Finding Solutions for Depression and Memory Loss
If you begin working towards improving your memory by addressing your memory exclusively, you will be frustrated with the little progress you make. Since your memory problems are stemming from depression, this must be the target.
To target depression:
- Adjust your thinking: Problematic depression is related to faulty ways of thinking. By thinking in negative ways, your feelings will be more negative and further fuel depression. To adjust your thinking, you must actively produce positive, optimistic thoughts and repeat them with consistency. This process begins to change your perceptions and allows for more hopeful thinking, which produces better feelings.
- Modify your behaviors: If you think depressed thoughts, you’ll feel depressed. If you engage in depressed behaviors, you will feel more depressed, so change your actions. By exercising more, spending time with friends, going on new adventures, and other novel activities, you will break out of your rut. Start slow and build consistency.
- Call in the professionals: If changing your thoughts and behaviors seems too challenging, look into professional treatment. A therapist can create a treatment plan specifically for your needs. Worried about the cost of seeing a therapist? Many options are available for people with and without insurance coverage.
These depression-focused strategies will produce good results in many situations, but some ongoing memory issues could remain. Perhaps they came from another source or persist due to permanent changes.
With these situations, memory-focused strategies will be more helpful.
Build Listening Skills
A simple way to improve your memory is to ensure the information is received accurately in the first place. This requires attention and focus from you, which can be practiced and improved upon. Try to:
- Avoid distractions like loud noises, other people, and electronic stimulation. Make listening your only objective.
- Make eye contact with the person to fully engage in the conversation.
- Repeat back the message to ensure that you understand it correctly.
Since you’re not going to remember everything everyone tells you, use some assistive tools and techniques to aid your abilities. Writing information down is a basic place to start, but using voice memos or apps will help the technologically savvy.
Accepting your poor memory will help with both depression and memory loss. Once you fully understand your limitations, you can tell others about your poor recall.
This will force them to interact with you differently and change their expectations. Rather than them (or you) being disappointed and frustrated, they will be pleasantly surprised when your memory serves you well.
Depression has found another way to disturb your life: poor memory. Whether it is from stress, executive functioning, or mood-dependent learning, depression will do its damage.
The cause is not lost, though. If you can address your mental health while taking steps to improve and modify your memory deficits, you can minimize the damage. By acting early and identifying the culprit, your memory can be preserved.