How to Overcome Depression

If you suffer from depression, then before you look at any other solutions, hints, or tips online, you should seek the help of a medical professional. Depression is a serious and sometimes debilitating illness, and no one writing for this website (or most others) is qualified to provide medical advice.

That being said, we do have some tips about how to overcome depression. Consult with your doctor regarding the appropriateness of these action steps. Managing depression can sometimes require additional help. We encourage you to reach out to other whenever you feel overwhelmed.

  1. Understanding the reason for your depression may be the first place to begin your recovery journey. Think about when you last were truly happy. What were your circumstances then? What did you enjoy doing at that time? What has changed? If you cannot go back, what can you do to move yourself forward again?
  2. Why not try acting the way you wished you felt and doing what you used to enjoy? If you wait for the proper feelings to motivate you, that time may never happen. In fact, feelings should follow your decisions, not determine them. The amazing reality is that your feelings of pleasure tend to line up quite nicely after you experience normally enjoyable activities. Straighten your posture, smile, establish eye contact with the world, and act the way a happy person acts. It will actually make a difference.
  3. Some people suffer from depression when the balance of work and pleasure becomes uneven in their lives. They may feel totally overwhelmed by work responsibilities and shut down emotionally as a coping mechanism. Conversely, too much free time and idleness is also unhealthy for you emotionally. Restoring your life to a more balanced flow of meaningful activities and free time can relieve depressed feelings.
  4. How to Overcome Depression

    How to Overcome Depression

    Sometimes the solution for depression is as simple as starting an exercise program. Depressed people lose all their energy. They barely move through their days, doing as little as possible to keep going. The reality is that movement increases the energy that you need, and increased energy feels really good. Even though it may be the last thing your feelings tell you to do, go for a walk each day or join a gym program. Just get moving and get your energy levels back up.

  5. Doctors know that some medications can cause depression. This may be a good time for a complete physical and a serious talk with your doctor. Is it possible that some medication you are currently taking is responsible for your sadness? There are almost always other drugs available that can be substituted for the ones that are giving you problems.
  6. Other physical conditions such as hormone imbalances can also set your emotions on a downhill spiral. While you are at the doctor’s, talk frankly with him about your feelings of depression. This is not the time to hide your problem or be embarrassed. Your doctor can prescribe medication that can help put you back on a solid footing emotionally.
  7. There are occasions when it may be most appropriate to see a professional who can help you understand the root of your depression and how to overcome those negative feelings. Emotional health specialists see people with this concern all the time. They are trained to help you out of the hopeless hole in which you find yourself. Their counseling can uncover patterns of negative thinking and give you tools to become a more positive person.
  8. The average happy person has between 50-100 activities of daily living that he or she enjoys. For the depressed person, the number is very small and usually shrinking. To change this, force yourself to at least try new activities and areas of interest, scheduling them in if necessary. Look for intellectual, social, and cultural possibilities that may be constructive or simply pleasurable.
  9. It is important for all of us to have various levels of friendships and other relationships that are active and alive. Depressed people tend to shrink back from others and then think that no one cares about them. If you find yourself in this trap, it’s time to step out and increase your opportunities for meeting others. Caring about others helps put our own issues in balance and gets our minds off ourselves and our needs.
  10. Do you have personal problems that have caused consequences that may have triggered your depression? Maybe it’s time to deal with the bad choices and habits that drive you mentally into these dark discouraging places. It is not necessary to fix everything at once. Taking small positive steps will give you a sense of accomplishment and move you in the right direction.

While there are many root causes for depression, there are also many ways to manage depression and the feelings of hopelessness and despair. Establishing realistic expectations, replacing negative thought patterns with positive attitudes, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and getting professional help if necessary are all important tools for your recovery. Don’t wait for your feelings to give you permission. You will only start to feel better as you actively pursue your positive future. There is a place of happiness and contentment. You had it once, and you can find it again.

For further details about how to overcome depression, check out:

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