Coping with depression is tough, but there are a few things you can do to help make it easier.
Watch the video above to hear Kristen’s tips, or read the written summary below.
1. Reach Out For Help
Reaching out for help is the number one thing — tell someone that you're depressed. If your depression is affecting your ability to function in your everyday life, it's time to go to a doctor, therapist, or someone who you trust and say, "Hey, I'm not doing well — I need help."
2. Keep a Journal
Next you need to find out why you are depressed. Everyone is different so don't compare yourself to somebody else. What is making you depressed?
One of the main things that helped me in my beginning stages of recovering from depression was journaling. My therapist told me that every time I feel bad, or anxious, or like my depression’s coming on, write about what's happening.
Where are you? What are you feeling? What are you thinking? Who is with you? What is causing this anxiety or this depression to come on? Write it all down, so when you bring it to your therapist or your doctor, you can pinpoint exactly what is triggering you.
3, 4, 5. Exercise, Eat, Sleep
Take care of yourself. Take care of your body — you only get one. You need to exercise, you need to eat, and you need to sleep. I know when you're depressed you don't want to any of those things, but you have to push yourself to do them.
Exercise is amazing for depression. And you need to eat three meals a day, because if you don't eat, your body is going to get tired, you're not giving it the right nutrients, and this is not going to help your mental state.
And then sleep. I know it can be hard to sleep when you are depressed, but consider going to bed earlier than you usually do, and try to get at least six to eight hours’ sleep. These things are really going to help you in the long run with your depression.
6. Surround Yourself With Positive People
Do not surround yourself with negative people. If you have negative people in your life who are causing you this depression, then you need to separate yourself from them.
7. Create a Support System
A support system is a person or a group of people who support you, and those are the people you go to when you start feeling triggered or sad, to vent to them or to go out and do something fun with. You need those people.
8. Do Things You Enjoy
Find a hobby that you like. Draw, paint, color, go hiking, or cook — anything you enjoy doing.
9. Keep Busy
Keeping busy is really important in recovery, because if you're busy, you're not thinking about these negative thoughts and negative things in your life.
Like I've said before, depression is a roller coaster ride. Sometimes you have good days, and sometimes you have bad days.
The last thing I want to say is don't let depression be the end of you. You have a future, you have a path, and you have a purpose in this life. And it doesn't end with depression. You are strong enough to cope with this.