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10 things that will help you feel better if you have depression

When you have depression the thought of having to go about your day-to-day routine can seem overwhelming.

When you have depression the thought of having to go about your day-to-day routine can seem overwhelming. The sadness you experience can leave you feeling drained, lacking the motivation you need to be able to perform even the simplest of tasks. But don’t worry, help is at hand. The following 10 tips should help you pick yourself up and get back on your feet:

1.Plan your day

People with depression often find that the most difficult thing is getting going in the morning. It’s worth making the effort however, as studies have shown that getting involved in any kind of activity, no matter how small or insignificant, will help improve your mood. So, if you’re lacking motivation, try making a list of things you’d like to accomplish during the day and do your very best to stick to it. That being said, try not to be overly demanding with yourself right at the start.

2.Work alongside friends

As most days you won’t feel up to doing anything at all, try to plan activities that you can do with someone else – someone that you feel comfortable with and who helps you feel better. Knowing someone else is depending on you will help you get going.

3.Make time for quiet time

If things are starting to get on top of you and you find your stress levels are going up, take a moment to reflect on and address some of the things that are bothering you. Try your best to put things back in perspective – only then will you be able to let go of the less important things. We know that letting go can be difficult, but you owe it to yourself to try.

4.Get involved in sport

Outdoor activities like group sports are the best. Try to get involved in some kind of physical activity every day, gradually increasing the intensity as you go. If you need ideas as to what kind of activity to try, why not ask your doctor for advice.

5.Cut down on the amount of stimulating substances you consume

Take special care to control the amount of coffee, energy drinks, tobacco and alcohol you consume. These substances will adversely affect the quality of the sleep you get, meaning your mood and energy levels the following day will be compromised.

6.Eat healthily

Try to eat regular, preferably five small meals a day. Make sure you’re getting enough fruit (both fresh and dried), veg, pulses, protein and healthy fats (i.e. those found in olive oil). Make sure your shopping list includes oily fish and whole grains.

7.Try meditation

This age-old technique can help you relax, while at the same time boosting your self-esteem. Ideally you should meditate once in the morning and then again in the evening. Start off with shorter sessions of around five minutes or so and gradually increase to 10, 15, 20 minutes and so on. If you’re serious about meditation, you might decide it’s worthwhile booking an appointment with a professional.

8.Talk about your feelings

Do your best not to shut yourself away. Try instead to share your thoughts and feelings with others. Letting people know how sad you’re feeling will help you stop going over and over the same negative thoughts until they spiral out of control. Your friends and family will be able to help you see things in a more positive light.

9.Make sure you’re getting enough sun

Feeling the sun on your face as you walk through the park will help cheer you up – leaving you feeling happy and relaxed. So try to take a walk in the sun once a day if at all possible.

10.Sleep well

Not getting enough quality sleep will only serve to aggravate your bad mood. It also leaves you feeling tired, lethargic and unable to concentrate. Try to go to bed at the same time every day and make sure you get your eight hours. That being said, try not to exceed 9 hours, as that can be equally detrimental.


Depression, Wellbeing, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Non-pharmacological treatments, Psychological aspects, Social Life

Author: Purificación Salgado, Journalist

Last Modification: November 4, 2016

© People Who Global, iStock.com

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