Do you regularly deal with feeling sad and depressed? The holidays can certainly be a time of great depression for many. I struggle with depression at times. I would like to offer some tips for depression from my own experiences and observations. I am not handing out medical advice, but seeking to encourage those who are sad and depressed because of their life experiences.
First Tip for Depression – Focus on Others
Often sadness and depression come because we are so concerned with everything that is wrong with our lives. In reality, we are very self-centered. We are looking inward when we could be looking outward. From my experience, if I focus on helping others and not on my situation, I have relief from my sadness and depression. It really isn’t hard to find someone with a harder life than me and there is much value in serving others. It is good for them and good for us.
Second Tip for Depression – Focus on the Positive
There are always positives in our lives. It may take a little work to see them and appreciate them, but it is well worth it. I used to keep a daily journal that I used only to record positive things that happened to me during the day. I could always find something. I was thankful for rainbows and bunny rabbits among other more significant things. A positive attitude can really carry a person far. Sometimes I am sad about my situation in life, but if I really put things in perspective, I have a lot to be thankful for and my life is not so bad.
Third Tip for Depression – Put On a Happy Face
It is easy to carry around feeling sad and depressed so that the whole world knows it, but this can actually make the problem worse. People are turned off by a person that is sad and depressed all the time. Spending time with such a person is a hardship for most people. It can actually leave a sad person feeling more depressed and isolated. I know a woman who struggles with being depressed and lets everyone know it. Someone actually asked her why she didn’t just commit suicide. Fortunately, the woman would never consider such a thing, but it made me think about the negatives of sharing our sadness and depression with just anybody.
My thought is that it is best to have one or two people to confide in who are ready for the burden. A good friend, spouse, or family member will understand the need for you to share your problems and feelings. Hopefully they can share with you as well. When you are around others try to portray a positive attitude. This may draw more people to you and help you feel less isolated and depressed.
Fourth Tip for Depression – Don’t Neglect Your Health
It is easy to let our physical heath go as we focus on our mental health. If we are sad and depressed, exercise and good diet can go out the window. What we don’t realize or perhaps we just don’t care, is that this makes the situation worse. Eating bad and lack of exercise can lead to obesity and a world of other health problems. This leads to more depression. I heard on the news today that people who suffer from depression increase their risk of diabetes because they tend to neglect diet and exercise. Eating right and exercising can have a positive impact on our mood.
Fifth Tip for Depression – Take Back Your Life
Sometimes it takes a concerted effort to fight situational depression. I felt sad and depressed for a long time over a relationship that didn’t go the way I wanted. I had no life and not much to be happy about until I decided it was time for a change. Once I decided to reclaim my life, everything improved. I became much more social and involved with so many things to keep me busy and happy. I eventually went on to fulfill a dream of going to Bible College and received my master’s degree. All this happened because I made a decision to quit being sad and to start living my life.
If you are feeling sad and depressed, I hope my tips may be of help. I have been there and I have to remind myself of these things as well. I know they have worked for me and I hope they work for you. These tips are based on my own experiences and observations with feeling sad and depressed. Be well!