LIVING WITH DEPRESSION
Living with depression is not easy. Getting out of bed in the morning might just feel like your biggest accomplishment of the day when you suffer from depression. The things you used to enjoy like playing with your kids feels more like a task & going out with your friends just doesn’t seem to do the trick anymore. Getting ready for the day usually isn’t on your list of things to do because your mentally exhausted from the constant racing thoughts & sleeping might just feel like your only escape. Most of the time you feel tired, irritable, and may even have feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, & thoughts of suicide. You may feel like the world would be better off without you, like your just bringing everyone else down or like something is wrong with you. Living with depression in today’s generation can leave you feeling isolated and alone with your feelings because you’re afraid or ashamed to talk about it in fear of looking weak. I’m writing this blog today because I can speak from experience on the subject and I hope to help others find relief.
YOU’RE NOT ALONE
First I want anyone suffering with depression to know that you are not alone. Don’t let social media fool you. People like to boast & highlight all of the things going right in their life but they don’t always post the behind the scenes topics. I say this because I don’t want you to compare your life to everyone elses because life isn’t always what it seems & we only know what people allow us to know. In fact there are 121 million people worldwide who suffer from depression and over 30% of the US population. These statistics increase by 20% each year.
UNDERSTANDING TO OVERCOME
There are many causes of depression. Health problems such as obesity, heart disease, imbalanced hormones & thyroid problems can be directly linked to depression. Your personal life can also play a large part of it. Childhood traumas, unresolved hurts/heartaches, relationship problems, divorce, physical and or mental abuse, financial struggles or simply being overwhelmed can lead to depression. Then there is the hidden trigger that isn’t so popular to talk about which is spiritual oppression. The good news is that there are steps you can take to overcome this trial in your life and there is light at the end of the tunnel. One thing is for sure, giving into the depression and not fighting back isn’t going to resolve anything, so make the decision today to overcome.
I have compiled a list of things you can do to help get yourself back on the right track. The important thing to remember is that you cant give up, you cant allow depression to continue consuming you. Every step you take against it, big or small, is a step in the right direction and a step closer to where you need to be. So lets get to it.
1. RENEWING YOUR MIND
This might be the most important step of all because the battlefield begins in our mind. My bible has helped me with this part, and even if you don’t believe in Christ these words contain wisdom. In 2 Corinthians 10:5 we read “ Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ”
When you have a negative thought enter your mind it is important to take that thought captive and switch your train of thought. You cant allow yourself to dwell on that thought or you’ll find yourself sinking deeper into depression & if you allow that thought to linger it will usually lead to other negative thoughts. In Philippians 4:8 we read, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” I couldn’t have said it better myself. When these thoughts enter, replace them with good thoughts. I like to think of buying my first home and remodeling it with my husband, I start thinking of things I would like rather than the things I am upset about and then I start making plans to move forward. You can analyze your situation so that you can come up with a plan to change things but don’t dwell on the negative, use it as a step forward.
Music has a way of changing the atmosphere around you and can affect your mood. Some songs take us back to good times, some take us back to hard times & then there are those songs that help give us hope. If you are going through a break up don’t listen to music that reminds you of that person, if you are grieving the loss of a loved one then don’t listen to music that relates to that loss. Listen to music that lifts your spirit or maybe some old songs that you forgot about. Turn the music up, scream, shout & dance, just don’t sit there soaking in words that will bring you down.
3. GET SOME SUN
I know you don’t want to go outside, you just want to lay in bed and watch netflix, scroll on your phone or sleep but a lack of sun can also lead to depression. We need sunlight to help optimize our vitamin D production & when its dark your melatonin levels increase, which is why you may feel tired. Serotonin is also released in response to sunlight, which helps elevate your mood and energy. I suggest waking up and spending the first 30 minutes of your day soaking in the sunlight. Plan a beach or river trip with friends or family, catch a tan, explore new places, just get yourself outside.
4. STAY BUSY
Like I mentioned before the battlefield starts in our mind, so don’t give your mind enough time to generate those negative thoughts and emotions. The first thing I would suggest doing is finding a hobby. I like to use photography as a creative outlet or spend time refinishing old furniture. It keeps me busy and my attention is redirected for the time being. If you aren’t feeling overwhelmed you can make a list of things to do, and if you are a mom than you know there is always stuff to be done. (insert laughing face) Sometimes making a list and crossing things off can help you feel accomplished. Make plans and stick to them. Go on a date with your friends and try to get back to some of the things you used to enjoy.
5. DON’T HOLD IT IN
Dwelling on things and dealing with them are a bit different. We don’t want to dwell on things but we don’t want to just cover them up either. When we bottle up emotions we allow them to take root in us because we are not expelling them. If you feel that overwhelming urge to scream, or cry then do it! Find someone to talk to, write it down, tear it up, just don’t hold it in.
6.SPEAK WITH A DOCTOR
In many cases speaking with a doctor can help resolve or diminish the symptoms of depression. There are medications that can be provided to help balance things out. I was prescribed medication for depression and while It didn’t cure me, it helped reduce the symptoms so that I could get through the day and prevented me from reaching those severely low episodes. You can also look into some all natural products to help provide you with some kind of relief.
7. DIET & EXERCISE
To be honest I am not an expert on the subject of diet or exercise but I do know that a good diet and exercise are vital and a poor diet and lack of exercise can also lead to depression. Just about any blog you read will mention this topic as a main source of depression, and I recommend looking into it further.
8. LOOK TO GOD
Many people may not believe in taking this route but I can say that it was the key to pushing forward for me when all else failed. People have told me it was all in my mind and that I was desperate for help so I created a resolution, I know this isn’t the case because before I turned to God, I turned to medication and psychiatric help but didn’t find the relief I needed. Now I am not saying that these weren’t steps forward, they just didn’t give me the amount of relief that I needed as it has for others. To make a long story short, when I turned to God he revealed that the source of my depression was not something that medical treatment could treat because it was a spiritual issue. I was in bondage from generation curses & spiritual oppression. I had a deliverance from the spirit of depression and suicide and found the relief that I needed. Staying in prayer, reading my bible and leaning on God has been the best tool to overcoming depression for me. I will be blogging more on the subject in future posts. If you have questions in regard to this topic feel free to comment or message me.
I hope that this post will benefit you in some way and that you will overcome this trial in your life. Remember to keep pushing forward and don’t give up. You are not alone, there is hope, & there is nothing wrong with you just because you are depressed. If you have any questions or would like to leave a comment please feel free to and I will respond as soon as I can. Each of you are in my prayers. Thank you for reading.