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8 Tips for People Living with Depression

Depression is a mood disorder that may lead to perpetually feeling sad and disinterested in life.[1] If you are worried about your mental health, it’s important to remind yourself that you’re far from alone.

According to scientific research, 7.1% of adults have experienced one episode of depression in their lifetimes. [2] Check out these practical tips on how to live with depression. 

Get Involved With Philanthropy

Helping other people not only is the right thing to do, it can have a positive impact on your mental health. Studies have shown that engaging in acts of giving or charity can actually lower your levels of stress and lead to less depression. [3] Volunteer at your local soup kitchen or sign up to clean a park or beach. Take this as a chance to really step out and get to know your community. Do it now and feel great about helping out.

Get Professional Help

In order to get a handle on your depression, you should seek treatment from a psychologist or psychiatrist. If you’re struggling with negative thought patterns, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can assist you in identifying the root cause of the problem.[4] With the help of a psychologist or psychiatrist, you can find a way to manage your mental health issues.

Clean Your Home and Declutter

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, you should tackle your to-do list and declutter your home. Having an overly messy room or home can lead to heightened levels of stress and anxiety. [5] By cleaning your room and throwing away all those things you no longer need, you can regain a sense of control over your life.

Create A Schedule For Yourself

When you’re in between jobs or relationships, it can get pretty easy to start feeling aimless and hopeless. Without structure, you can have increased feelings of stress, poor eating habits, and issues sleeping. [6] On top of that, one of depression’s symptoms can make it harder to stick to a daily schedule due to fatigue and lethargy. [7]  Get a whiteboard or planner and stick to a daily schedule. Start off your day with a peaceful walk and then move on to tackling what you need to do.

Improve Your Sleep

Having sleep issues can lead to depression. [8] There are numerous ways to improve your sleep. Here are a few[9]:

  •  Get plenty of exercise.
  •  Limit the amount of technology you use at night.
  •  Avoid caffeine consumption or don’t consume it later in the day.

Exercise Regularly

When you exercise, your brain releases endorphins —a chemical that can make you feel better. [10] If you’re just getting into exercise and are unsure about what to do, reach out to friends who are more experienced and see which workout routines and classes they enjoy.

Eat Better

You should be mindful of how what you’re eating can affect your mood. It’s recommended that you eat foods that are high in fiber and rich with omega-3s, selenium, and vitamin D. [11] Improving your diet can also be a fun social activity!  Invite friends over to a dinner party once you’ve perfected a delicious dish.

Reach Out To People

Being depressed can make you socially isolated. On the flip side, being socially isolated may also lead to depression. [12] Do you feel lonely? Sign up for an activity to meet new people or reach out to your social network. You never know which one of your old friends is also waiting for someone to reach out.

Don’t Give Up Hope

If you want to fight depression,  it’s important to have a positive attitude and never give up hope for things to get better. Stay open minded to new treatments, therapies, and strategies.

[1] https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/depression/symptoms-causes/syc-20356007

[2] https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/major-depression.shtml

[3] https://health.clevelandclinic.org/why-giving-is-good-for-your-health/

[4] https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-cognitive-behavior-therapy-2795747

[5] https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/high-octane-women/201203/why-mess-causes-stress-8-reasons-8-remedies

[6] https://www.nm.org/healthbeat/healthy-tips/health-benefits-of-having-a-routine

[7] https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/recognizing-symptoms

[8] https://www.sleepfoundation.org/mental-health/depression-and-sleep

[9] https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/17-tips-to-sleep-better

[10] https://www.helpguide.org/articles/healthy-living/the-mental-health-benefits-of-exercise.htm

[11] https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/diet#Foods-that-Might-Help

[12] https://publichealth.tulane.edu/blog/effects-of-social-isolation-on-mental-health/

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