Depression is an illness that must be taken seriously. Often, those who struggle with depression may feel overwhelmed, hopeless, and drained. Depression can make it difficult to take care of yourself, or even complete basic tasks. You may wonder how to get out of a depressive state. The illness affects everyone differently. If you’re experiencing depression, it’s important to seek treatment and advice from a medical professional. In addition to receiving professional treatment, you can integrate other supportive strategies to help you recover from a depressive state.
Know Your Warning Signs And Triggers
Cultivating self-awareness will enable you to figure out what brings on a depressive state for you and why. Notice your thoughts and behaviors when you begin to feel depressed, or right before depression sets in. Maybe irritability and moodiness indicate that a depressive state is imminent. If you observe these changes as red flags, you’ll have a better chance to mitigate or possibly even circumvent an oncoming depressive state.
Furthermore, strive to get curious about what induces these changes in thoughts and behaviors. For example, a lack of sufficient sleep can make you more vulnerable to the onset of depression or less able to cope with an episode after it begins.
If you are able to slow down and reflect, you’ll likely be more prepared to take the course of action to more effectively deal with an oncoming depressive state. Keep a journal over time to track information and look for patterns. What’s not immediately obvious in the moment might reveal itself in your records. The ability to name emotions and their causes is a powerful tool in the process of emotional regulation.
Use Compassionate Self Talk
Language is a vital part of communication with others. It’s also a vital part of how we communicate with ourselves. Talking to ourselves harshly intensifies feelings of being unworthy and helpless. It’s important to monitor your use of self-talk, especially when struggling with depression.
Because depression often causes intense feelings of guilt, it is important to replace judgmental, critical self-talk with improved self-awareness and self-compassion. There is no way you “should” or “must” feel. Emotions are not bad, although some are difficult.
Negativity loops are a destructive result of critical self-talk, which can be used as an instrument of punishment. To push back, start trying to differentiate thoughts from emotions. A thought can be challenged, while an emotion simply exists. “No one likes me” is a thought rooted in assumptions, while “I feel lonely” is a valid emotion. By separating the two, you can focus on accepting your feelings and challenging unhealthy thoughts.
Seek Support From Your Community
Depression can be isolating. Often, depression correlates with feelings of loneliness, which often cause people to further withdraw socially. Social interactions can feel overwhelming for people with depression. Seeking support from your community can help counteract feelings that you are alone and overwhelmed.
Seeking support from your community can take many different shapes. Reaching out is the most important step. Let loved ones know that you are experiencing depression, which will create an opportunity for them to more likely and easily reach out to you in the future. Communicate ways for others to best support you. If talking on the phone every Sunday or having once-weekly dinners will make you feel supported, ask for those. Asking for help with chores, self-care, or getting to appointments are often useful requests as well.
Treatment Is Key
It is crucial to get professional help to treat depression. Talk therapy and medication are two popular and often effective courses of treatment. TMS is another treatment option that can be used alone or in combination with other approaches. Studies have shown TMS to be a highly safe and effective treatment for depression, especially for patients who are treatment resistant or treatment intolerant.