Seven Ways to Manage Depression

Depression is a draining, debilitating illness that can suck the life out of you, making it very difficult to do what is necessary to overcome it. While taking the following steps can be difficult, they can help you to improve your outlook and begin healing.

Simple Ways To Manage Your Depression

Depression1. Set small goals for yourself. While “get dressed and eat breakfast” might seem overly simplistic, starting with small, attainable goals — and consistently reaching them — reminds you that you are capable. Small successes can give you the boost you need to accomplish bigger things, such as calling your therapist, or reaching out to a friend.

2. Treat yourself for accomplishing your goals. Rewards are essential to a good goal-setting system. They provide an incentive to reach your goals, which is hugely motivating. Rewards also give you something positive to focus your attention on and look forward to.

3. Ask your loved ones for help and advice. Your friends and family can be great resources of strength when you simply don’t have it. Whether you just need to talk or need some assistance with household tasks, childcare, or other responsibilities, trusted relatives and close friends may be able to help you pick up the slack when you simply don’t have the energy.

4. Be social, even when you don’t feel up to it. While you may not be able to face a loud, crowded club or a huge party, meeting a friend for coffee or taking your pooch to the dog park gives you a chance to connect with other people in low-key settings. Small doses of socializing not only serve to get you out of the house, but they can help you focus on something other than your negative thoughts and feelings.

ideas for coping with your depression

5. Consider joining an online or in-person support group. Local churches or health organizations are good resources for finding support groups. Discussing your issues with those who are experiencing the same feelings can be immensely helpful. Not only will you find that you aren’t alone, but you may pick up new ideas for coping with your depression while sharing your own coping mechanisms.

6. Do not expect perfection from yourself. If your expectations are too high, you are doomed to fail, worsening the feelings of guilt and helplessness brought on by depression. Instead, give yourself some wiggle room and accept you will not always make the best decisions, say the right things, or act in the right way, and you certainly cannot please everyone.

7. Avoid toxic, negative people. There is nothing worse than seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, only to have your feelings spiral downward again due to the comments or attitudes of others. If certain people consistently say or do things that you find problematic, it may be best to distance yourself from those people as you recover, at least temporarily.

Depression is a serious, debilitating disorder, but with these steps and professional assistance from your physician, therapist or psychiatrist, you can recover and find the good in life once more.