I am taking a break from my ‘How to Get What You Want’ series to bring you some tips on dealing with depression, based on my own personal experience. Despite the fact that I have a wonderful life and I practice my spiritual rituals every day, I still get depressed. This usually passes within a day or sometimes even an hour or two. I sometimes feel like a bit of a hypocrite writing this blog when I have moments of depression, so I thought I would be transparent, write about it and share the techniques that I use to deal with such episodes.
This too shall pass
I know from experience that things always get better and I find it helps to repeat to myself, “This too shall pass.”
I have noticed that I often feel low when I’m tired and that having a nap can work wonders. I get tired and then I can’t be bothered to do anything, so I sit around in my pyjamas watching TV and eating chocolate. I can’t be arsed to go out and have fun or do something constructive. Yesterday I felt like this. I had plans to go out in the evening but I suddenly felt really tired and low. I was going to cancel my plans but instead I had a nap, felt loads better, went out in the evening and had a lot of fun.
Do one small thing
One of the things that causes me to feel low is feeling overwhelmed with too much to do and so I don’t do anything. I usually find that doing one small thing changes my state and gets the momentum going for me to get other things done. This nearly always improves my mood and if it doesn’t this is a great time for acceptance.
It’s good to accept the feelings without judging them or analysing them. I often find my thoughts running away with me at times like this and I experience what is known as ‘analysis paralysis’. When I find my thoughts running away with me, I pray for help to release the obsession and hand over my problems to my higher power. I acknowledge the feelings and release the need to interact with them. If I am feeling low and all I want to do is sit on the sofa and eat chocolate, I know that doing one small thing will help. Sometimes however, even that is too much. In which case I accept that in this moment I can choose to sit on the sofa, watch crap TV and eat chocolate. The secret is to do it without guilt and without beating myself up for it.
A good way to stop the ‘analysis paralysis’ is simply to breathe. Just stop for a few moments and observe your breath going in and out. This will help you to feel more serene and grounded.
I find that playing lively, upbeat music is a great way to change state. If I can gather the enthusiasm to dance and sing or along, then that’s even better.
If you would like to share your own experience of dealing with depression or have any questions, please feel free to comment below.