Help Yourself/You Can Do It

Feeling depressed can be so tough! It’s not a clear cut emotion that can be easily expressed at all times. Now with increased safety measures due to COVID-19, isolation, mandate masks, social distancing, it can be overwhelming to try and continue to live daily life “normally”. Some individuals are now unemployed while others have been scaled down to part-time work only. So many changes, as schools are going remote as new positive cases come into the school district. This can be especially difficult for the new generation of teens. As a mother of a 15 year old daughter, I can relate first hand to these challenges. Open communication is key and essential to processing your emotions and making sure others understand you as well. There are various ways to battle major depression and I feel that there isn’t ONE correct way to go about it. I want to re-visit some of these methods because it is important to remind yourself that you can overcome, no matter how long the process may be for you. It is an individual journey so be sure to celebrate your successes. In addition to a therapist or doctor, here are a few ways to cope:

Exercise

Try to take a 30 minute walk, dance, jog or bike if you choose. I know that most who are depressed do not feel like being active but if you start out with 10 minutes and perhaps even ask a friend to join you, it can be done. Once you get started, you will notice a difference in your mood. There are even a few yoga poses that can help relieve depression symptoms like downward-facing dog or the legs-up-the wall-poses. You can find all the poses on various websites. Simple breathing exercises can also be beneficial. I find that meditation wasn’t what I expected at first but over time, I started to look forward to quiet time to clear my mind and just “be”

Nutrition

Depression can truly affect appetite in different ways. One person can overeat and another can decide not to eat at all. If you find that it has affected your eating, try to be more mindful of getting the right nourishment. Even writing down what you crave and eat can be helpful. When you feel as if you don’t want to eat, try something light like a piece of fruit, which will give you some needed energy as well.

Don’t dwell or Ruminate

Try to identify any situations that have contributed to your depression but do not dwell on the past or thoughts of what has gone wrong. When you know whats got you feeling down and out, you can talk it through with a friend or a caring person in your life. Expressing your thoughts is a great way to relieve emotions and to receive some understanding. If you can find somebody you trust to lay your feelings out, it will help to relieve the stress. Ruminating or dwelling on negative situations or thoughts will only lead to more. Try switching each negative thought into something positive. Practicing gratitude may sound simple or feel silly but it works.

Be Creative

This can actually be a great time to explore new hobbies and interests like cooking, art, music, writing. There are so many free classes now, I am taking up one on becoming a yoga instructor although I am a beginner. I decided it would be great to learn all the poses and in turn, teach someone else. Emotional animals are great also. We have a new addition to our family, he’s a 4 month old Pekingese named Remington. We call him Remy. Do whatever it takes to soothe and bring your mind to ease. Keep in mind, some days will just be better than others. Taking a day or two to relax can be just what you need. Rest is so very important, most often a good nights rest or daytime nap can be all you need to re-focus. Depression takes time to heal but you are capable of conquering the negative thinking and enjoy days ahead.

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Be yourself. There is no one better.

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