The Cure for Depression | lostconfessions's Blog

Contrary to the post title, the sad truth is that there really is none. Despression is complex - there are many "causes". Personality types and learned cognitive practices, brain functioning, life experiences, genetics(?), social and economic factors. It is hard to put forward a single cure when the cause is not strictly known.

Yet, there are ways of "coping" and "managing" that can alleviate the symptoms. People who want to manage need to come up with solutions that suit themselves, depending on their own views of what is wrong.

1. Visit a Doctor
The first step is to get help. I dont believe medication is the answer to depression. It might provide temporary relief to the symptoms, but the causes most likley remain. but this does not mean that medication cant help. When things are going bad, the first step is to stabilise the situation - get things under control - before attempting to make everything better. Medication can help to do this.

2. Talk
This is so difficult, but not as difficult now as it used to be. Talking means giving vent to your thoughts. Getting other people's thoughts on things can help you challenge your own thinking. Have you ever tried to defend one of your negative thoughts to someone? It is hard. It is hard because your negative thoughts are usually build on false premises and illogical argument. An intelligent and rational person will pick holes in your arguments straight away, and help you realise that perhaps there is usually more than one way of looking at things.

You can talk to anyone you wish whom you think will listen to you. You can talk to someone face to face, or call a helpline even. You can go into any of the many forums on the internet for people suffering from depression. Depression is a recognised medical condition; and there are so many sufferers, you should never feel ashamed of talking about your thoughts and feelings.

Or you can blog too. Its another form of talking in my eyes.

3. Therapy
The way we think is ingrained into who we are. Changing thinking habits and bahaviours is extremely difficult, but just like any habit, it CAN be changed. You will just probably need help. Cognitive bahvioural therapy is an extremely useful way of tackling negative thinking patterns. But any therapy helps - therapy gets us talking, and can help us find out what our root problems are.

4. Tackle Problems
Depression can very often be caused by stressful life experiences that we feel we cant deal with. We tend to bury our heads in the sand and let things slide, hoping the problems will go away. But they rarely do. They keep getting bigger and bigger. And this puts us under more and more pressure.

Perhaps making a list of problems might help you focus? List all the problems you have and rank them in order from the biggest to the smallest. Then take the top 3. Make a list on what you think you need to do to solve these problems. Make the items small and achieveable.

For example, if your biggest problem is debt, dont write "pay off all loans". This is the end goal. Instead, you need to think of ways of allowing you to do this. The first thing might be to get advice from a free debt crisis centre. Contact your debtors. Make arrangements with them. Cut back on your spending. keep all your paperwork filed in one place.

Try to do one small thing everyday that will contribute towards solving the problem. All these little things add up, The problem starts to get smaller. You feel better empowered and positive about finally getting rid of the problem. Hence, hope is born.

5. Raise Self Esteem
Self-esteem has a huge impact on our lives. And low self-esteem can magnifiy and worsen feelings of depression and negative thoughts. But the way we think about ourselves has developed over many years, and changing this is diffuclt also.

But there are ways. And these involve taking action to make us feel better about ourselves.

Setting and achieving goals raises self esteem. As does congratulating and rewarding ourselves when we do something right.  Our self esteem rises when we know we can rely on ourselves. We become more confident in making our lives a nicer place to live. We realise that it is not how other people look at us but how we look at ourselves that is the most important thing.

One fault we make is always looking at what we have to do, rather than looking at what we have done. That is why, very often, when I make a list of things to do, I dont delete the items I have done. Rather, I tick them off or cross them out. That way, I can sometime focus on what I HAVE done rather than what I HAVENT. I feel better about myself.

6. Relax
People like me never seem to be able to go for a moment without thinking about myself and my problems. It takes up all my focus and energy, leaving me feeling drained and tired. Yet, there are things I like doing that sometimes helps me forget.

I like reading and watching movies. I like computer games and going shopping. I like leaving work early sometimes to beat the traffic whilst listening to the radio. I love comedy shows, and music.

Sometimes, taking time out helps me relax and get away from things for awhile. My mind becomes distracted by things other than itself, and I get a break from my life. I feel better afterwards, and have a bit more energy to keep going.

it is important that we reward ourselves from time to time for doing what we do everyday - keeping going.

7. Live Healhily
Probably the one I fail at most. But the importance of this cant be overestimated I think.

Our body has a tight relationship with the mind. Abuse the body, and the mind suffers too.

There is no secret to living healthily. It involves taking a little exercise, and cutting down on rubbish foods. It involves shaving, showering, brushing our teeth and wearing clean clothes. It involves having a nice tidy workstation, car, house, bedroom. It involves cutting back on tobacco, drugs and alcohol. it involves getting rest and a good night's sleep.

Living healhily raises our self-esteem. It improves our perception of who we are. It makes our bodies function more effectively, more easily, which can improve our brain function too. A well rested person sitting in a comfortable chair in a warm and well lit room will always function better than a tired one who is sitting in the fallout from last night's drinking session.

There are hundreds and thousands of books written on the subjects listed above. i dont pretend I have read many of them. i could write a blog on every item on the above list. But really, there is little point. Inside myself, I KNOW what I am doing wrong, I KNOW what I need to do to put things right, I KNOW I am not doing those things. I dont need a book to tell me anything.

But it is sometimes nice to sit down and take stock. Try to focus on the positive. I have experienced little shafts of light today in an otherwise dark place. Tomorrow might be a worse day than today. but then again, it might actually be better =)

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Previous Posts
The Slab, posted February 23rd, 2013
Troubles, posted February 23rd, 2013
Learning How to Say "No", posted January 10th, 2013
One Week In, posted January 8th, 2013
An Experiment in Change, posted January 3rd, 2013
Dealing With Break Up, posted January 2nd, 2013
Getting Rid of Stuff, posted December 30th, 2012
OMG, posted December 29th, 2012
The Cure for Depression, posted November 16th, 2012
The Anatomy of Depression, posted November 16th, 2012
What Does Unlucky Mean?, posted November 13th, 2012
Unlucky Stars, posted November 13th, 2012
Happy, posted October 23rd, 2012
2012 so far..., posted October 12th, 2012
Cost/Benefit..., posted October 12th, 2012
Realisation, posted October 10th, 2012
I wish I could stop thinking, posted September 28th, 2012
Emptiness, posted September 27th, 2012
Letting Go, posted September 24th, 2012
Positivity, posted September 19th, 2012
Change, posted September 18th, 2012
Chameleon, posted September 16th, 2012
Visualisation, posted September 15th, 2012
A Further Development, posted September 12th, 2012
The Simple Truth, posted September 11th, 2012
Why am I Hurting So Much?, posted September 11th, 2012
Fall Out, posted September 9th, 2012
Come Down, posted September 8th, 2012
/ragequit, posted September 8th, 2012
Insane in the Membrane, posted September 7th, 2012
Lost, posted September 6th, 2012

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