By Preeya Narcis
The emotional hangover post holidays is real. And so is the depression that tags along.
According to Haley Moore - Clinical Social Work/Therapist, and American Psychiatric Association “Depression is an illness that negatively affects how one thinks, feels, and acts. Depression is different for everyone, but often presents in both physical and emotional symptoms that differ from one’s regular functioning and mood. The impacts of depression on an individual can range from mild to severe”
Depression can affect anyone no matter their age, race, religion or sex. It’s a worldwide issue that affects many people. We already stepped into the new year and people who are already suffering from a mental illness are going to feel a lit bit worse. Something as simple as weather change can affect someone's mood drastically. But the new years is a time for reinvention and making some new goals for yourself and to help improve your mental health.
1 - Exercise
When you are suffering from depression exercising is not something you want to do but it really helps. Exercising can release endorphins that can act as a natural antidepressant. Just 30 minutes of working out every day helps improve your mood and takes your mind off current worries. Exercising can also decrease health problems like high blood pressure, diabetes and arthritis.
“Activities such as breathing exercises, mindfulness exercises and meditation can be short but impactful, as well as healthy lifestyle choices in terms of eating, exercise, and sleeping habits.” - Haley Moore
2 - Unplug
It’s good to take time off your phone, tablet or laptop and have time to yourself. Social media is a place where anyone can post anything, that includes some negative content. Put away your electronics for an hour each day, turn off all notifications and find other ways to entertain yourself, like painting or reading a book. By taking time to yourself and doing your own thing, instead of worrying about incidents that have nothing to do with you. Take care of yourself because you need to be your top priority.
“Incorporating more time for individual relaxation and self-care is very important in a healthy balanced lifestyle, and can improve outcomes for people who are dealing with depression. “ - Haley Moore
3 - Communicate
When suffering from depression it’s very hard to communicate what you’re feeling but it’s always good to have a support system. By keeping your emotions bottled inside and not voicing your wants or concerns, you can leave yourself physically and emotionally drained. Dr Patrick Corrigan - Professor of psychology stated “Once you’re out, it’s hard to go back in, but the important thing is that the majority of people who come out and tell their story feel more empowered.” Whether it’s a family member, friend or counselor talk to someone you feel comfortable around and who you trust.
4 - Do Nice Deeds
Sometimes doing random acts of kindness can, not only make someone else's day but your own. By doing good deeds you are able to warm your own heart and it makes you feel good about yourself. By helping others it allows you to spend time focusing on others, it reminds you that there are so many people in this world and everyone has problems just like you. You are not alone in this world, and trying to brighten someone else's day will brighten your own in the process.
There are so many more resolutions that someone with depression can take up, these are just a few of them. But when creating resolutions there is one common theme you must me mindful of : your resolutions should be realistic.
Haley says: ” I think the best type of resolution that someone experiencing depression can incorporate is something manageable and realistic. Someone in this position does not need a goal that they are not able to reach. Seemingly simple resolutions can take a lot of extra effort and determination for someone who is experiencing depression, so making resolutions that are achievable is the best advice I could offer”