10 Ways to Cope with Depression that Work
It's difficult to cope with depression. I have dealt with depression for most of my life. While at times it seems that we are helpless to combat this mental illness, the truth is that there are things we can do to help us cope with depression. Here, I give my best advice on coping with depression.
My Best Advice for How to Cope with Depression
- Exercise. The importance of exercise cannot be overstated. Earlier, I did a three-part series on exercise and depression, starting with this post: "How Exercise Helps with Depression." Exercise releases endorphins, it gives structure to our days and allows for distraction from our depressed thoughts.
- Be mindful. Mindfulness is “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally.”1 When we are feeling depressed, giving attention to the present moment can help alleviate our depressed feelings. It removes thoughts of the past and of the future from our minds, and we are left feeling calmer.
- Talk about depression when you need to. There are times when it’s important to talk about depression. If you’re feeling suicidal, get help now. If you are suffering in silence, talk with a trusted friend or professional. To end the stigma associated with depression, it’s important to share your story.
- Don’t always talk about depression. While giving voice to depression is important, be mindful that at some point, the scales begin to tip and talking about depression isn’t helpful.
- Use distraction. Distraction from our depressed thoughts can greatly help to improve our mood. Find something you enjoy, and engage yourself in it.
- Help others. When we help others, we get our minds off of our own problems and worries. Helping others helps to make the world a better place and helps to improve our moods.
- Limit social media. Social media can cause us to feel more depressed. Try limiting your use of social media to improve your mood.
- Engage in self-care. When we are depressed, we often neglect self-care. Self-care is so important to stay mentally healthy. When we engage in self-care, caring for our body, mind, and spirit, we will find that our mood will improve.
- Celebrate achievements. When we are depressed, doing even small things can be difficult. Celebrating small achievements when depressed can help to inspire improve your mood.
- Please check out my video below to see my best advice on how to cope with depression.
- Fisher, D., "Mindfulness and the Cessation of Suffering: An Exclusive New Interview with Mindfulness Pioneer Jon Kabat Zinn". Lion's Roar. July 27, 2017.
Sedas, M. (2018, September 20). 10 Ways to Cope with Depression that Work, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, August 22 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/copingwithdepression/2018/9/10-ways-to-cope-with-depression-that-work
Author: Michelle Sedas
From my experience, I can say that isolation makes depression worse. Don't withdraw from life. Socializing can improve your mood. Keeping in touch with friends and family means you have someone to talk to when you feel low.