Depression is a state of low mood & aversion to activity, which can affect to a person's behavior, thoughts, feelings & sense of well-being. Depressed people may feel sad, empty, hopeless, anxious, helpless, guilty, irritable, worthless or restless. Recently, VKool.com made a collection of 63 tips for dealing with depression alone naturally without drugs from reliable sources. However, this writing is solely for the informational purpose, please make sure that you will consult with your medical practitioner before following tips presented in this article. In addition, VKool made some articles related to depression including the truth about depression, causes and symptoms, and much more. You can check out at here:
Discover 63 Self-Help And Coping Tips For Dealing With Depression
1. Talk To Someone
Maybe you can feel so ashamed about getting help; therefore, I think that it is a part of having depression. To help you feel better, you should begin to tell yourself that you should not “need” help, and then tell yourself that something is messed up with you, which you have to go talk to someone you know. For me, this is a one of easy ways to dealing with depression, getting through and getting better. Personally, I have found a method called the cognitive therapy approach that is helpful for me to deal with depression, but you could be different. You should find a few people who you feel comfortable with, and who are very kind.
2. Make Moving
Researchers indicate that moving your body is a good way in dealing with depression. Psychologically, it tells you through something physically that you are okay, and that you maybe are in a sense of “moving on”. A study indicates that when we can move our body, our brain knows that all things might be okay, because we are not “down and out”. Therefore, whatever you can do, you should do it. If that is ten minutes per day, so be it. I have used some cardio and yoga exercises that have been very beneficial. Yoga exercises have been surprisingly helpful for anyone who used them. Following yoga is not difficult, which means I cannot really focus on anything but yoga. Yoga is physically taxing, so our brain gets those cues, which things may be okay. Yoga is satisfying to accomplish something, which many people find to be extremely difficult. I understand that the last thing that people want to perform when they suffered from depression is to get out as well as move. I believe that if you begin making it as a small habit, it will help you improve all things over time.
Learn more: End Your Depression book – a guidebook for dealing with depression naturally, and eliminating negative feelings
3. Do Meditation
Meditation is one of the good ways for dealing with depression naturally, and it is useful for those people who have a tendency to feel depressed. It also is useful for people with depression who are caused by chemical imbalances (for example, those people who live with manic-depression or bipolar disorder). I am convinced that meditating can be extremely useful for depression, whether depression is organic (caused by the chemical imbalance in brain) or situational (caused by a few external events). In addition, some recent researches have shown that doing meditation will dramatically lower the chances of relapsing into depression for those people who have suffered from repeated bouts. There are some types of meditation that do not benefit to those people who have the tendency to experience depression. 2 types of meditation called metta bhavana practice and mindfulness of breathing practice are certainly helpful for anyone to practice. You can start just with a few minutes of intentional breathing instead of having to think, “I need to do meditation for 30 minutes”. Therefore, for now, you just sit still for a few minutes and breathe out and in deeply.
Recommended reading: 18 Benefits Of Meditation & Mindfulness Study On The Body 2014
4. Write Something Down
Maybe you think this way is so simple, and it is not useful for you, but for me writing something has been a great solution for me. I do not want to share what I write, because I only write and let the words flow, so I get it all out. Many researchers indicate that just having ability to think through what may happen in your life will help you a lot – you only think something, then you write it out, and then you will feel like you are dealing with it, and acknowledging your issue. In short, you should try writing something; it is worth trying for dealing with depression.
5. Changing Your Environment Or Space
When you are ready to face with your depression, there are so many easy and effective ways for you to choose. One of simple ways for dealing with depression is making some changes in your space. It means that sometimes, you take a car and you can go somewhere else such as going to the beach, going to your friends’ home, or going to entertainment centers. In addition, a bookstore, a park, a coffee shop, or a cinema is useful places for you to choose from. These ideas will help you change the environment that you are in.
6. Call Your Friend
If you do not like to tell some people when you are feeling really down, you do not need to go into any detail at all, you only need to have a call to a friend you like to chat for a few minutes. You can call someone and then you chat with him or her online only about your regular life. You do not have to talk about your actual mind state, only talk about something that is simple, fun, and make you smile. I am sure that you can pass through your depression with ease.
7. Take Part In A Class
Taking part in a class is a good idea for dealing with depression. You can seek a class that you are interested and sign-up! I have been back in school to make a study of nutritional science and I will soon begin my PhD track for human psychology. Taking a class is a positive solution for me in my life – for example, I have had the challenge of learning and studying, I have had a few interactions with teachers and students, and this leaded to a difference for me. However, beyond that there are a lot of other classes, which I take. To take part in a class, you can look online for courses (a lot of online courses are free), then you can check out MIT’s free open classes, which you can audit (I want to uncover to you that I have taken several of them and I have loved all of them). For instance, you can go to a local community center, take part in a class on pottery, or find classes that teach how to make jewelry or some basic car maintenance. In addition, taking a yoga class or a water aerobics class may help you improve your mind significantly. Psychologists encourage depressed people to get out, and learn a new skill to have positive thinking for their life. Depression is considered as a difficult and complicated thing to go through. However, you should know that you will not be alone in the battle, and you need to believe that over time, all things will begin becoming better.
Recommended reading: Shapeshifter yoga PDF review – this review exposes the best yoga course for beginners
8. Clean Your Room
Another way to deal with depression is cleaning your room or organizing your space. I want to uncover to you that this has really helped me a lot in lifting from depression. According to a research, cleaning your room or organizing your space will help tell your brain that all things are going to become just fine, if your closet is cleaned and organized, then life cannot be all that bad. Therefore, to help you get rid of depression, you should consider if you need to organize your house.
9. Apply The Christian Counseling Methods To Treat Depression
Some of Christian approaches can be useful for you in dealing with depression such as:
- Eclectic counseling: eclectic counseling is bible-oriented and integrates with secular psychological concepts, which are suitable with scripture. This approach covers steps on how to succeed over certain problems, and it is given to help you bring about a main change in behavior and thinking.
