When you’re depressed, no matter how hard you try or fight, enough never seems like enough. Sometimes the things that help end up being the hardest to do.
Depression is so much more than just an emotion or a feeling. Depression is not an aesthetic. Depression is not a trend or a funny meme. Educate yourself and educate others. Continuously check on your friends and your family. Living with a mental illness is an involuntary full-time job, but we love and care for ourselves just the same. You are so much stronger than you think.
To close out Mental Health Awareness Month, we wanted to share a guide to help you on the road to recovery.
Prioritize All Forms of Self-Care
Take time to put yourself first. Start by eating a better diet. No ingredient can cure something as powerful as a mental illness, but eating healthy is crucial for your overall well-being. Omega-3 fatty acids are great to add to your diet as they play a major role in stabilizing your mood. If you feel yourself getting stressed or overwhelmed, remind yourself to breathe. Do things at your own pace. Exercise, maybe take a dance class, or even just walk around your neighborhood. Strive to get around eight hours of sleep, and go to bed at a reasonable time. All of these small habits add up in a big way.
Squash Negative Thinking
When you start overthinking or worrying, it’s important to remind yourself that this is a symptom of depression. Examine what’s making you feel this way and take charge. Things may feel hopeless in the moment, but they will pass.
Lean on Friends and Family
The people around you make all the difference in the world. If you’re constantly surrounded by strong negative energy, that’s what you will carry with you. Make sure you’re in the company of people who continue to lift you up and never allow you to feel abandoned or alone. Stay connected. Try keeping up with social activities, and spend quality time with family. Here are creative ways to keep in touch with long-distance members in your circle.
If you’ve taken step after step and find your depression getting worse, do not feel ashamed to reach out for help. You should never have to fight your battles alone. Counseling can provide a long-term solution to a lifetime struggle.
If the darkness becomes too heavy, be sure to contact a professional psychologist who can help support you through this process. If you are struggling with depression or having suicidal thoughts, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.
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