If you're depressed, you know how hard it can be to cope and feel better again. While there is no quick fix for depression, there are steps you can take that will make your future bright again. Here are four actions you can take right now to help your depression:
Exercise can help relieve some of the symptoms of depression. While you exercise, your nervous system releases several chemicals that make you feel good, including neurotransmitters and endorphins. While it's not a substitute for treatment, getting your body moving right now can help you feel better. Here are some less intense exercises to try:
- Walking around the neighborhood
2. Be social
Depression can give you the desire to isolate yourself. The more you isolate yourself, the more depressed you may become, creating a cycle that is hard to break. Doing one social activity right now will help your feelings of isolation. Here are some ideas:
- Visit or call a family member or friend. If that seems like too much, e-mail, text, or message them.
- Go to a club or group meeting for a hobby you're interested in.
- Sign up for volunteer work.
- Schedule an activity with friends or family.
3. Call a psychologist
If your depression has lasted a few weeks, or seems to be getting worse, call a psychologist right away. Making an appointment with a psychologist can help you get back on the right track. There is no shame in admitting that you can't do this alone, or that you may need professional help. Here are some of the ways a psychologist can help you:
- Conduct psychological evaluations to properly diagnose you
- Refer you to a psychiatrist who can prescribe medication based on your diagnosis
- Provide counseling and therapy
- Introduce you to support groups
4. Recognize cognitive distortions
As someone who is depressed, recognizing and combating cognitive distortions can help you. A cognitive distortion is a lie that your brain tells you when you're depressed. Here are examples of cognitive distortions and how to combat them:
Distortion: "I did poorly on this project at work. I'm going to get fired."
Counteract: "I'm a valuable employee and my boss knows I just made a mistake."
Distortion: "My date canceled. He's so rude and doesn't care about me."
Counteract: "It was rude to cancel on short notice, but he's considerate for letting me know and had a good explanation."
These are four actions you can take now to help your depression. Call a psychologist today--such as one from Carewright Clinical Services--if you need more information and help.