- Directive counseling: directive counseling is a bible-centered approach that scripturally confronts depressed people out of a Christian concern for the aim of creating repentance. Scriptural principles will be given in a step by step guide to direct behavioral changes.
- Memory source counseling: memory source counseling is a Christ-centered approach, which can help the counselees follow their present emotional pain to its source that is a stressful life, past event. Once the counselees found, Jesus is asked to uncover the truth about the lies the counselees have believed about the past hurt. Behavioral changes and thinking follow Jesus’ revelation.
- Discipleship counseling: discipleship counseling also is a Christ-centered approach that concentrates on the believers’ lives in Christ. The essential element to this Christ-centered approach is the revelation of the Holy Spirit in knowing god intimately as well as understanding how to live out of the Christ’s life. The behavioral change occurs spontaneously as a person learns to walk in the Holy Spirit. This approach is also called the exchanged life.
Learn more: Depression Help Fast book – a guidebook for coping with symptoms of depression
10. Learn To Accept Your Depression And Then Deal With It
To help you in dealing with depression, you need to know that depression requires understanding and acceptance to open up to other people and conquer it. Many people who are suffering from depression can be in denial or they can think that their depression condition will fast pass. Many psychologists say that the road to recovery from depression is often not easy; however, by accepting it, you can start to understand it, open up to other people and, eventually, beat it.
11. Control Your Stress
To lower your stress levels, you can look after yourself through your lifestyle changes. Maybe you have heard that “this is often easier said than done”, however, it is more important for you to try your best not to be stressed. In addition, looking after yourself through your lifestyle changes can lead to get rid of stress by identifying stress triggers as well as planning things in advance that you can minimize any possible fluctuation in high stress levels.
Learn more: Conquer Stress Forever book – a guidebook for controlling stress in any situation.
12. Need Help From Other People
The help of other people is very essential for treating your depression. A support from other people can allow for company and it is a helpful support on the road to recovery from your depression. It can help you overcome a scary thought. Some women have helped their partners get rid of depression problem. According to psychologists, by turning to friends and family, part of the burden will be taken away, and by joining to a support group, you will feel you are not alone and you can get useful advice from them.
13. Do Not Spend Your Day In Bed And Let Take Time For Yourself
Some doctors advice that depressed people should not stay all day in bed. If you stay all day in your bed, it means that you are doing the worst thing. It means that you accepted depression and allow it to stifle you. Maybe, some aged women have depression because of their menopause. Although menopause is difficult, it is more important to always maintain your mind active, face up to the way you think, and make something positive. In addition, you need time to relax, it means that while it is very important to let people in, it is more important to decide when to shut them out. Although all of people you know want to help you, it is more important not to feel smothered by friends and family when having to deal with depression during menopause.
Recommended reading: How To Stop Overthinking Everything – Relax And Enjoy Life
14. Change Your Old Patterns Of Behavior And Thinking
If you want to change your old patterns of thinking and behavior, you need to read good material about depression, notice how happy and healthy people live more differently than we do, seek God’s wisdom and memorize scripture. To dealing with depression, you must change actual thinking completely. You know that depression is rarely something, which cannot easily happen to us; however, it usually is a combination of other factors such as stress and anxiety to lead to depression condition. To cure for yourself, you need to understand those patterns and then acknowledge that your changes will be frightening. To sum up, you need to examine your patterns of thinking and then overcome behaviors that reinforce your depression.
Here are some easy ways to keep in mind if you want to change your thinking:
- Recognize the feeling will pass. This way may be very difficult, but it is vital because it can help you to begin banishing thoughts of hopelessness.
- List all of your good points. You should list achievements from the past as well as hopes for the future. This list will keep you building upon as you work through your depression. It also helps you stop judging yourself more harshly than anyone else.
- Make small decisions such as cleaning up the kitchen, getting out of bed, or calling friends.
- Learn tips to replace your faulty thinking by focusing on it. For example, you arrange your negative thoughts in one column and a rationalization in another column with the intention that you can confront as well as undo these negative thinking.
- Learn some simple assertiveness techniques once you have challenged the harder aspects of your processes of negative thinking. These assertive techniques will let you find a pathway to stand up for yourself with not giving into feelings of fear, anger, or even powerlessness.
15. Prepare For Growth And Face Your Fears
You know that scripture always tells us that if we sow to the Spirit, we can reap to the Spirit. It means that when you invest in spiritual growth, you will dramatically grow. And, when your grow, well-being and joy are a byproduct. Therefore, if you ready to release the skin of depression, it means that you are ready for new changes, you also ready to act and think differently. This will lead you to a happier life.
Another way for dealing with depression without drugs is facing your fear. You do not avoid the things that you find difficult. For example, when someone feels low or anxious, he or she sometimes avoids talking to other people. In addition, a few people may lose their confidence in driving or travelling. I want to share with you a secret that has helped me a lot in struggling with depression. It means that when depression starts to happen with me, I need to face up to it to help me feel easier and more comfortable.
16. Set Limitations And Do Not Be A Superwoman Or Superman
For chronic depression sufferers, do not feel bad about setting realistic goals and limitations over the holidays. In the holidays, you can avoid some things such as running from one party to the next party, buying gifts, or preparing feasts. Maybe you can feel uncertain about whether you are coming or going. If you are dealing with depression, a chronic condition, maybe it does not make sense for you to run around and take care of all the last-minute details, which come with the holidays. You should set your limitations, and then speak with someone you love about what you can do realistically, and then focus on simple activities, which make you become happy as well as take your mind off how you find. For example, this means that you can be responsible for stringing up a Christmas tree, or make some other easy activities. The key point is to focus on activities, which excite you and can indulge your mind.
