Knowing how to fight depression is key for optimal mental health and wellbeing. Feeling good is so important to every aspect in your life that some may say it’s the most important thing in the world. But so many things can come along to bump your mood down a peg or two that it’s important to have systems in place to battle back and feel good again.
It’s important to note that these methods are meant to help combat negative feelings, which left unchecked could result in a state of depression. Clinical depression requires medical attention from your doctor, and may be too severe for these methods to work.
Talk to your doctor if you have sustained symptoms that don’t go away throughout the day, and over a period of several days. These include:
Feeling sad, empty, or unhappy.
Being exceptionally irritable or easily frustrated.
Losing interest in things you used to find pleasurable.
Feeling drained, without enough energy to get through simple daily tasks.
Lack of mental focus and concentration.
Intense feelings of anxiety, worry, and uneasiness.
A change in your appetite, whether a reduction in your appetite or an bigger desire for food.
Fixated thoughts of death and suicide.
Fight Depression Naturally with 21 Different Methods
1. Get More Exercise
It doesn’t really matter what exercise you choose to do, just as long as you do it regularly. Many health experts suggest exercising at least 2-3 times per week, but if it’s something you truly enjoy it would be hard to stop yourself from doing it everyday.
You don’t have to pick an exercise that asks for total exertion, and many find that they are well-served by simply taking a long walk each day, either brisk or leisurely.
Getting more exercise helps not only in the moment you are doing the exercise, but also over the long term. If you’re more fit you’ll be less likely to feel depressed, and more likely to stay on the positive side of the fence more of the time.
The Bright Side: Feeling down and exercising are pretty much mutually exclusive. If the exercise you do doesn’t make you feel good, try others until you find one you look forward to.
2. Eat Healthy Foods
Throughout human history malnourishment has been one of the major causes of death and disease, so it’s important that you’re getting the right food into your body so you can feel your best.
We live in an age where it’s not the easiest thing in the world to eat right, with fast food and junk food dominating grocery stores and city streets. But if you’re trying to battle depression you’ll need to focus on feeding your body and mind foods that nourish it and help it cope with modern stresses.
Common sense is all you need to eat right, with fruits and vegetables being the number one healthy foods to eat to feel great and get the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytonutrients your brain needs. Be sure you’re eating plenty of those each day and observe how it helps improve your state of mind.
The Bright Side: Food plays a huge part in how you feel, so eat foods that make you feel good not just when you’re eating them, but afterward as well.
3. Get Better Sleep
Sleeping well is a great way to feel your best and keep a positive mentality throughout the day. If you’ve been cutting corners on your sleep or getting irregular sleep, it could be contributing to your depressed state of mind.
The catch-22 is that depression can cause you to lose sleep, the very thing that would make you feel better. If you have trouble getting to sleep because of a racing mind, try using a natural sleep remedy to get back to a normal cycle.
Note that more sleep does not equal better sleep. Set up your sleeping quarters so they’re extra dark and quiet, and don’t push past natural sleep indicators when bedtime approaches.
The Bright Side: It’s hard to stay positive when you’re not getting enough sleep. Improper sleep can lead to irritability and moodiness. Get to bed early and wake up early for the best outlook on the day.
4. Schedule Fun Into Your Day
One way to get yourself into a funk is to pile a bunch of work on your to-do list until you can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Avoid adding too much to your plate by making sure there are fun things on the docket for each day. This includes taking time out to read a book you enjoy, watch your favorite television show or movie, or just hang out with friends or loved ones.
It restores balance to your life and keeps you motivated to accomplish the things you need to get done. You’ll be surprised at how your improved attitude makes your work seem more enjoyable.
The Bright Side: It’s no fun to look at a day full of nothing but work, toil, and tasks to complete. Always schedule in at least one fun thing to do. Psychologically it tells the brain that life isn’t just a plateful of spinach, you get to have dessert too!
5. Start a Hobby
It’s never too late to start a hobby if you don’t have one already, and it’s a very effective method for keeping your mind interested in something you enjoy. You can really lose yourself in a favorite hobby, and it puts your energy into a productive endeavor.
A hobby doesn’t have to be something classic like stamp collecting or crocheting, it can be anything that relaxes you or makes you feel good while doing it. More cerebral hobbies include writing, and playing a musical instrument, and if you wanted to involve your body more you can do yoga or take up hiking.
The sole factor when choosing a hobby is how it makes you feel. Pick one that gives you the best feelings both before, during, and after doing it.
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