Depression is a serious mental illness that is taking over this world. According to the World Health Organization, there are 300 million people around the globe who suffer from depression. To make it even scarier, 16.2 million adults in the US have experienced a depressive episode in the past year out of which 10.3 million ended up with severe mental impairment.
These numbers are terrifying, but the biggest issue is the treatment. The idea that a certain pill may alleviate your mental pain and give you back your life is truly appealing. But what happens when they don’t work? Are there any effective non-drug alternatives?
Of course, they are.
Fighting depression has been a constant part of my life for a long time. Luckily, these simple, yet powerful techniques have helped me overcome this mental condition. If you’re also struggling with this traumatic mental disorder, I recommend you follow these depression management tips.
However, bear in mind that this information is based on people’s personal experiences. It is not meant to disregard any medical advice.
Physical activity benefits the brain in more than one way. Firstly, working out stimulates the heart to produce more blood. And we all know how important blood is for our cognitive health. Secondly, working out triggers the release of the powerful chemical endorphin, also known as the natural stress-reliever. Last but not least, being physically active increases the growth of new brain cells, also known as neurogenesis.
2. TRAVEL MORE
Oftentimes, even though we are not always aware, the only thing that can help us cope with our thoughts is a little change of scenery.
Detaching from your toxic surroundings and taking a trip can have a very healing effect. You don’t need to book the most expensive ticket and fly to the most exotic destination. Getting away from all the negativity for a week can do wonders for you.
If you’ve been thinking about traveling solo for quite a long time, this is the sign that you needed. Do not be afraid of the world. This experience is guaranteed to boost your mood and help you manage your confusing thoughts.
This might sound ridiculous, especially to a person who is fighting depression, but dancing can do a lot more than you think. It is a fun activity, but it can also do wonders for your physical and mental health.
“How many of those who are ballroom dancing, doing the foxtrot, break dancing, or line dancing, realize that they are doing something positive for their bodies – and their brains? (Dancing) has such beneficial effects on the brain that it is now being used to treat people with Parkinson’s disease…” say psychologists at the Department of Neurobiology at Harvard University.
So, what are you waiting for? Twirl around. Do the twist. Shake a leg and dance whenever you feel the rhythm
4. CHANGE YOUR LIFESTYLE
I know that it seems easier said than done, but remember… I’ve been through the same hell that you’re going through. And here I am. Alive and well.
Living with depression is like being stuck in a deep, dark maze underground. You have to find a way to find the strength within you. Only then you will be able to pull yourself out.
Change your life. Start meditating. Reduce sugar intake and processed foods. Incorporate more nutritious foods in your diet. Breath in and breath out. Exercise. Surround yourself with positive, supporting people. Savor the moment. Be grateful that you are here.
5. TALK TO YOURSELF: WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY?
Whatever you do, please try to understand that depression is a chemical imbalance that takes a lot of work, patience, self-love and medical advice to overcome. It is a difficult mental state to be in and everyone has their own way of coping with it.
However, that doesn’t mean that you will never ever smile again. It is scary to realize that your happiness does depend on yourself only, but it is the truth. So, go ahead, ask yourself… What makes your soul flutter?
What makes you truly happy?