17. Meet With A Friend For A Walk
Another way for dealing with depression is to go for a walk. Although walking can be exhausting even for people who do not have depression, if you contact with a friend, it can be a great source of compassion and emotional support. Many specialists say that meeting a friend for a walk will be a great method of combining a moderate physical activity with casual social interaction.If your friends do not know you are suffering from depressed, that is okay, because, you are not obligated to talk with them. If they know, that is okay too. In addition, walking brings people with a lot of amazing benefits. It can help depressed people get rid of any feeling of nervous anxiety or awkwardness. Whether you talk about your depression condition or any other subject, you are not exclusively concentrated on the conversation and person you are with.
Quick tip: If in the past, you tended to make your own plans, and then you felt so depressed to go ahead with them, you can ask your friend to go to your place to meet you. If you do not have a particularly bad day, you can make sure that your friend is outside.
18. Do Some Gardening Or Cleaning Works
Interestingly, a lot of researches indicate that gardening is as a part of the daily moderate physical activity that can have a profound effect on preventing or treating depression. Do you have a garden? You should get out there and mow the lawn, plant some seeds, or get some pruning done. You do not need to blitz the entire back or front yard in a day; however, this activity will bring you the added advantage of having ability to see the better results for your efforts that can be a great motivator. If you live in an apartment, you can give your apartment a little bit of a spruce such as scrubbing or washing. For example, you can clean a cupboard, the fridge and your bedroom. It is all activities that are useful for you.
19. Go Along With A Pet When Taking A Walk
I have read a wide range of positive stories from people with depression who got rid of depression by taking a furry friend when having a walk. Particularly, dogs are considered as friends of all of families. Therefore, why do you not take a walk with your dogs, a four-legged companion?
If you do not have a dog, you can offer to walk a neighbor or a friend. With this way, you will do your friend a favor and get pleasure from the benefits of dog walking as part of your treatment plan or strategy for depression without needing to worry about your responsibility in looking after your dog when your walk is over. The study by Andrea Dunn showed that 3 periods of 10-minute exercise a day would have a similar effect to a single 30-minute exercise. Therefore, when you find ready, you should consider 2 or 3 small goals of a 10-minute period of exercise per day.
Recommended reading: 18 Health Benefits Of Walking Everyday Outside
20. Take Aerobic And Cardio Exercises
If you find workouts for dealing with depression, aerobic and cardio exercises are the best choices for you. Dr. Muzina says, “To date, the strongest evidence seems to support aerobic exercise”. There are a lot of arguments about choosing the most effective depression-fighting exercise for depressed people, but a lot of experts have recommended that people with depression can spend 20 to 30 minutes a day to follow aerobic and cardio exercises that are simple and easy. In addition, according to a recent review of several scientific studies, researchers indicate that there is no link between the intensity levels of exercise and their emotional benefit.
Learn more: Face And Neck Aerobics course – this course covers simple and easy aerobic exercises for your face and neck
21. Build Your Muscles
Have you heard “Boost your strength, boost your happiness”? According a recent study of over 40 stroke survivors with their depression, researchers indicate that a strength training program for 10 weeks helped dramatically reduce symptoms of depression, and bring numerous other benefits.
Leslie Seppinni, a family therapist and clinical psychologist in Beverly Hills says, “Strength training is about mastery and control”. He also says, “It requires full attention and concentration. More importantly, people can see the results, the outline of the muscles forming, from dedication and training.” If you want to be more active, you can start following a strength training program slowly and use the assistance of professional personal trainers if needed.
Learn more: Muscle Imbalances Revealed program – a new program for muscle building and improve muscle imbalances
22. Become A Yogi
In a recent study of 60 women who suffered from depression and anxiety, in which 30 women who took a yoga course twice a week for only 2 months had a significant decrease in their anxiety and depression symptoms, compared to the 30 women who did not follow a yoga course.
N. Rosenthal, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the GUSM in Washington, D.C says, “Eastern traditions including yoga have a amazing antidepressant effect in improving flexibility and involving mindfulness that breaks up repetitive negative thinking; increases strength; makes you aware of your breathing; improves balance; and contains a meditative component.” He also suggests depressed people to start following a yoga class in their area so they can be sure that they are doing the movements and poses correctly.
23. Try Tai Chi
Tai Chi is known as another Eastern tradition that is also like yoga. It covers the slow and gentle movements to help learners break free from their depression symptoms or major depressive disorder. In a recent study of 15 older Chinese patients who suffered from depression, those people who took tai chi over a 3-month period have a significant improvement in their anxiety and depression symptoms. Researchers also hypothesized that tai chi and its social aspects that are done in the group settings, may have played a main role in its effectiveness.
24. Go Play Outside
When you feel sad, you should go outside. If you enjoy playing outdoors, even make some simple activities including throwing a ball around with some children, gardening, or washing a car, you will feel better. That is because researchers indicate that a healthy dose of sunlight can help boost mood, and stimulate serotonin levels. Shoshana Bennett, a clinical psychologist, and the author of the book called Postpartum Depression for Dummies says, “Just moving your body inside or out is exercise. Choose whatever works for you, depending on your functioning level, energy, and preferences.”
25. Watch Your Lifestyle Habits
A lot of people who are suffering from depression also have problems with drugs or/and alcohol. You need to know that alcohol and drugs not only can interfere with sleep, mood, and motivation, but they can also lower the effectiveness of depression medications you use. In addition, drinking and eating foods that contain caffeine will trigger anxiety as well as make you difficult to sleep at night. If you often use drugs or drink alcohol or caffeine foods, you need to immediately cut out caffeine or stop drinking it after noon each day to help you get a better night's sleep.
26. Apply Some Natural And Safe Remedies To Ease Depression
- Garlic: some German researchers who studied the effects of garlic on cholesterol have discovered that participants who were treated with garlic experienced an elevation in mood. Therefore, you can try a little garlic therapy when you are feeling down.
- Coffee: experts say that if you are a habitual morning coffee drinker, you will know what your life can be when you do not get your morning cup of coffee. Maybe you will get a headache, you are cranky, and even you feel bad. Therefore, health researchers are finding that the caffeine may indeed alter our mood. It makes us less irritable and it helps us feel better. Experts also think that having 1 or 2 cups of coffee each day can indeed help people with mild depression ease their symptoms. However, you do not go overboard, because downing too much caffeine may make you jittery and even can make you become more anxious.
