What to Do When Depressed

Knowing what to do when depressed is crucial when dealing with the problem. Taking these steps can help improve your mood and give you a fresh perspective.
Most of us feel low at some point of time or the other, and usually there is good reason for it. Among the different reasons for depression are illness, loneliness, unfortunate news about a friend or loved one, hormone changes or even the onset of winter. While depression is an illness that needs treatment, if you find your spirits drooping occasionally, there are a number of steps you can take to cheer yourself up. If you are being treated for depression, these methods can supplement the efforts of the depression medication. To beat the blues, you need to take action, which may be a bit of a challenge when you are depressed and feel like doing nothing. However, once you overcome this hurdle, the rest gets easier. One way to work through this initial debacle is to set small goals.

Tips on Handling Depression

Support is one of the most important tools to get you out of depression. For many, depression makes it difficult to reach out for help, but one should know that isolation and loneliness make depression worse. You may need to push yourself to do so, but pick up the phone and call a close friend or loved one. One of the best things to do when you feel depressed is to get out of the house and meet a close friend. If you can't do that, let a phone call to a loved one/friend be the first step, and ensure you tell the person what you're going through, even if it is difficult to explain. Do not be overcome by fear of what they will think, for they obviously care for you. If you don't know who to talk when you are depressed, consider a counselor, therapist, or clergy member

While the support of loved ones and friends is a big help, so is social activity. If you are feeling low, meeting and spending time with your friends can do wonders to uplift your mood. It serves as a good distraction for a couple of hours and is likely to leave you feeling better even after the meeting has ended. If you feel that your friends won't understand, then join a support group for depression. For many it is the ideal solution, because you around others who are dealing with the same problem. In fact, here you may be the one to encourage and support another.

Another important step is to take care of yourself. This includes doing the things you enjoy, being realistic about the number of things you can do, accepting help and leading a healthy life. At this point, if nothing seems fun, try your hand at an activity you used to enjoy, such as painting or sport. If you like the outdoors, go fishing or hiking for the day. Something simpler, like movies and music may do the trick too.

The best movies to watch when you are feeling depressed are light-hearted comedies that will make you laugh and lighten your spirits, like 'Ice Age I'. The best songs and music to listen to when depressed are cheery tunes. There are always a few songs that never fail to bring a smile to your face. Jason Mraz's 'I'm Yours' is one of my happy songs. Ensure you catch at least eight hours of shut eye, get some sunlight everyday and include a relaxing activity. Some other mood lifting activities are spending time in nature, take a long, hot bath, playing with your pet and making a list of all the things you like about yourself.

I hope you now know what to do when you feel depressed. While daily exercise, a healthy diet and trying to be as positive are important steps on your road of recovery, caring for the needs of others may also help. Involve yourself in volunteer work that will benefit people, animals or the environment.
By Marian K
Last Updated: 10/3/2011
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