Depression is becoming more and more openly talked about, which I think is excellent. Especially during something such as depression, the last thing for that person is to feel even more alone than they already feel and make them feel as though something is “wrong” with them. Depression doesn’t make someone less of a person, it can affect men and women of all ages and genders, but tends to come up more as we get older. What isn’t being talked about are tips for handling depression other than the usual “you should talk to someone.” Which you should. Especially now with COVID and even more isolation among people, I highly recommend talking to a therapist regularly for your mental and emotional health.
- Take a shower, not a bath. Stand up and allow the water you enjoy the most to run over your skin and massage your scalp. You don’t even need to wash, just stand there for a while and relish in the comfort of the water.
- Moisturize your skin with your favorite lotion. Indulge here and use something extra special that makes you feel good. Enjoy it, massage it in, and take your time.
- Once you’re done, put on some clean, comfortable clothes and your favorite underwear of any kind. Whether this is your favorite pair of boxers or something fancy and frilly.
- Go outside, take a walk, or simply lay on your back in the grass and watch the clouds pass by in the sky. Close your eyes for a moment and focus on the noises you hear identifying each one. Find some peace in nature.
Feed Your Soul
- Blast your favorite song as loud as you can and allow your limbs to loosen. Flow with the music, sing or dance – I am horrible at both but they make me feel so good. Stop worrying about what someone else might think.
- Clean something, anything. Dust that shelf high about the couch that you have been eyeing for months or reorganize that coat closet. You can do something big, or start small.
- Make yourself a glass of cold water with a spritz of lemon or a mint leaf. Be sure you add ice to your water.
- Take a moment and make yourself a nice meal. Don’t just grab something, such as a nut bar or anything. Use this time to really make yourself a good meal, even some fresh cut veggies. But situate it on a plate that makes it look really special.
- Call someone close to you. It can be a friend or a family member, even a stranger. Call, text, IM, or have a face-to-face conversation. Get that social interaction and build relationships. At the very least, listen to them and focus on them.
- Snuggle your pet! Science has proven this releases dopamine. Cuddle them, kiss them, get on the floor and just be near them. Talk to them, even taking pictures of your pet will make you feel better.
- Get creative, write, draw, snap some pictures, knit, do anything that is artistic. It doesn’t matter if you’re any good or not, that’s not what’s important.
I know some of these things seem small, maybe even ridiculous. It isn’t about you being “good enough”, the truth is you never will be. Even at your best you simply will not be good enough for the wrong people. But even at your worst, you will be worth it for the right ones.
STAY STRONG. In case nobody told you lately, you are important, you are loved. You are worthy and you are not alone. Be kind, keep pushing on, this will pass.