Find out how you can beat depression and live a happy life
We all know that depression can hit anyone. Once the signs of depression are present, it is up to us to do something about it and help ourselves smash depression. Some of these things you might not want to do (I know from experience haha), but it is up to you to decide if you are going to go the extra mile to improve your mental health.
Write out your thoughts in a journal or thought log
Writing out your thoughts can make a massive difference to your mental health. We all hate that voice at the back of our head feeding us with negative thoughts all day – so the challenge is to write this thought out and replace it with a positive one. Writing a journal is a way of ‘letting it all out’ and it helps you move on from the negative thoughts or events of the day.
I know that not everyone loves exercise, but we all need to do it. Studies show that exercise alone, for 30 minutes a day can make a 20% reduction in feelings of depression. Why wouldn’t you want to make yourself 20% happier? Not only will you have better emotions, but chances are your body will change also, which will make you even happier as you’ll look better than ever! The trick is to make the exercise fun. Maybe go to class with a friend, practice yoga, a walk or jog on the beach or in a park – anything that gets the blood pumping.
Drink if you want…but don’t drink too much
Alcohol has an impact on feelings of depression, but from my own experience I find that banning yourself from a drink with friends can have an effect that is even more detrimental to your mental health. If you like to have a drink on the weekend, then do it! Weekend benders on the booze are out; however a cheeky drink with a friend is totally cool.
Stay in touch with your friends and family
This is so important! When we are depressed we withdraw from our friends, family and social events. We actually need to do the opposite! Call that friend, go and hang out with your family, go on that Tinder date. Keep spending time with those that are close to you because they are the ones who will help you beat depression. You don’t even have to talk about depression – all you have to do is enjoy yourself for the time you are with them and this will have a massive positive effect on your mental health, without you even knowing it sometimes!
We all reach for the high sugar, super satisfying treats when we are depressed. Chocolate, junk food, chips and everything else are not what we should be basing our diet on. Get your diet right most of the time, and save the treats for the odd occasion – however often you feel comfortable with. Having a high nutrient, balanced diet will have a positive effect on how your body feels which will also help your mind – due to the mind-body connection.
Do something fun
Life can become monotonous at times and I know this adds to our depression. The trick here is to do something fun. You might think that you do lots of fun things in your week, but is there room for more? What is something that you enjoy doing, or want to do, but you haven’t had much ‘time’ for lately? Pick up that guitar, go throw that ball around in the park, book a holiday, sign up for that language class. Do something fun more often and your depression will be smashed!
Work, but don’t work too hard
Going to work when you are depressed will help you keep the routine and keep your sense of worth high, which is great. But the important thing is not to work too hard. Don’t stay back too often and there is definitely no need to bury yourself into your work to avoid your problems at home. You won’t have time for working too hard anyway now that you are going to be spending more time exercising, having fun and spending time with friends and family!
Having a laugh will instantly boost your endorphins and happiness levels. When we are depressed we are often pensive and thinking serious thoughts. Having a laugh will break the circuit and throw us into a state of looking on the bright side. Have a laugh at yourself too if you can. Watch a funny movie, put on some stand-up comedy, watch something funny on you-tube, and invite that friend over who always makes you laugh. Whatever it is, laugh hard and enjoy yourself.
Time to smash depression!
The actions above will help you on your journey to overcome depression (just like they did for me) but it is up to you to make the change to live a happy life. Feel free to comment if you have any of your own tips that may help, I would love to hear from you. Don’t forget to share this post to help your friends know that it is ok not to be ok, and that they too can beat depression.
About the author – Stef – Positive Living and Mental Health Advocate
Stef is a positive living and mental health advocate who dedicates much of his free time to improving his own and others mental health. Never miss a post by subscribing to the blog for free. Just pop your email address into the form on this page to claim your free membership!