What are 3 Strategies for Coping With Depression?

Depression is a debilitating mental disorder that affects millions of people worldwide. It can be caused by a chemical imbalance in the body, genetic predisposition to mental illness, disappointment, grief, or any other negative life changes. Depression can impact every area of your life, including your physical, emotional, mental, and relational health. If you are depressed, you likely struggle to find the energy you need to get through the day or isolate yourself from others. Common emotional side effects include severe sadness, despair, hopelessness, helplessness, emptiness, and lack of pleasure. In addition, depression causes physical symptoms such as changes in appetite or sleep patterns, headaches, and fatigue. Depression can prevent you from functioning effectively in your everyday life and it can be difficult to pull yourself out of the darkness.  Coping with depression can seem like an insurmountable challenge, but there are effective strategies that you can use. Here are three strategies to help you combat depression and regain a sense of normalcy.

Practice Self-Care

Depression diminishes motivation and energy, so you may find yourself struggling to complete everyday tasks and responsibilities. Sometimes even taking a shower or maintaining your hygiene can be an overwhelming task when you’re stuck in the lows of depression. You may have the urge not to eat or sleep or may go in the opposite direction by eating and sleeping excessively. Your depression is unique to you and your recovery will be as well. The first strategy is to ensure that you are practicing self-care. You may have to force yourself to do so, but eat small meals throughout the day, drink plenty of fluids, take a relaxing bath, and even try to get a small amount of exercise. Exercise is usually the last thing on your mind when depressed, but it is scientifically proven to release endorphins in the body which improve mood. Your body and mind need all the sustenance and self-care they can get to help you fight back against depression.

Connect with Supportive People

When depressed, your nervous system and mind insist that you isolate yourself from others. It is important to resist the urge to do so and stay in contact with people who can help improve your mood or offer support in your time of need. Social support can provide you with the necessary motivation to continue on the path to recovery. It may seem like no one understands what you are going through but it is still beneficial to have meaningful relationships that help you see that life is worth living. Finding a depression support group is also helpful because you can connect with people who are struggling with similar aspects in their own lives. It is essential to have close loved ones or friends who hold you accountable and provide a safe place for you to disclose your struggle. You do not have to navigate healing alone.

Use Positive Self-Talk

Symptoms of depression are exacerbated by having a negative mindset, but when life seems hopeless, you may not feel like you have a choice in your thought patterns. Your thought life impacts your immediate environment and perception of the world around you. If you tell yourself that you are worthless, then your mind will begin to believe you are. This is why it is important to impede depression’s ability to make you feel bad about yourself. Identify negative thoughts and cognitive distortions so that you can begin nourishing your mind and soul with healthy, positive content. Remind yourself that you have value, you are worthy, and you do matter.

To become more self-aware of your negativity spiral, begin logging your thoughts in a journal and write a contrasting statement for each negative thing you tell yourself. You may have a recurring intrusive thought such as, “I never do anything right, everything I touch gets ruined.” Write your negative self-talk in your journal and counteract it with positivity by writing “There are many things that I excel in and I am worthy even though I make mistakes.”

Next Steps

I know your situation may seem hopeless, but there is a life waiting for you on the other side of depression.  At New Vision Counseling and Consulting, we understand the darkness of depression and want to help you restore the light in your life. Each of our therapists is trained in helping you through your depression and can help you personalize a counseling experience that is right for you. Curious about our counseling process? Call today for more information and begin your healing journey. A client care specialist is available by calling (405) 921-7776. We can’t wait to hear from you!


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Oklahoma City, OK 73120


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