- Brazil nuts: Brazil nuts contain selenium, a trace mineral that is found abundantly in Brazil nuts (for example, 100 mcg in one nut) may help reduce symptoms of depression. In addition, recent studies show that people, who have low levels of selenium, tend to be more depressed, anxious as well as tired. When they ate foods that contain selenium, they felt better. People can get selenium in other natural sources such as seafood, tuna, swordfish, whole-wheat bread, oysters, pork, beef and lamb, sunflower seeds, turkey, chicken, mushrooms, whole grains, wheat germ, sprouted wheat, bacon, oat bran, sesame seeds, peanut butter, rabbit, matzo crackers, egg yolk, and more.
- Spinach: some recent researches indicate that a folic acid deficiency can be a major factor causing depression. Scientists begin suspecting a relationship between this B vitamin and the brain when they find out that people with depression have lower the level of folic acid than other people have. They believe that folic acid deficiency can cause serotonin levels to fall that may lead to feelings of depression. Ironically, one of the most common nutrient deficiencies in women is the folic acid deficiency. Nevertheless, the good news is that people only need around 200 mcg each day to meet their folic acid needs. For example, you only add up to about 3/4 cup of cooked spinach to your daily meals.
- Chicken: chicken is one of good foods for dealing with depression naturally. Researchers show that low levels of vitamin B6 can be an instigator of symptoms of depression, especially in women who are using birth control pills. Vitamin B6 is known as a necessary substance for your body to create serotonin, a neurotransmitter. The RDA for B6 vitamin is 1.3 mg for women and men up to the age of 50; after the age of 50, the amount of needed B6 vitamin increases to 1.7 mg. To get this vitamin naturally, people should eat chicken because 3 ounces of chicken contain 0.5 mg of vitamin B6.
27. Add Magnesium-Rich Foods In Your Daily Diet Plans To Boost Your Mood
According to recent studies, experts indicate that symptoms of depression may be linked to a deficiency in magnesium. You know that magnesium is a mineral, which our body needs to relax and contract muscles, and then to produce energy and protein. Furthermore, magnesium also is needed for bone support and growth.
Although magnesium deficiency is rare, adding magnesium-rich foods in your daily meals will help boost your mood. Nutritionists recommend that you should add at least a bounty of healthy foods to your diet. Nutrition experts also indicate that you should choose foods including seeds and nuts (pumpkin, cashews, sunflower and sesame seeds, and almonds), legumes and beans (navy beans, black beans, and soybeans), dark leafy greens (kale, spinach, collard greens and Swiss chard) and whole grains to increase your magnesium intake.
According to a study at the GERI, researchers show that when 120 to 300 mg of magnesium was given to major depression sufferers at mealtime and bedtime, these people began to recover from their symptoms in under a week.
28. Use Ginkgo Biloba To Relieve Minor Depression
Ginkgo biloba is a healing herb, which is used to treat a variety of diseases and conditions over thousands of years, involving some types of dementia. Currently, this herb is studied for its ability to lower symptoms of altitude sickness, PMS, symptoms of depression, and chemotherapy-induced end-organ vascular damage.
Furthermore, ginkgo biloba may be effective in alleviating minor depression in elderly people. This herb contains antioxidants, which counter free radicals in our body and effects of aging. You should know that free radicals can adversely affect the serotonin receptors in your brain as you age, and free radicals may increase the risk of getting depression in the elderly. Fortunately, ginkgo biloba is one of effective methods for increasing your serotonin levels and protein synthesis, and alleviating depressive symptoms in some people.
29. Take Vitamin C
Vitamin C is one of easy ways for dealing with depression. It is an antioxidant, which is usually used for curing the common cold. This vitamin helps protect you from cancer, cardiovascular disease, and stroke. It also is beneficial to your eye health and it helps boost your immune system. Furthermore, increasing vitamin C intake may alleviate symptoms of depression; because this vitamin plays an important role in how your body synthesizes the neurotransmitter norepinephrine (neurotransmitter norepinephrine is a brain chemical, which affects your mood).
You know that vitamin C is not stored in or manufactured by the body, so it is important to increase the vitamin C intake by taking supplements or adding more vegetables and fruits to your daily diet involving strawberries, pineapple, berries, citrus fruits, melons, tomatoes, bell peppers, and dark leafy greens. Health professionals recommend that you should take 500 mg of vitamin C each day.
Learn more: 16 Health Benefits Of Vitamin C
30. Try Using Saffron
According to some recent studies in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology, experts suggest that saffron may help boost the levels of serotonin as well as other chemicals in our brain. Researchers made a small study that looked at 40 people over 6 weeks, and they found that saffron was as effective as fluoxetine (Prozac) in relieving some of symptoms of depression.
In addition, participants taking saffron reported that they had fewer side effects such as sweating and sexual dysfunction than people who take fluoxetine.
31. Try Using Passionflower
I have yet to meet someone with depression who does not suffer from some degree of anxiety; therefore, I will reveal to you a gentle nervine relaxant herb that can help you calm down your mind a bit. If you are depressed because of being anxious, you should try using Passiflora incarnata that helps release your stress and keep your mind calm. From my observations, I see that anxiety typically feeds depression forward.
You should watch your depression patterns, and when you have depressed feelings, you can use an herb such as passionflower that might help you reduce your depression symptoms more than an anti-depressant herb. The extract of passionflower at 40 drops daily (tincture) was proven to be as effective as oxazepam.
32. Try Eating Schisandra
Schisandra is a perfect herb for people with depression who are stressed. This herb helps improve mood, break up anxiety, aid detoxification of liver, enhance libido and support the adrenal glands through its adaptogen properties. If you are a stressed people with the low libido and feeling frazzled, you should use this herb by taking it in the morning and at lunch. This herb contains adaptogen, so you do not take it in the evening, as you want to support your adrenal glands when they are the most active.
