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Depression, in its early phase, is a result of a long-lasting dissatisfaction with our personal, social, or professional aspects of life. It is also a consequence of frequent daily stress and the inability to find solutions for different, usually unrealistic, inner fears and doubts. In a word, depression appears as a reflection of the problems in our inner selves.
The problem is, of course, the feeling of an unchangeable reality and common misconceptions about it, which can lead to other more serious mental disorders and illnesses. People usually ignore the problems or sweep them under the carpet.
However, the overall feeling of apathy and disinterest is multiplied when our problems are unrealistic and imaginary. A huge mistake is to pretend as if they do or did not exist.
Depression comes slowly. Although it is usually treated with medications and counseling, we can train ourselves to become mentally strong and protect ourselves( well, from ourselves) using simple natural ways and solutions.
One of the first signs of depression is a loss of appetite. One does not need to eat, sometimes not even to drink. Although sometimes eating can be very hard and also trigger other negative emotions, one needs to eat. We need the energy from the food, and particular food can help boost positive feelings and activate those happy hormones.
Eating healthy and regular meals will give us the energy that has to be used somehow, and this leads us to another important habit that would help us become mentally strong and healthy as well – exercising.
When things start going down, any form of physical activity is good to boost the mood. Whether it is a short walk, in the morning or the evening, yoga, bicycling, simple workout at home, you will need to spend the calories from the food, and you will distract your mind from the problems.
Exercising will also help you sleep better because one of the common signs of depression is also a lack of sleep. When your body is tired, you will need to rest, which is entirely natural. If you still cannot sleep – try reading a book or listening positive, relaxing, and meditative music.
When depression is taking over you, engaging in any activity is beneficial for you. A depressed person quickly loses interest in day-to-day activities, including everyday activities such as washing the dishes, vacuuming, cleaning, not to mention other activities that involve concentration and focus.
No trick could help you with this; the truth is that you must not allow yourself to put your life on standby.
# Spending time with other people
Starting from basic habits and responsibilities, developing new interests, or starting a new hobby is an important step in neutralizing negative atmosphere, thoughts, and feelings. Find something that will help you relax – sometimes spending time with other people, with whom you can share your thoughts and problems, is an adequate relaxing atmosphere.
Apart from sharing your problems, you should be with people who understand you, but who are positive. Having support in such a delicate state of mind is crucial. When meeting your friends, do not go “dressed in your depression”.
# Dressing up
Although it seems like a trivial thing, is a way to keep your mind focused on the present day. Studies showed that people feel better when they are dressed nicely and when they are satisfied with their appearance.
Although this will not solve your problems, looking beautiful and keeping your body healthy can help you concentrate on the activity that is far from triggering negative feelings. Even if you are not in a mood for improving your physical appearance, dressing up is a relaxing activity, just let yourself enjoy it.
# Start volunteering
To keep pace with the present, start volunteering, for instance. Group activities will make you interested in social and cultural life. Volunteering can show you that you can make a difference, to change something, and help someone – thus able to help yourself as well. People who volunteer are eager to help and they are usually very positive.
Being around positive people will boost your mood and influence your perception of life.
On the other hand, one should avoid stressful situations and people who are negative. The negative atmosphere will only draw you deeper into your problems and keep you focused on your fears, insecurity, and so on. To solve your problems you need to forget them.
Negative thoughts and situations will only prolong your problems. Worrying will not do you good either. Do your best to avoid spending time with people who can trigger deeper negative emotions.
# Support groups
Some people also highly appreciate and value support groups and with a good reason. Every person is prone to thinking that his or her problems are the biggest and that no one else has experienced anything similar to the current situation they are in. This feeling and thinking is normal; however, engaging in a support group can undoubtedly change your mind.
We think that we are alone in our problems, and we are those that need to solve them, but sharing your experience with others can help you find the solution in many ways.
Is an excellent way to clear your mind. You do not have to be an active meditation practitioner or to engage in some sort of meditative teaching. Keeping your eyes closed for a minute or two and thinking about the person you love is a way of meditation as well.
Recalling some beautiful experiences, on the time you spent in nature, trying to imagine the sound of water, rain or wind, simply sitting on the sun, or thinking about beautiful sceneries is a great way to relax. Meditation will help you overcome the grief.
The most important thing is finding the source of your depression. This is the hardest and the most unpleasant part of the healing process, but if you do not find the cause, you will not be able to find the solution.
Hall, D. (2013). Overcoming Depression: How to Recognize, Understand and Overcame Depression and Anxiety Naturally.
McCance, N. (2013). 52 Ways to Beat Depression Naturally. Indigo River Publishing.
Images credit: shutterstock.com
Last article update: 2/23/2019