It’s dark, cold, and damp. You can hear the sound of water dripping from an unknown source and the occasional scampering sound of a critter going about his daily routine. You try to move your arms but the sound of clattering chains makes it clear that your wrists are shackled to the wall.
There’s an opening above you. It lets a little bit of sunshine into your cell. The wall doesn’t look too difficult to climb. If you could somehow break the chains that hold you back, freedom could be yours.
The cell in this scenario is like your mind when you’re suffering from depression.
The chains keep you attached to the wall, unable to fully enjoy the experiences that life throws at you. Depression keeps you trapped in your cold, dark, cell. If only there was a way to break those chains and escape…
How to Break the Chains of Depression:
(Break free from depression with these steps below on how to break out of depression.)
It’s possible to break the chains of depression. It’s possible to get rid of those shackles and climb out of your cell. It’s possible to be free. But how? How to break depression?
Answer: Seek help, and in the meantime, try this process. Each step in this course of action is designed help set you free from your depression.
Step 1: Understand Depression
There are many different types of depression. It’s important for you to identify what type of depression you suffer from so you can seek the most effective treatment.
The most severe type of depression is called Clinical Depression. It’s chronic, and it’s not triggered by anything specific. It’s simply always there. Most doctors prescribe anti-depressants and counseling for those who suffer from clinical depression. It usually lasts for years, possibly even a lifetime.
Another mental condition called Bipolar Disorder can cause depression. This condition forces a person to switch moods rapidly. One minute he might be ecstatic and another minute he might be suicidal. It is often cyclical in nature.
Step 2: Monitor Your Thoughts
It’s likely that you feed your depression with negative thoughts. It’s important to observe your thoughts to avoid getting stuck in a negative thought loop. Dr. Amen refers to these as Automatic Negative Thoughts or “ANTS.”
For example, jealousy can lead to intense depression. If you find yourself feeling jealous of a certain person, reduce the amount of time spent with that person. Cynical thoughts can also encourage depression.
- Practice thinking positively. Positive thoughts can have a massive impact on your outlook towards life and how you feel.
Step 3: Get out in the Great Outdoors
Spending time in nature has been proven to reduce some symptoms of depression. Take a walk through a public park or a nearby forest. Looking at green vegetation can actually relax your eyes and reduce stress. Watch the birds and squirrels busily scurrying about in their daily routines.
- Close your eyes, take in the sounds of the forest, feel the breeze on your arms, and breathe in the aroma of fresh leaves.
Step 4: Exercise Regularly
Exercising re-energizes your body, produces hormones that elevate your mood, and boosts confidence.
For best results:
- Conduct a bit of research before you hit a gym, in order to familiarize yourself with different workout routines. Encourage a friend to join you.
- If joining a gym isn’t your style, you can still get plenty of exercise. Run and play with your kids and pets. Take walks, swim, or play sports.
- This step has been scientifically proven to help with depression. Dr. John Ratley discusses this in depth in his book, Spark.
Step 5: Discover What Triggers Your Depression
Every person on the planet is incredibly unique. Your triggers can be completely different from someone else’s. Take a moment or two to analyze your depression and try to figure out what is creating the negative thoughts.
- There could be a number of triggers. For instance, many men suffer from depression because they can’t seem to communicate with women without feeling harshly rejected, thus triggering depressive feelings.
- Once you find your triggers, it is easier to work towards eliminating the depression.
Breaking the chains of depression isn’t something that anyone can do for you. You must make the decision on your own to break free from depression. Remember, it’s not impossible. There’s no need to spend another minute in that cold, damp, cell.