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How to deal with depression

Updated on September 14, 2014

Fighting depression

You've been to the doctor's, you've been hospitalized, you've been on medication, you spoke to a therapist or a friend about it, but it all just doesn't seem to work. Depression is still there and it keeps coming back, or it never left. Here are some of the things that can help you treat it, as they helped and are still helping me.

For me, going on therapy is important. Talking to a psychologist/psychiatrist makes me feel better. Well, most of the times. Some of the times I think they don't understand me either. Sometimes I think they're trying to give me suggestions that I know wouldn't work. Of course, finding the right therapist can also be difficult. And even though I've learned new ways of fighting depression from therapy, I would never go if it wasn't free. So what to do if it really isn't free or it's out of reach for you?

First, you can start by writing down your feelings. How do you feel right now? Do you feel suicidal? Now, try writing your thoughts. What are the thoughts? Are you thinking low of yourself, thinking that you deserved to feel this way? Or you think you didn't deserve it but you just can't take it anymore and want to end it all right now? Every time these feelings and thoughts conquer your body and mind, try to remember that maybe you're not the only one in the world feeling like that. Don't feel guilty for having suicidal thoughts. They're just thoughts, nothing else. Try to figure out what you're good at, what you like to do.

I for example like to write. And this is why I'm writing this. This is my way of dealing with depression right this moment. I want to help you, but I want to help myself at the same time. Can you paint? Do it! Painting is one of the effective ways of dealing with depression. Even when you're feeling angry or sad, painting can help you deal with it, express your feelings. How about reading? Go to a library and get some books on topics that you like, whether it's history, culture, geography, language. Reading can send your mind to a whole different universe (literally, if you're into astronomy), and it's a good way of getting rid of anxieties that you may have. Don't read books with heavy topics such as wars, poverty or diseases. You can come back to those once you're feeling better.

Go for a walk. Walking is much healthier than taking a bus or metro ride, or even car. I know it can be particularly hard to even get out of bed when in state of deep depression, but try to find something that would motivate you. Think of the food you like, chocolate for example. You know you like a chocolate that only that one store has. Take a walk to that store. And then go see what's around the next block. And then maybe the next one. Visit a lake or a river, or ocean. It's okay to be all by yourself. You're taking a time to yourself, to recuperate.

Are you tired of being lonely? Haven't been in a relationship for a long time (or ever)? Go out and try to meet some people. Talk to people you find attractive and think they're interesting. I know it's easier said than done and that relationships don't come that easy, but it will happen eventually. But try not to make that other person be the missing part. Sure, nobody likes to be lonely. But there are things you have to work on yourself first in order to truly be happy with another person.

Why don't you travel? Traveling can get your mind off of negative feelings and thoughts just like that. Maybe it's just time you change your surroundings. See new things. Experience something you thought would never do. Don't be afraid of trying new things.

Are you worried about losing your job? Have you already lost your job? Is your rent too high? Are you not doing good in school? When I have thoughts like these, I just put myself into an age long before we even had schools, when the primary fear was to be eaten by a wild animal. When the first thought in the morning was how to catch the next deer, or buffalo. Remember, depression is caused by worrying. Most of the worries we as humans have today are the worries we invented ourselves. When somebody's pessimistic about life, yours or their own, think of it as their problem, not yours. Your main problem should be catching that deer.

Facing real problem.
Facing real problem.

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