Why ‘Just Coping’ with Depression is Okay and How to Do It
There’s no doubt about it, life is hard when suffering from depression. Activities, such as socializing or going to work, can become an enormous challenge. Feelings of loneliness and worthlessness can be overbearing at times.
It’s OK to just want to cope with depression. After all, medication and therapy can take time to work. There are many other things you can do to help improve your mental wellbeing.
So, here are 7 ways which can help you overcome depression.
1. Build A Support Network
You don’t have to cope with depression alone.
Are there people within your family you can reach out to? Do you have friends who you can rely on?
Forging new connections, and strengthening existing relationships, can do wonders for improving depression.
If it’s not possible to connect with friends or family, then online support groups can offer the chance to connect with others. Many of these groups have regular social gatherings to help form new friendships. Even connecting with others online is a good start.
2. Improve Your Diet
Doctors and scientists often debate how much your diet affects our mental health. However, many studies certainly show a correlation between nutrition and mental well being.
Diets high in sugar can aggravate mood disorders, particularly in men.
It’s also important to consider if you’re consuming enough essential nutrients.
Zinc has gained a lot of recognition as a natural antidepressant. You can help increase your Zinc intake by including wholegrains, nuts, red meat or shellfish in your diet.
Furthermore, additional studies show that omega-3 fatty acids (found in oily fish) have antidepressant effects in humans.
Other than the food we eat, you could consider taking supplements to help cope with your symptoms. CBD supplements, such as CBD flower, have risen in popularity as scientists believe that it has positive effects on serotonin levels in the brain.
Of course, always chat to your physician before making any changes to your diet.
3. Find Ways To Reduce Stress
When your body is under stress, you produce large amounts of the hormone called cortisol. In moderation, cortisol is harmless; however, people suffering from depression tend to have high levels of cortisol in their bloodstream.
You can reduce your stress by taking a walk for at least 30 minutes a day. This will help keep you physically active whilst breathing in a lot of fresh air.
You can play relaxing music to help calm your mind. Even guided meditations can reduce stress.
Try to find a new hobby, such as painting, learning a musical instrument, or photography as this will take your mind off stressful events in your life.
4. Improve Your Sleep Patterns
People with depression often report having poor quality of sleep. Approximately, 75% of adults with depression experience insomnia.
Improving your sleep quality will mean changing your habits. Try turning off electronic devices 1 hour before going to bed. Also, try reading a book, or listen to relaxing music before turning the lights out.
5. Stop Negative Thoughts
Excessive negative thinking is a major symptom of depression. It can be a vicious cycle that’s difficult to break out from, at least at first.
Thankfully, an abundance of self-help books, and online courses, are available to teach you how to change your thought patterns. Many people have experienced amazing breakthroughs on their journey to overcome depression by taking control of their thoughts.
Of course, psychiatric therapy, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), can tackle negative thinking and this is a common treatment offered to patients with depression.
6. Exercise Everyday
A 2019 study, by University of South Australia (UniSA) and MSH Medical School Hamburg in Germany, found that physical activity can reduce the severity of mental health disorders.
Outdoor exercise in particular can help improve concentration, increase alertness, reduce fatigue and combat stress. When exercising, your body produces large amounts of endorphins which results in a more positive sense of wellbeing.
Just 20-30 minutes everyday can help you feel more energized and engaged.
7. Take One Step At A Time
Let’s face it, reading numerous suggestions found online can be overwhelming at first.
But you can start by making one simple change each day.
Very soon you will look back and realize how far you’ve come and how much you’ve achieved.
So, give yourself compliments for being brave and taking bold steps to uplift yourself and beat depression.