other hand, sitting around all day is mentally and emotionally draining, and can keep you from beginning to cope with your depression.
Try to do one relaxation activity for each work activity you do. Go for a walk and grab a cup of coffee on your way to your morning meeting. Finish sorting your stuffed inbox and read your favorite comic. This sort of balance between active relaxation and work is life-altering and depression-fighting.
Let Those Lifestyle Changes for Depression Lead to Others
Practicing moderation as a lifestyle change for depression is a habit that can bring fulfillment well beyond your coping with depression needs. I've learned to moderate my time by myself and with friends and my time working and playing, which helps me keep my energy sorted and my priorities straight. Learn to moderate your life and you'll find that coping with depression is just another part of the balancing act.
Verbeke, T. (2017, June 21). Lifestyle Changes for Depression Encourage Moderation, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, June 26 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/copingwithdepression/2017/06/moderate-your-life-to-better-cope-with-depression