33. Keeping A Mood Diary
Almost therapists indicate that positive thinking can help reduce depression. Dr. Doraiswamy, a popular therapist recommends people to keep a mood diary. He says, “This is a tool used to train someone to keep track of positive things that are happening in their lives and not let single negative events wear them down.” The mood diary will keep negative events in perspective and it serves as a reminder that good days happen. Doraiswamy also recommends people not to write in your diary daily if you feel like too much works.
34. Apply The Acupuncture Therapy
Some small clinical trials of healing depression with the acupuncture therapy show that using the ancient treatment can be an effective and safe alternative to pharmacological remedies. According to a research that is funded by the NIHO of Alternative Medicine, published in the American Psychological Society journal, and conducted at the University of Arizona, about 75 % of women with depression who were cured with the acupuncture therapy had relief dramatically from their symptoms after 8 weeks. The research indicates that the acupuncture therapy can be as helpful as psychotherapy and drug therapy in relieving symptoms of depression.
Do you know how it works? Experts found that the depression-specific acupuncture triggers a release of certain chemicals in our brain, specifically dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin – 3 neurotransmitters that can alter our mood. In addition, according to experts at the SUSM (Stanford University School of Medicine), roughly 63 % of pregnant women with depression who were cured with the depression-specific acupuncture reported a significant relief from symptoms of depression.
35. Apply The Light Therapy
Some people are prone to one of types of depression called SAD (seasonal affective disorder) during the short and dark days of winter. To deal with this type of depression, you should use the light therapy. This therapy generally will start with daily 15-mintue sessions and then increase up to 2 hours daily. In other words, the timing depends on the severity of symptoms as well as the intensity of the light that a doctor can determine. Researchers say that the therapy does not cure depression, but it can reduce symptoms after only a few days.
36. Apply The Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
CBT – cognitive behavioral therapy also is called sophisticated education, one of effective methods for dealing with depression. Dr. Doraiswamy says that this method can help people with depression reduce their symptoms of depression dramatically. This method is developed and is based on the fact that thought triggers feelings. He also says that knowing about your thoughts and studying to change your destructive patterns may alter the way your brain works as well as your reaction to situations.
Cognitive behavioral therapy is considered as a short-term therapy that often lasts for 10 to 20 sessions. This therapy is as effective as medication in dealing with mild to moderate depression.
37. Interpersonal Psychotherapy And Psychodynamic Therapy
IPT – Interpersonal psychotherapy is an effective solution for dealing with depression. This method focuses on relationships. For example, interpersonal psychotherapy addresses specific conflicts inside your relationships and it looks at how you relate to other people involving friends, coworkers, family, and even strangers. In addition, short-term interpersonal psychotherapy usually lasts up to 20 sessions each week.
Psychodynamic Therapy focuses on eliminating the psychological root that causes your depression. To do this therapy, you will be asked to engage in the self-examination as well as the reflection on the past. This method aims to help you identify your troublesome relationship patterns in your life and understand where these problems come from. The method can help you see why you behave in certain ways, and then remove self-blame or guilt so you can move forward with your life.
38. Electroconvulsive, Alternative And Complementary Therapies
Experts say that instead of talk-based therapies and medications, alternative treatments are considered useful for many people who want to battle depression. For example, some herbal supplements and vitamins are believed to affect mood. However, researchers recommend that people with depression should consult with your healthcare providers before using any supplement. Electroconvulsive therapy is known as a shock treatment, which is used to treat for suicidal or severely depressed people who do not respond to other treatments or cannot take antidepressants. Electroconvulsive therapy is usually administered once every 2 to 5 days, for a total of 6 to 12 sessions.
39. Deep Brain Stimulation And Vagal Nerve Stimulation
Deep brain stimulation is a method that is originally used as an effective treatment for Parkinson's disease. This method is considered experimental for dealing with depression. With deep brain stimulation, 2 electrodes will be surgically implanted into a brain area, which is overactive in depressed people. These electrodes will provide the continual electric stimulation via a generator, which is embedded in the chest. Many experts believe the electric pulses will reset the brain and then help it to function normally.
Like DBS, vagal nerve stimulation is one of types of brain-stimulating therapy, which uses an implanted device to send the electric currents to your brain. An electrode is embedded only underneath your skin along the vagal nerve in the neck, instead of putting 2 electrodes in the brain. The vagal nerve will transmit messages from your brain to a few major organs including your lungs, heart, and intestines, and then it will transmit messages from your brain to select parts of the brain. Stimulating this vagal nerve will alter the levels of brain chemicals (neurotransmitters) associated with mood regulation. This therapy is used just in cases of chronic or severe depression when other treatments that you used are failed.
40. Cultivate Supportive Relationships
Loneliness and isolation make your depression even worse; therefore, maintaining your social activities and close relationships are very important. Depressed people often think that reaching out to friends and family members can seem overwhelming because they may feel ashamed, guilty for neglecting the relationship, and too exhausted to talk. If you are in this situation, you should remind yourself that this is a depression talking because reaching out is not a warning sign of weakness and it will not mean you are a burden to other people. You need to understand that your partner cares about you and wants to help you. In addition, you should remember, it is never too late to make new friendships as well as improve your support network. Here are some ways to cultivate supportive relationships:
- Turn to family members and trusted friends
- Share what you are going through with someone you love and trust
- Ask for a help or support you need
- Try to keep up with some simple social activities even if you do not feel like it
- Join a support group for depression
- Share your experiences and then receive advice on how to cope with your depression
41. Try Other Alternative Therapies
A lot of scientists investigate the potential of some alternative therapies including art therapy and acupuncture. Scientists say that in conjunction with other curing choices you have made, these alternative therapies can sometimes help you restore your emotional balance. However, it is very important to find a respected practitioner when you apply any alternative therapy. You do not be surprised in case you meet resistance from a few medical practitioners to any confidence on alternative therapies. Here are 3 alternative therapies you can apply:
- Music therapy: music is a form of self-help therapy, which is known to change your mood. You should choose music, which can help improve your mood. In case you have to listen to sad music, you should switch to more upbeat music after some songs or tunes.
