Depression Good Days: Can You Have Good Days With Depression?
There is no getting around it: depression is a menace. It will impact your life in so many negative ways that it becomes a challenge to imagine yourself without depression. Your mood is lower, your sleep and diet are shifted drastically, and your outlook on life is more pessimistic as feelings of guilt and worthlessness rise.
To be diagnosed with a major depressive episode, the symptoms only need to last for a two-week stretch of time. Many people with depression will tell you their symptoms far exceed the 14-day threshold and go on for a month or even longer. Some people report feeling depressed most of the time for years.
Even the longest rainstorm eventually stops. The harshest heat wave comes to an end. Winters turn to spring, and clouds part to allow for sunshine. The point is that nothing lasts forever, including depression.
When the rain ends and the clouds part, there is prospect for a good day to emerge. Good days may be few due to the level of depression you experience, but they will come.
The focus is on what to do with depression good days when they arrive. A good day marks an opportunity; one that shouldn’t go to waste. Do you want to capitalize on your depression good days? Here’s how:
Recognize the Signs
Some of the most important work in this area is gaining the ability to monitor your depression symptoms. Especially if your depression seems to be prevalent, you might wake up each day fully expecting to be depressed.
This expectation can influence your ability to gauge your mental health accurately. The chances are good that some good days have slipped by you because you were so certain you were depressed.
If you can’t remember the last good day you had, you may want to speak to your treatment team to shift your thinking and ensure you don’t have persistent depressive disorder, which is a low-grade, long-lasting form of depression.
Several times during the day, take a moment to gather an inventory of your functioning. How are you feeling? What is your energy level? Is your self-esteem higher or lower?
Asking these questions can give information about where you are, and when you track this information, you can track trends regarding where you were and where you might be going. The information might show that tomorrow is likely to be a better day than today, allowing you to prepare for the best.
Set Your Goals
Goal setting is hard for most people. For people with depression, it can seem like an exercise in frustration. Why set goals if you have no chance to complete them?
The truth is that a good day will come, but if you are caught without a plan, your added motivation and energy will be wasted on your regular behaviors. Sure, resting and watching TV makes sense if you aren’t feeling your best, but when you are feeling good, these actions will only lead to future guilt and regret.
Next page: caring for your body and mind on your good days