Overcoming depression may sometimes feel impossible. If you’re feeling unmotivated, helpless, and a prisoner of your negative emotions, here are 13 simple ways you can try to lift the dark cloud of depression.
In this article:
- Let Go of the Past
- Surround Yourself With Positive People
- Take It One Step at a Time
- Look at Things From a Different Perspective
- Make Sure You’re Sleeping Well
- Practice Positive Self-Talk
- Listen to Uplifting Music
- Have a Gratitude Journal
- Express Your Feelings Through Art
- Have a Daily To-Do List
- Practice Meditation Daily
- Don’t Be Afraid to Talk to a Specialist
Overcoming Depression: 13 Simple Ways to Try
1. Let Go of the Past
A painful past can be a mental prison. The trauma, rejection, and other negative feelings you encountered can further feed your feelings of depression.
Rather than accept the past as a failure, you can spin how you look at it. For example, try to discover what you’ve learned from those experiences rather than focus on the pain you’ve felt during that time.
Overcoming depression is easier said than done, especially if you have a lot of baggage from the past. Learning to forgive and forget may be the start of your journey towards healing and self-discovery.
2. Surround Yourself with Positive People
You may not notice it, but people are an emotional sponge that soaks up their surroundings. They say that birds of the same feather flock together, so be sure to hang out with good ones.
Surround yourself with positive people. Try to minimize or cut off toxic people.
Having positive social interactions and being surrounded by positivity can help decrease your feelings of depression. This can also help you attract other positive people who can help lift your mood.
3. Take It One Step at a Time
There’s no magic pill to make depression go away forever. Sometimes, people who are on the right path to overcoming depression stumble.
Avoid overwhelming yourself in your battle against depression. Be kind to yourself and take each step one at a time.
Remember, this isn’t a race, and you can take things at your own pace. Do small, consistent actions that help lift your spirits, and try to avoid negative self-talk when depressive feelings start to get the better of you again.
4. Look at Things from a Different Perspective
Sometimes, all you need is a fresh set of eyes when you deal with depressive feelings.
On some days, certain triggers can suddenly push your buttons and put you in a depressive state. By learning what your depression trigger is, you can slowly change the way your mind looks at it by having a different perspective.
What kind of perspectives?
- The most commonly used perspective is to look at it as a lesson to be learned.
- Another perspective is you are not the cause of bad luck.
- Remind yourself that the trigger is something you can’t avoid but one you can control through training, exposure, and discipline.
5. Make Sure You’re Sleeping Well
According to research, a lack of sleep can negatively affect mental health.
- Those who are suffering from insomnia are 10x more likely to have clinical depression than those who sleep normally.
- They’re also 17x more likely to suffer from clinical anxiety.
If you want to overcome depression, make sure you’re sleeping well. This allows your brain to rest and repair itself.
If you’re having trouble sleeping, try making your bedroom more conducive for sleep or doing sleep meditation exercises.
6. Practice Positive Self-Talk
We can all be hard on ourselves, especially when it comes to failure. This constant self-berating can decrease your self-esteem and increase negative feelings.
To counter this, celebrate even the tiniest achievements or milestones. Avoid looking to external sources for validation — start with yourself.
According to research, exercising can ease the symptoms of depression. This is because it boosts the production of endorphins, which can boost one’s mood and provide a healthy distraction from negativity.
Additionally, working out in a gym is a good way to interact with others, which can also help combat depression. Loneliness and isolation aren’t good for someone who’s feeling down and hopeless.
8. Listen to Uplifting Music
Never underestimate the power of good music.
- Are there any songs that trigger positive memories, like your wedding song or a cheerful, upbeat instrumental?
- How about a certain genre that lifts your spirits?
Making a playlist you associate with good memories can help improve your mood and make you feel better about yourself. Bust out this playlist when you’re in a depressive state to help you feel better.
9. Have a Gratitude Journal
A gratitude journal can help you silence the negative and acknowledge the positive in your life. Both reading and writing in your journal can help you fight off depressive feelings:
- Reading — When you’re feeling down, reading your journal can help remind you of the good things you have in your life. Your judgment when you’re feeling sad may be clouded by negativity, so it’s important to remind yourself of the positives.
- Writing — Writing down in your gratitude journal can also help lift your spirits if you’re feeling down and hopeless. It reminds you that there’s still good left in your life, and there are other things you can look forward to in life.
10. Express Your Feelings Through Art
Creative people express their thoughts and feelings through art. Even if you don’t consider yourself creative, you can use arts and crafts as an outlet to help you cope with depressive feelings.
Whatever you’re feeling, try to express it in writing, painting, or even making music. Choose an art form and leave your pain and negative feelings in your medium.
Doing this can also provide a healthy distraction or a way to fill up your time. Rather than letting your mind wander off to negative thoughts, use that time to pursue your creative outlet instead.
11. Have a Daily To-Do List
In some cases, depressive feelings start creeping in when you don’t feel like you’re being productive or achieving enough. A healthy way of dealing with this is to make a daily to-do list.
This can help you track your progress throughout the day. At the end of the day, you’ll also be able to celebrate your accomplishments and feel secure knowing you’ve achieved your goals.
12. Practice Meditation Daily
Meditation relaxes and calms the mind. The daily struggles and tensions may wear you down, but meditation can help clear your head and refresh your mind.
Meditation can help you strengthen your mind, so you can be more equipped to fight off depressive emotions. You also train your mind to be more resilient, even in the face of negativity.
13. Don’t Be Afraid to Talk to a Specialist
You don’t need to fight your battle alone. Acknowledging you need help is a brave thing to do and can be a significant step to help you get better.
If you’ve been experiencing long-term depressive feelings, you may want to talk to a specialist. A trained expert can provide ways to cope with these feelings and help accelerate your journey to overcoming depression.
Overcoming depression is not an easy task for anyone, but these 13 simple actions can lead you on the right path to finding happiness. Remember, be kind to yourself and choose to do small, simple acts consistently so you don’t end up overwhelmed.
What are some things you do to lift your spirits if you’re feeling down? Share them with us in the comments section below.
- 11 Ways To Live A Better, Happier Life
- Joy Vs. Happiness: How To Achieve Both
- 13 Priceless Pieces Of Money Advice From Famous People In History