- Art therapy: this is another common alternative therapy for dealing with depression. You can draw, paint or even create designs, which unleash your feelings on a paper or canvas. There are a lot of qualified art therapists who will assist you if needed.
- Pet therapy: Pets can help prevent a sense of isolation, because they do not judge, and they induce a feeling of well-being in depressed people. Dr. Hawkley says, “Pets, especially dogs, are protective against loneliness. There are many reasons why this strategy works: Dogs get you out and about, they’re naturally social creatures, and you’ll have a living being to care about. If you’re not in a position to own a dog, find ways to help care for other people’s dogs or volunteer to help dogs at a shelter that need loving attention.” You can choose other pets including cats and fish that can help you ease loneliness.
Learn more: 13 Best Pets To Have At Home Or In An Apartment
42. Eat A Healthy, Mood-Boosting Diet
Do you know what you eat has a direct effect on the way you feel? Nutritionists say that depressed people should eat a balanced diet of complex carbohydrates, low-fat protein, plenty of vegetables and fruits. Nutritionists also recommend people with depression to should reduce their intake of foods, which can adversely affect their brain and mood involving saturated fats, caffeine, trans fats, alcohol, and foods with the high levels of hormones (such as meats) or chemical preservatives. Here are some easy tips to follow a mood-boosting diet:
- Do not skip meals. If you skip meals, going too long between your meals will make you feel tired and irritable, so you should aim to eat something at least every 3 to 4 hours. Especially, if you have depression, it is very important that you should not skip meals.
- Minimize sugar and refined carbs.
- Focus on complex carbohydrates including oatmeal, baked potatoes, whole grain breads, and whole-wheat pasta to boost serotonin levels without a crash.
- Boost your B vitamins by taking a B-complex vitamin supplement or eating more citrus fruit, beans, chicken, leafy greens, and eggs.
- Eat super-foods that are can help boost mood including brown rice (thiamine and serotonin to support sociability), bananas (vitamin B6 to promote alertness, magnesium to reduce anxiety, and tryptophan to increase feel-good serotonin levels), and spinach (folate to lower agitation and get better sleep).
- Consider taking a chromium supplement. You should know that chromium picolinate helps reduce carbohydrate cravings, ease mood swings, as well as boost energy. In addition, supplementing with chromium picolinate is very effective for anyone who tends to oversleep and overeat when depressed.
- Eat foods that are rich in protein and tyrosine (an amino acid) to boost alertness: you will get foods that are rich in protein and tyrosine from chicken, turkey, and tuna. Experts say that tyrosine will help increase the levels of the brain chemicals norepinephrine and dopamine. It also helps you boost feel alert and makes you easier to concentrate. In addition, you should try to include a protein source in your diet several times a day, especially when you need to boost your energy and clear your mind. You can get good sources of healthy proteins such as lean beef, low-fat cheese, beans and peas, fish, poultry, milk, soy products, and yogurt.
- Eat “smart” carbs for a calming effect
- Eat a diet that is high in nutrients: Nutrients in foods can help support the body's repair, wellness and growth. Nutrients our body needs include minerals, vitamins, protein, carbohydrates, and even a small amount of fat. You should know that a deficiency in any of these nutrients may lead to your body not work at full capacity — and it can even cause illness.
- Fill your plate with essential antioxidants: antioxidants including beta-carotene and vitamin E can help combat the effects of free radicals. Sources of beta-carotene are cantaloupe, carrots, apricots, broccoli, collards, pumpkin, peaches, spinach, and sweet potato. Sources of vitamin E are nuts and seeds, margarine, wheat germ and vegetable oils.
Learn more: The Healthy Way Diet book – this book covers a wide range of healthy and nutritious diet plans.
43. Add Omega-3 Fatty Acids To Your Diet
Many researchers indicate that omega-3 fatty acids have innumerable health benefits. According to recent studies, scientists reveal that a deficiency of omega-3 fatty acids is linked to depression. They say that people who eat a small amount of omega-3 fatty acids will have a higher risk of major depressive disorder than people who usually have an omega-3 fatty acid intake. In addition, in other studies, scientists show that people who do not frequently eat fish (fish is a rich source of omega-3s), are more likely to have to suffer from depression. Sources of omega-3s are: canola oil, fatty fish (salmon, sardines, anchovy, mackerel, shad, and tuna), flaxseed, soybean oil, dark green leafy vegetables, walnuts and nuts.
44. Get Plenty Of Vitamin D
A national study in 2010 found that the likelihood of getting depression is higher in individuals who have a deficiency in D vitamin compared with individuals who are sufficient in vitamin D. In some other studies, researchers from the UT (University of Toronto) noted that individuals, who were suffering from seasonal affective disorder (one of types of depression), tended to increase their vitamin D intake in the body. These people reported that they had some significant successes in reducing symptoms of their depression.
45. Eat A Mediterranean-Type Diet
Nutritionists encourage depressed people to follow a Mediterranean diet. Because it is a healthy and balanced eating pattern that includes plenty of vegetables, cereals, fruits, legumes, nuts, and fish.
According to a Spanish study that uses data from 5,459 women and 4,211 men, researchers found that the rates of depression tended to rise in men, especially smokers who had a decrease in their folate intake. However, the same increase also occurred for women who were not physically active or smoked, and who had a decreased intake of vitamin B12, another B-vitamin. This was not the first study to find out an association between depression and these two vitamins. Many researchers wonder if poor nutrient intake may lead to depression or if depression can lead people to eat a poor diet. They also recommended that both women and men should follow a Mediterranean diet because it includes a wide range of folate rich foods such as nuts, legumes, and dark green vegetables.
46. Do Exercise Regularly
Exercising is one of the best methods for dealing with depression. Experts say that when you are depressed, exercising can be the last thing that you feel like doing. However, you should know that exercise is a powerful tool that assists you in dealing with depression. Actually, researches indicate that doing a regular exercise may be as effective as antidepressant medications at boosting energy levels and lowering feelings of fatigue.
