Signs of Depression and How to Overcome It
Unlike in earlier years, you can hardly find someone who can take any discourse about mental health with a grain of salt. Because of the progressive movements made by various concerned groups, more people are now aware of the weight that this topic carries. Slowly but surely, societies are being successful in collectively debunking myths about mental disorders—and this remains true in the case of depression.
Depression, which is among the mood disorders identified by professionals, is a condition where an individual bears feelings of sadness, anger, and other heavy emotions that impede him from being fully productive and unlocking his true potential.
Compared to grief, which is a seemingly relative condition, depression is remarked with decreased levels of self-esteem and incidences of self-loathing. Although recovery can take an indefinite time for both, the latter can trigger more grave complications such as diabetes, cancer, or cardiovascular diseases than the former.
General Symptoms of Depression
Unlike other mental health conditions, depression cannot be easily identified with just a glance. For you to know if someone is suffering from depression, you have to assess the trend of behavior that he is projecting. Although the actual symptoms may vary on a case-to-case basis and may be interlinked with other ailments, here are the typical signs that most experts believe to be relevant to depression:
- feelings of hopelessness and pessimistic expression;
- feelings of anxiety and emptiness;
- mood swings ;
- lack of energy to do common passions and hobbies;
- frequent incidences of crying;
- lack of focus and concentration;
- easily experiencing fatigue;
- slower reaction time on basic stimuli;
- loss of appetite and sudden weight changes;
- suicidal thoughts;
- self-harm; and
- chronic physical pain that cannot be mediated by treatments.
Take note that self-diagnosis can bring no good. If you want to know if you are at risk of suffering from depression, it is best to see a clinical specialist who can administer tests and precisely assess the condition of your mental health.
Ways to Overcome Depression
If you found out that you are currently suffering from depression, you must fight any urge of giving up and work things out so you can beat it. Here are some tips on how you can overcome such a serious mental condition.
1. Acknowledge your current situation
The first thing that you have to do if you want to beat depression is to acknowledge that you are suffering from it. Although discourses about it are being normalized, it is completely normal if you feel the urge to deny experiencing such and claim that you are holistically stable. However, doing so can only make things worse.
If you bring up a facade that doesn’t match what you truly feel, the gap between the two can lead you to bottle up your real emotions until they get out of hand and cause you to have a meltdown. To avoid this, you must learn to acknowledge your current stance and remind yourself that this is just a phase and not a dead end.
2. Engage yourself in physical activities
One of the symptoms of depression includes low energy levels. And as much as it feels difficult to move around, the more persistent you have to be to go against the flow and make your body feel alive. If you take yourself on a brief walk outside, even if you don’t do it willfully at first, your extremities will eventually learn to adapt to such a habit.
The crucial point of this tip is to do it slowly but surely. You don’t have to lift weights immediately or do a full cardio workout–it will bring an unnecessary rush in your bodily system that may not work for you in a positive light. So by starting from small steps, ensure that you are giving your best effort to make some progress. Also, don’t hesitate to give yourself a good rest after a long day.
3. Set definite goals
As you try to go back on track, you may consider setting definite yet workable goals for yourself. It means that you must formulate a set of ambitions that you can put your mind into. It can be as simple as achieving a number of steps for a week or cleaning your space habitually. The key here is to set the ones that you think can be achievable and does not require you to completely change yourself overnight.
And when you are working to achieve these goals, you may want to be careful in comparing yourself to the progress made by others. You have to constantly remind yourself that you have a timeline different from theirs, and progress is progress no matter how big or small it appears to you.
4. Take lapses and relapses lightly
The journey to beat depression will not be an overnight process. It can take months or years, depending on the person battling it. That is why one of the most important reminders that you must take note of if you are confronting this fatal mental condition is to normalize lapses and relapses.
If you made a mistake today, you have to understand that it will not make you commit more mistakes by tomorrow and in the days to come. Also, if you happen to be making a good amount of progress and then suddenly find yourself going back to square one, you have to remove from your mind the idea that all your previous efforts have been wasted. Progress is never linear and there will be no deadlines that you should chase in terms of overcoming depression.
5. Eat a balanced diet
One of the most significant pieces of advice that most people fail to take note of when trying to overcome depression is to consume balanced meals daily. Proper nutrition is front and center in having a sound mind that can trigger you to function efficiently.
If you fail to give this aspect proper attention, then you may struggle to keep up with a refurbished routine that you are trying to adapt for yourself. Your physical health affects your mental health and vice versa, so you must not forget to take care of your body throughout the process.
Depression is not and will never be a joke. It has killed so many innocent and precious lives. That’s why if you are currently battling it, don’t be ashamed to reach out to the people you love, seek professional health, and never hesitate to give yourself all the care that you need along the way.