Beating the Blues: 5 ways to avoid depression
We don't talk about it as much as we talk about other diseases, but you'll be shocked to know that 300 million people worldwide are suffering from depression.
Depression has no boundaries. It can affect anyone at any age. In recent times, we have heard stories about celebrities battling with depression -Deepika Padukone, Kapil Sharma, and Demi Lovato to name a few. They have spoken about their depression symptoms and got a supportive response to it.
Are you also fighting the same battle? Do you feel ‘low’ often? Don’t worry! You don’t have to surrender to depression. You can try out these five tips which will help you to be happier, more in control of your emotions, and able to cope better with life’s ups and downs.
Uplift your mood when you are feeling low and say goodbye to depression by following these simple tips –
1. Identify your feelings and emotions
There is a saying by a famous Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh - “Let’s not forget that the little emotions are the great captains of our lives and we obey them without realizing it.” In order to effectively manage your emotions and feelings, you must first learn how to accurately ‘identify’ them. When you know what's got you feeling ‘blue’ and why, talk about it with a caring friend. Once you air out these feelings, divert your attention to something positive. Take action to solve problems. Ask for help if you need it.
2. Talk and share
Do you isolate yourself when upset or irritated? If yes, then you might have to re-think over it and start talking and sharing. Confiding in a friend or voicing your struggles can lighten your burden and begin a process of saying goodbye to depression symptoms. If you don’t want to talk about it, you can simply pen down your feelings in a diary or put yourself in a social atmosphere to get your spirits high! You can also take the help of a therapist, he/she will be able to identify whether your thoughts are a sign of depression.
3. Prioritize quality sleep
An inability to sleep is one of the key signs of clinical depression. Another sign is sleeping too much. Any disturbance in sleep pattern increases tension, irritability, and fatigue in your body. Eventually, you find yourself stuck in a vicious cycle of inactivity and disturbed sleep, which may directly affect your physical health and causes mood swings. Therefore, try and sleep for at least 6-8 hours a day.
4. Limit your alcohol intake and have a well-balanced diet
A drink once in a while when you’re stressed is OKAY. But when you need alcohol every time a problem crops up, it could be a sign of alcohol abuse, which is directly linked to depression. Research suggests that nearly one-third of people with clinical depression also have an alcohol problem. Besides keeping a track of your drinking habit, take care of your diet. Low mood can change your appetite. You may tend to eat more or less when you’re depressed. So eat plenty of foods which can uplift your mood and have calming effect for e.g. foods rich in protein, omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin D, selenium, zinc, and antioxidants.
5. Be active
This could be the last thing you would like to do in a low or depressed mood. But, you believe it or not, people who are inactive are up to twice more likely to have depression symptoms than active people. The mood benefits of just 20 minutes of exercise can last up to 12 hours. If you don’t want to do exercise, engage yourself in any other activity you enjoy doing like swimming, dancing, singing, reading a book, and watching a funny TV show or movie.
Remember, feeling low, upset, or anxious is nothing uncommon. It is just a phase and it will pass on. If you feel like you want to talk about it, please do. Asking for help is a brave act and speaking to a therapist is the right step to avoid depression disease and deal with your existing feelings.