Although scientists have not figured out accurately why exercise is considered such a potent antidepressant, evidence proposes that physical activities trigger the new cell growth in the brain, boost endorphins and mood-enhancing neurotransmitters, reduce stress, and alleviate muscle tension. In short, physical activities can bring you all things that have a positive effect on your depression include:
- Increase the body temperature that can have calming effects
- Reduce the immune system chemicals, which can worsen depression
- Release feel-good brain chemicals, which may ease depression (endorphins and neurotransmitters)
In addition, exercise has a lot of emotional and psychological benefits too. For example, it can help you:
- Gaining confidence
- Getting the body in shape
- Making you feel better about your appearance
- Taking your mind off worries
- Getting you away from the cycle of negative thoughts
- Getting more social interaction
- Giving you the chance to socialize or meet with other people
- Coping in a healthy way
- Managing anxiety or depression
Here are some types of exercises, which are better for depression:
- Golf (walking instead of using the cart)
- Gardening (learn more: Top 15 Home Gardening Tips For Beginners To Beautify Home Gardens)
- Jogging at a moderate pace
- Housework, especially mopping, sweeping, or vacuuming
- Playing tennis
- Low-impact aerobics
- Walking activities
- Swimming exercises
- Yoga (learn more: 24 Health & Beauty Benefits Of Doing Yoga)
- Yard work, especially raking or mowing
Many psychologists also claim that the strong social support is very important for anyone with depression, so joining a group exercise class will be beneficial. In addition, you should exercise with your partner or a close friend. In other words, you will benefit from emotional comfort, and physical activities and you will know that other people are supportive of you.
47. Take Care Of Yourself
Another way for dealing with depression is to take care of yourself. It means that you should follow a healthy lifestyle, learn to manage your stress, set your limits on what you are able to do, adopt healthy habits, and then schedule fun activities into your day. Here are some simple ways to take care of yourself:
- Aim for 8 hours of sleep. Experts say that sleep problems may cause depression. Therefore, whether you are sleeping too much or too little, your mood suffers. You need to get on a good sleep schedule by applying healthy sleep habits.
- In addition, you should expose yourself to a little sunlight each day. Doctors advise that lack of sunlight will make your depression worse. So, you should make sure that you are getting enough. You can take part in some simple activities in the morning such as: have your coffee outside, take a short walk outdoors, enjoy an al fresco meal, sit out in the garden, or people-watch on a park bench. Aim for at least 15 minutes of sunlight a day to boost your mood. If you live somewhere with little winter sunshine, try using a light therapy box. (Learn more: Top 30 Positive & Side Effects Of Sunlight On Human Body)
- Avoid activities that may cause stress
- Take a daily relaxation practice. Using practice relaxation techniques can help you alleviate symptoms of depression, ease stress, and promote feelings of joy and well-being.
- Take care of a pet. Pets can bring you joy and companionship into your life. They also help you find less isolated. You should take care of a pet to give you a sense of being needed. (learn more: 13 Reasons to Own A Pet for Children)
48. Do Things You Enjoy (Or Used To)
If you cannot force yourself to experience pleasure or have fun, you can do something you used to enjoy. For example, you can pick up a sport or a former hobby you used to like. You can express yourself creatively through art, music, or writing. You can go out with friends or take a day trip to the mountains, museums, or ballpark. In addition, psychologists also recommend that people with depression should push themselves to do things, even when they do not feel like it. They will be surprised at how much better they feel once they are out in the world. Even if their depression does not lift immediately, they will gradually feel more upbeat and even energetic as they make time for fun activities.
49. Challenge Your Negative Thinking
Depression will make you put a negative thinking on everything, involving the situations you encounter, the way you see yourself, and even your expectations for the future. However, if you only think positively, you cannot break out of your pessimistic mind frame. Experts say that wishful thinking or happy thoughts will not cut it. Therefore, you need to challenge your negative thoughts to replace them with more balanced thoughts. Here are some simple ways to challenge your negative thinking:
- Think outside yourself
- Allow yourself to be less than perfect
- Socialize with positive people
- Keep a “negative thought log”
50. Start Small And Stay Focused
The key to get a depression recovery is to begin with some small goals and then slowly build from there. Experts indicate that you should start with small things and stay focused. For example, you can draw upon any resource you have. Although you cannot have much energy, you can have enough energy to take a walk or even pick up the phone to call someone you love. Psychologists advise that you should take things one day at a time and then you will reward yourself for each accomplishment. Although the steps can seem small, they will quickly add up. In addition, for all the energy you use to put into your depression recovery, you will get back much more in return.
51. Identify Whether You Have Depression
Before dealing with depression, you should make sure you have common symptoms associated with depression. Here are some basic symptoms of depression:
- Do not have ability to function normally in everyday life
- Have lethargy, fatigue, and lack of energy (Recommended reading: Top 10 Natural Remedies For Fatigue And Depression)
- Have feelings of anxiety or emptiness, persistent sadness
- Cry uncontrollably
- Feelings of self-blame, worthlessness, and a lack of self esteem
- Sleep more or less, or experience insomnia
- Unusual weight loss or gain, appetite loss or overeating
- Be difficult to focus
- Inability to make clear decisions
- Pessimism, or feeling of hopeless, pointless and futile
- Suffer from body pains, headaches, cramps, digestive problems, and other aches that do not go away with medications or treatments
- Be irritable or restless
- Have suicidal thoughts or thoughts about dying
52. Ask Your Doctor To Explore Medical Causes Behind Your Depression
Finding causes of your depression will help you have effective plans for dealing with depression. Researchers say that some causes of depression result from, or are the side effect of medical treatments or conditions. In a lot of cases, medical conditions may trigger depression. It is every important for doctors to identify any physical cause for depression, which requires specific treatments or to remove other reasons for your depression. Here are some common medical conditions, which might trigger depression such as:
- Vitamin or mineral deficiencies, especially for people on restrictive diets (learn more:
- Hormonal imbalances, Thyroid problems, hormonal imbalances (such as pre-menstrual) and disease.
