Depression: Things to Remember | Mental Health
Updated: Jun 9, 2018
I know it can be hard when you're depressed, you're drained of energy and don't want to do anything. You feel like you're drowning and there's nothing in the world that can save you. You feel like you can't turn to anyone because you believe you're a burden on others but what if I told you that's not true? That you can feel better but it will take a lot out of you in order to do so. That even if you're at rock bottom, and the light is so far away, so out of reach, you can still make it. That there are people out there who are willing to listen to you and help you out. When I went through the lowest point in my life between year 10 and 11, I picked up the following tips. There isn't a quick fix to dealing with depression but a lot of patience and self love!!!
Acknowledge your feelings Not everyone knows they have depression but they know they feel different. Are you feeling any of the following symptoms: - Lasting feeling of unhappiness - Loss of interest in activities and/or hobbies - Feeling anxious - Feeling of worthlessness and/or loneliness - Constant fatigue and decreased energy - Increased Irritability and/or restlessness - Change in sleeping pattern (sleeping more often or loss of sleep) - Loss of appetite or increased appetite - Thoughts of suicide* The symptoms of depression range from person to person. For me, when I first realised I had (extreme) depression, I was suicidal and I had really bad anxiety (and serious stress). Having all 3 is hell; anxiety makes you care, depression makes you not care and feeling suicidal makes you not want to live/exist any longer. If you are feeling any of these symptoms, go to your GP and/or see a therapist for professional diagnosis.
Accept that you need help Accepting that you're hurting is probably the first step to recovery as you've realised that something is wrong and you've acknowledged that you want to change it (even though you won't necessarily realise it at this point). Not everyone can do it alone and that's okay. You don't realise how strong you are for even taking this step. Remember, there isn't an overnight fix for this, its a slow process.
Talk to someone Bottling up your emotions is the worst thing you can do for yourself. Your brain might tell you that nobody wants to listen to you but that's not true. There are so many people who want to help you!!! Getting your feelings out to someone is such a huge relief, as if a huge weight has been lifted off your shoulders. There are so many people you can talk to: your parents, siblings, friends, therapist, GP, ChildLine, Samaritans and myself! Don't hold back, let your feelings and thoughts out, it'll help you tons!
Positive mind, positive change Believe that you can get better, you can recover, that your circumstances will change. You need to change the way you think in order to recover. No it isn't going to be easy but I guarantee you that it will be worth it. Give yourself small compliments everyday. "You look good today", "you have a lovely smile", "you have beautiful eyes", "you've done well today", "I am proud of you". At first you won't believe in the compliments but eventually you will and it'll start making a difference. Positive affirmations will allow your mood to lift. Choose your words carefully because they have a huge impact on you no matter how difficult it may be to believe them.
You will have bad days but don't drown in them Recovery is a difficult journey but it is 100% worth it. You are going to have bad days and slip ups every now and again and that's okay. We are humans, we're not meant to be perfect. It may feel like you've ended up at square 1 all over again and no matter how hard you try, nothing seems to be working. What you've failed to realise is that you've made progress because you've made it this far. I have bad days and I feel like I'm back at rock bottom with literally nothing to hold on to but deep down I know this isn't true. Why? Because I know I don't want to be stuck here so I will allow myself to have a bad day and do anything I need to in order to distract myself and keep that feeling at bay. One way I do this is by watching my favourite TV shows and it does help me. I don't let myself too many bad days if I can help it.
Recovery will not happen overnight, it’s a slow battle No one said it would be easy. It's going to take everything you've got but in in the end, you'll look back and admire how strong you are because of how far you've come. This is going to be a long and slow battle with yourself and there isn't a quick fix. Take it one step at a time, one day at a time, slow and steady.
Become your own best friend I've had a love-hate relationship with myself for years, more hate than love I should say. This impacted everything I did, my thought cycle, bad days, relationships around me and basically everything else so it really didn't help my depression. Learning to love myself in the process was very difficult because I would have to try so hard to convince myself. The more you practice, the better you'll get and the easier it will become. It's so important to be your own best friend and it took me years to learn this. The people around us can only do so much for us. Everyone can cheer you on, hold your hand and stand by your side through your toughest days but this is a battle that you have to fight; only you can take the first step and continue on.
*If you are suicidal, you should see someone as soon as possible! You don't want to act on those feelings. There's no returning once you are gone. You don't really want to die, but you want the pain to be gone and there are ways to deal with it but the worst thing you can do is act on a temporary feeling. There's so much out there for you to experience, so many places to see and people to meet, foods to taste, music to listen to. There is a way out and you can get their -patience and self-love.