While depression is a serious illness, you can fight back against it and win if you know what to do when it strikes. Of course, if your depression is severe, however, it’s important to seek the advice of a physician and sometimes medication may be warranted.
Most people with depression have a mild to moderate form, and they can do a lot to help themselves. By using some tips and tricks to get through depressive episodes, you can feel better and look forward to life.
Handling Depression without Medication…
Conquering your depression is possible and success often comes from believing in what you’re trying to accomplish.
People who succeed keep pressing forward, even if they’re scared or things look difficult. They continue to work because they know there are great rewards awaiting them. You can have those rewards, too!
These strategies may help you handle your depression without medication.
1. Find your purpose.
Each one of us has a purpose in this life. If you’re alive, then you matter! It’s a beginning point to work from. Make a list of everything good in your life and the things that make you feel alive. Take time to think about it, and you’ll come up with more than you expect. This can be a starting point to finding your unique gifts and your purpose.
- Take the Leap by Heather McCloskey Beck
- The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth am I Here for? by Rick Warren
2. Know who your friends are.
This one can really help a lot. Spend your time with people who share positive attitudes, goals, and beliefs. These kinds of people can help raise your spirits when times are tough. Likewise, avoid people in your life who are “toxic.” The people you spend time with really matters.
- Another idea is to get involved in a support group for people with depression. These people, like you, are finding ways to conquer their depression and can be tremendously helpful to you.
3. Get moving!
Exercise is one of the best ways to feel better. You’ll have more energy and it’s a scientifically proven mood-booster as well. Start small if you need to, but work your way up to 3-5 times of focused exercise per week.
- See Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain
for data and a detailed explanation about how exercise can be equally effective as prescription anti-depressants.
4. Pay attention to what you’re eating.
A diet high in sugar is a surefire path to feeling lousy. Remember, most grains convert to sugar after you eat them. Those are good to avoid too if you’re looking to boost your overall mood and avoid depression.
Many people with depression find that their depression lifts after avoiding gluten. A great resrouce is TheDr.com.
Many people who embark on a paleo diet also find that their mood is considerably better. See The Paleo Cure: Eat Right for Your Genes, Body Type, and Personal Health Needs — Prevent and Reverse Disease, Lose Weight Effortlessly, and Look and Feel Better than Ever.
There’s Even More You Can Do To Conquer Depression
You can feel better more quickly if you’re dedicated to making changes in your life. These changes can start out small so you feel comfortable making them. For example, using positive affirmations each day when you wake up can help a lot in feeling good for the rest of the day.
Guided meditation or dedicated times of quiet and reflection are known to help.