How to Beat Depression and Anxiety Naturally
Being depressed can leave you feeling weak and dependent - you're not. Although it might not seem like it, there's a lot you can do on your own to overcome depression. Changing your overall behavior toward certain things -- your physical activity and lifestyle -- are all great weapons against depression.
If you're ready to make some change and you're prepared to commit, these tips will help you feel better.
How to Overcome Depression
COME UP WITH A ROUTINE
If you're suffering from depression or anxiety, try coming up with a routine or pattern for your days. Depression has a way of dismantling the structure of your life. Setting a realistic daily schedule can help you stay on track and grant you a sense of responsibility.
Depression may have you feeling like you can't achieve anything. There is a way to push back from these clouding thoughts. To fight back, set goals (daily & weekly) for yourself- it doesn't matter how small. Make it something that you can do in a day, like cleaning the backyard or the kitchen. Over the course of the week, try adding more challenging daily goals like head to your local store to physically buy the groceries or, better yet, see a movie.
Exercising temporarily releases feel-good chemicals, also known as endorphins. Routine exercise stimulates the brain to reconnect itself in positive ways. The benefits of this rewire? Optimism, confidence, and you feel good about yourself. Now, how much of it do you need? We'll let you figure that out, but consistency is the key. Just walking or jogging a few times a week can help - for now.
WHAT YOU EAT MATTERS
There is no supernatural diet that magically lifts depression. That being said, watch what you eat. If depression tends to make you overindulge, getting in control of your eating may help you start feeling better. Studies have found evidence that certain foods with omega-3 fatty acids like salmon and tuna and folic acids, such as spinach and avocado, could help alleviate depression.
GET SUFFICIENT SLEEP
Depression can make it hard to get a healthy amount of sleep, and sleep deprivation can worsen depression. Fight back by making some changes to your schedule and lifestyle. Take all the distractions out of your room - no laptop and no TV. Try going to bed and wake up at the same time every day for three weeks. Don't take naps - at least try not to. Watch how your sleep improves over a month.
TAKE ON RESPONSIBILITIES
Depression may have you feel like pulling back from life and giving up all responsibilities at work and even home. Being involved can help you maintain a sense of belonging that can help overcome depression. Responsibilities ground you and give you a sense of achievement. If everything feels like too much, consider volunteer work.
DON’T GIVE IN TO NEGATIVE THOUGHTS - CHALLENGE THEM
In your battle against depression, a lot of the work remains purely mental -- improving how you think, rewiring your brain to think better. Being depressed makes you leap to the worst possible outcomes.
Logic is your friend! The next time you're feeling bad about yourself, use logic as your weapon against these thoughts. For instance, you feel like no one likes you, but why is that? Is there any real reason for that? You feel like the most useless person on the planet, but is that statistically likely? It might take some practice, but you can beat back those negative thoughts and feelings.
TRY A SUPPLEMENTS
There's promising evidence for certain supplements to help beat depression. Those include fish oil, folic acid, and CBD.
CBD oil does not have any cognitive effects like those of THC. There is no feeling of being high. You may feel calmer and more relaxed. Depending on the dose, your level of relaxation may vary. While it is true that CBD is still in the process of being studied, it is a product that has been researched for decades already.
CBD has been linked to numerous health benefits over the years, and more people are turning to it now more than ever. From calming anxiety to reducing pain to treating acne, CBD has shown positive results over the years. Always check with your doctor before committing to any supplement, especially if you’re on medications.
TRY SOMETHING NEW
Depression puts you in a rut. Push yourself to try something different - something new. Go to a park, the movie theater, volunteer at a hospital, take a creative writing class.
TRY TO HAVE FUN
Make time for things you enjoy. If you find that nothing is fun anymore - don't. That's just the depression talking. You keep trying new things or rekindle your connection to something you enjoyed doing before. Try reaching out to old friends, go out for dinner. In time, happy things will feel pleasurable again.
The ancient saying “practice makes perfect” is certainly true for this case. The first time you try some of these routines, it may feel awkward or feel pointless. Depression is not going to let you go that easily. Performing them regularly, however, is the solution to overcoming your anxiety.
Lastly, try to understand your depression. Get to the root of what is causing your anxiety to flare as much as it does. Only then will you know exactly how to manage it. If these tips aren’t cutting it, try reaching out to a local therapist about different alternatives you can explore.