Beyond Sadness: How to Deal with Depression
Everyone knows what it’s like to be sad. Sadness is a normal response to certain events. For example, the death of a family member (including a pet) naturally causes sadness in the survivors.
It’s a sadness that might never entirely go away. But sadness fades with time, perhaps revisited on anniversaries. From their experience with sadness, some people believe they have an understanding of depression—“It’s like being really sad.” An attempt to empathize, perhaps, this phrase can actually be hurtful to those suffering from depression.
Depression involves sadness, a profound sadness at times. While events may occur that influence the depth of depression, depression doesn’t fade with the passing of an event. It lasts for weeks, months, years, or even lifetimes, oblivious to the anniversary of any event. It’s much more than “being really sad.”
Tips on How to Deal with Your Own Depression
One big tip has already been provided. Understand that some people, maybe loved ones, don’t really understand depression. Would you understand it, were it not for your first-hand experience with it? Don’t let comments made by those who don’t fully grasp depression influence your thoughts, decisions, and actions. Just let their comments go. (Forgive them.)
In the depths of depression, it’s ever so difficult to muster the will to do a lot of things. Again, those without experience with depression may think it’s easy: “Just get up, get out there, and be happy . . .” Ouch. Again, some might not appreciate or accept that you endure something they don’t understand. Don’t blame yourself if the “help” offered by some isn’t really helpful.
If your life is going to improve, it’s up to you. Nobody asked for depression, but if it’s found you, it’s up to you to seek a way to manage it so you can find some peace and pleasure in life. You may need to be more self-reliant than others when it comes to finding comfort in a stressful world. In the end, if you do nothing, nothing will change.
- Do something to get your heart pumping for a few minutes. If not a jog around the block, maybe dancing in your living room or jumping jacks. Getting your blood moving helps you feel better and diminish pain.
- If more vigorous exercise isn’t your thing, take the dog for a walk around the block. No dog? Take yourself for a walk around the block.
- You might try yoga or stretching exercises in your living room. These can also release beneficial body chemicals that will help soothe mind-body stress.
- At the end of the day, drink a warm cup of chamomile tea. It may help you to relax or sleep better if you are having sleeping problems.
- Have you ever tried aromatherapy? A variety of oil extracts or infusions help alleviate stress and depression. Oils of jasmine, lemon, and sandalwood are known to offer benefits. Other helpful scents are orange trees and oranges.
- Try doing the things you liked to do when you were feeling better. It might be hard to motivate yourself to get “back into the groove” of something you once enjoyed, but if you view it as therapy, you might gain a new appreciation for it.
Helping Another Deal with Depression
If you want to help a friend or relative who is suffering from depression, try to understand and accept that depression is more than “the blues” and avoid judging or offering well-meant but unhelpful or hurtful solutions. Rather than telling your friend or family member to “Get help,” understand that some of the best help available might come from you. Show a little love and treat your depressed friend like you treat everyone else. THAT can do wonders.
If you or someone you know dealing with depression. Contact one of our Counselors. Our therapists in Houston can help you or your loved one recover. To get started now give us a call to schedule an appointment at 832-559-2622 or schedule an appointment online. We look forward to help you!
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