- The side effects of some medications
- Addictions to alcohol and other drugs
- Co-existing illnesses such as OCD, social phobia, post-traumatic distress disorder, heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, and Parkinson's disease.
- Genetic links to depression
- Having premenstrual syndrome (PMS), post-partum depression, and premenstrual premenstrual dysphoric disorder
53. Sleep Well
Another way for dealing with depression is to sleep well. Sleep is very essential to a balanced and healthy body. Experts say that lack of sleep may aggravate negative thoughts and easily becomes the vicious cycle whereby your negative thinking will keep you awake and make you disable to get enough sleep. Feeling tired and waking unrefreshed is a common complaint during depression. In addition, experts also recommend that too much sleep may leave depressed people feeling tired. To break this cycle, you need to enforce you a strict sleep routine of the same waking time and bedtime every day. You should avoid caffeine and alcohol, and limit exercising 3 hours prior to bed. You also should remove anything distracting from your bedroom and keep your room at a suitable temperature.
Learn more: The Top 18 Best And Worst Foods For Sleep
54. Restore Any Neglected Grooming
Scientists say that depressed people often pay no attention to their appearance and clothing. Another way for dealing with depression is to reintroduce daily attention to grooming to help improve their mood and give them a sense of well-being. For example, they should get new clothes or a new haircut as part of cheering themselves up. They also should concentrate on the parts, which they love about themselves instead of fretting over what they do not like.
55. Maintain A Good Support Network
Do you know support from people who care about and love you is a very important part of your healing process? You should tell people you trust that you are depressed and you would appreciate their sympathy and understanding. It is far harder for other people to help you if you are secretive and you do things, which seem inexplicably strange. Experts say that knowing will help other people to support you as best they can. Here are some ways to maintain a good support network:
- Find a good therapist or doctor to work with
- Tell family and friends to get a support from them
- Be honest about your reclusive and irritability behavior with those people you trust
56. Be Around Positive People
Experts say that talking with colleagues, friends, and family who are good to be around or who make you feel good. You should spend time with those people who see the world in a positive way. With these people, you can ask them to share their ideas, visions, as well as approaches to life with you. You should know that most positive people can be happier to uncover the things, which help them keep happy and upbeat about their life. You should learn from them. You also need to avoid people who have negative thinking about their life.
57. Keep Occupied
Being busy is a good way for dealing with depression and preventing negative thinking from going around your head over and over again. Here are some ways you can use:
- Do a hobby you enjoy or think you will enjoy
- Take care of pets. Pets need to be fed, groomed, as well as played with, so it can be very satisfying for a depressed person.
- Introduce structure into your everyday life. You can make a schedule of what you will do every day.
Learn more: Online Grooming School Course – this course will teach you how to take care of your pet
58. Find Your Own Pathways To Emotional Wholeness
There are many possible ways for dealing with depression and there are a lot of tips and advice available to help you. Nevertheless, the most important thing you should have is the ability to look deeper inside yourself and then find what really will work for you. To have this ability, you need to keep a diary of your recovery process in order to assist you in identifying the best approaches and then building on those.
Learn more: 11 Forgotten Laws course – this course will help create a balanced and prosperous life for you
59. Accept That Depression May Return
Many researchers indicate that once you are affected by depression, you can have a higher chance of returning it in your life if you do not manage its causes well. To help you prevent depression from coming back again, you need to recognize the warning signs and then take constructive actions to cope with it earlier on before it begins. You also need to aim to minimize the impact and duration of depression.
60. Talk With Other People Who Are Experiencing Depression
Another way for dealing with depression is to tell with other depressed people. When you have passed through depression, maybe you have ability to help other depressed people to work through it too. You should reassure them that what they are experiencing is real, worthy of treatment and tell with them that there is the light at the end of the tunnel. This will help you live more positively and prevent depression from recurring.
61. Think All Things Are Possible
You do not have to know how you can receive your desires as well as you do not have to figure anything out. You only need a rest, and know that the possibilities will unfold. For dealing with depression, you should specifically remind yourself that it is possible for you to: feel well emotionally and physically, be prosperous and fulfilled, and have joy, love, and peace in your life. When you do this, you will get excited as you anticipate the changes and miracles to come.
Learn more: End Limiting Beliefs book – a guidebook that teaches you how to think positively
62. Participate In Enjoyable Activities
Experts say that enjoyable activities will help you deal with depression more easily. Some things you can do are: spend time with friends, call a friend or family member, meditate, listen to music, read books, do a hobby that you love, watch your favorite television show or movie, take a hot bath, or treat yourself to which you have been wanting. In addition, spending time in nature will help you ground yourself in the present moment. It will give you an inexplicable peace and joy, which will surprise and rejuvenate you. I can go for a walk or to the lake or sit on your porch that has a beautiful view of the most wonderful trees.
Learn more: 177 Best Action Movies Of All Time
63. Focus On Self-Love
Some ways for dealing with depression are to become patient and compassionate with yourself. This will help you release perfectionist standards, and remind yourself of all your wonderful talents and qualities. It also helps give yourself encouragement and praise. Experts say that doing a self-love meditation will be especially uplifting and comforting for you. You talk to yourself as if you would to tell someone else that you want to express love to yourself. You will feel amazing to give yourself what you want and need.
To see all information relating to depression and other conditions, go to our main Home Health page.
After reading my overview of 63 tips for dealing with depression alone naturally without drugs, I hope that it helps you understand more about depression as well as find out the best ways for dealing with your depression. I also show you healthy diet plans for depression, as well as natural sources of some vitamins that are good for your depression. This post is part of a series about tips and advice on how to treat some common diseases and conditions. Got a question? Need answers? Leave a comment below. Now are you ready to use these tips for your depression or for depressed people you know?
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