Depression is a common occurrence these days, and most experts say that almost all of us can suffer from it at some point in our lives. This should not surprise us given the pace of life in industrialized societies and the demanding culture that surrounds us, which rewards competitiveness and individualism. Sometimes we can feel like objects rather than subjects.
Depression is characterized by a sad mood and for a loss of the ability to feel interest and pleasure in those things that were once enjoyed. In addition, the person suffering from this disorder exhibits other negative symptoms such as fatigue, insomnia, problems with eating and concentrating.
What to do when you are depressed
Biological, educational or psychosocial factors often interact in the onset of depression, and how the person interprets the events happening around them has a great influence on the development of this disorder.
While in most cases you need to seek psychological support, it is possible to acquire a series of habits to fight depression and improve well-being, As long as the symptoms are not severe (in this case, one is unable to follow patterns of behavior that require a certain will). In this article, you will find a list of recommendations that will help you overcome this disorder and improve your quality of life.
1. Have healthy habits
Have healthy habits better emotional health is essential. Eating well and exercising well not only affects our body but also our mind.
Good nutrition helps maintain high energy levels and allows the body to function better. Likewise, the link between food and psychological aspects has made psychology experts interested in understanding how what we eat affects our feelings and emotions, as we explain in this article: “Psychology and Nutrition: The Importance of Emotional Eating”.
Exercise is also synonymous with health and has many psychological effects. The practice of sporting activitya promotes the release of endorphins and serotonin, among other neurochemicals. Endorphins produce a feeling of happiness and euphoria, and serotonin, as already mentioned, is linked to depressive and obsessive behaviors. Additionally, exercise helps reduce stress (which can be a cause of depression) and improve a person’s self-image.
2. Improve your emotional intelligence
Emotional intelligence skills are necessary to enjoy good emotional health, and many studies support this. This practice promotes self-knowledge, helps to understand the emotions that we already feel to regulate them, and allows master the skills to have healthy relationships with others.
Having high emotional intelligence positively affects different areas of people’s functioning, such as psychological well-being, dealing with stressful situations, social relationships or work, and therefore helps in fighting depression.
3. Follow an active social life
Studies on happiness have shown that healthy interpersonal relationships lead to more fulfilling lives. That’s why we need to surround ourselves with good friends, go to events, and practice the hobbies we love.
Don’t isolate yourself and go out to have a good time it improves our mood and gives meaning to our life, as well as having a close relationship with close friends and family members who care about us is a protective factor in depression. Also, if these are fun, they make us have a good time and improve our mood. Studies show that social support positively influences happiness and makes people less likely to suffer from depression.
4. Do what you love
People who connect to themselves and do what they love – that is, who feel fulfilled – are more resistant to depression. It’s hard not to be sad when you don’t like your job and you have to spend eight hours a day in this place; or when you want to study something with all your might but your family’s opinion seems to be more important than your own.
Connecting with your desires is essential if you want to avoid depression While it is true that in severe cases of this disorder, this is not enough, doing what you love allows you to have greater self-esteem. self and greater mental well-being.
5. Don’t compare yourself to others
In the world we live in, little is needed. To have the perfect body, to earn a lot of money, to be excellent in studies … These beliefs are, in many cases, irrational, as we may be able to stand out in some facets, but not necessarily in all.
Self-esteem is severely damaged if we continually compare ourselves to others because these expectations they can be too perfectionists and inaccessible and therefore can cause immense frustration: it is common to focus our attention on deficits rather than on the virtues that we possess. Additionally, while we all love to please others, investing a lot of time and energy in trying to please others can cause great psychological wear and tear and unnecessary stress. The important thing is to agree with yourself.
6. Accept and forgive yourself
Self-acceptance and self-forgiveness is one of the keys to avoiding depression, and how we interpret our failures is crucial to looking at life with optimism or pessimism. Since we are not perfect, it is possible to be wrong. Learn from negative experiences and accepting that sometimes you win and sometimes you lose is necessary to regain well-being. The past cannot be changed, but our perception of the past can.
7. Set realistic goals
One of the causes of depression may be not having vital goals because goals are motivating and help us stay on the move. If we look to the future and do not see clearly the way forward, we may experience an existential crisis.
for that you must have goals to fight for, As they give us life. However, goals should not be irrational, as they can create false and unattainable expectations and therefore negatively affect our well-being.
8. Live in the present
These goals should not only be long term goals, but also short term goals, which keeps us motivated throughout the process. Having future expectations (as long as they are realistic) is good, but learning to live in the present is also essential for overcoming depression.
It is common that when we live, we let ourselves be carried away by expectations and the rumination of the mind, losing us in these thoughts. This is why we must continually remind ourselves that we must remain in the here and now, connected with ourselves and with the reality around us at this precise moment.
Mindfulness is a useful tool to achieve this.
- If you want to know more about this practice, you can read this article: “What is mindfulness? The 7 answers to your questions”
9. Take care of your stress level
The phenomena of stress and depression are generally closely linked, but they are different sufferings that require specific treatments. Stress is one of the great evils of this century, and it is not surprising given the lifestyle of Western societies.
When it becomes chronic, depression can appear as one of its consequences or effects. Prevent stress it also helps prevent depression.
One type of stress that is very present in our day is stress at work.
- If you want to know how to reduce it, you can take a look at this article: “8 essential tips to reduce stress at work”
10. Seek professional help
The above sections can be helpful in dealing with depression, but sometimes it is impossible to get out of this sticky situation.
In such cases, psychological therapy becomes a good help to alleviate the situation, as this helps the patient discover the underlying causes of their worries and sadness; it allows you to learn to relax and to look at situations from a new perspective, and gives you the opportunity to develop better coping and problem-solving skills. In short, psychotherapy provides the tools to overcome depression and regain well-being.
The importance of putting yourself in good hands
If you think you are experiencing a situation similar to the one described in the previous lines and are looking for psychological support, the Mensalus Institute Psychology Center has a team of professionals who are experts in the treatment of depression and other disorders.
This center is located in Barcelona, where it offers face-to-face therapy sessions (although it also has the option of online therapy), always in an integrative approach. Depression differs from occasional sadness and causes great suffering, however it’s treatable if we put ourselves in good hands and we have received competent attention.
If you want more information about the Psychology Center of the Mensalus Institute, you can find the contact details at this link.