We all either have or know someone who has depression. Unfortunately it’s a common symptom of today’s world…but despite the frequent appearance of depression in our lives…it taboo to discuss or know how to help.
It’s can be uncomfortable when someone you care about is feeling discomfort in their lives, especially when you don’t understand what they are going through. So as someone who personally deals with depression…here’s a few things you can do to help when you are feeling helpless.
- Listen. This may seem obvious, but it’s how you listen. Listen to their feelings and validate how they are feeling…even if it seems irrational. Trust me…I can guarantee they already know it’s irrational…but that is how they feel despite knowing that. Validate before you try to talk them out of it. Another important thing to note is sometimes you just need to listen to the silence. Just be there with an open ear…even if they don’t speak. It means a more than you know.
- Don’t force them to talk or go too far out of their comfort zone…temporarily. Ease them into it. What may seem easy for you at the moment may feel desperately impossible at the moment for them. Be patient 🙂
- Check on the simple things. Have they eaten, taken a shower, or opened their curtains in the past 24 hours? It may seem insignificant…but when you are in a bad space of mind…basic self care goes out the window…and someone reminding them…can help. Don’t bully…just check in.
- If you feel unable to help…ask what you can do. Can you get someone they feel more comfortable with? Can you grab a sandwich for them? Can you just sit and watch a movie with them? You might not get a straight answer from them…but if you listen or observe closely…what they need in the moment will become clearer.
- If they have a safe family member (non toxic and close to the person) let them know what is going on. It’s awesome to have a small army to protect you when you are feeling down.
How to Help Yourself:
- Drink water. It always helps…doesn’t hurt ya too much.
- Have you eaten in the past 24 hours? If not go make yourself something easy to make you grub. You’re body needs energy…even if you are laying in bed.
- Go outside for five minutes. you don’t have to do anything except walk out the front door for five minutes.
- Watch or read something that makes you smile or laugh. Seems silly…but sometimes a healthy distraction helps a bit.
- Chat to someone. A friend, family member. A stranger on tumblr. Don’t lie to me. at one point, if you are depressed, and between 12-27 years old…you had a tumblr.
Help the deep plunges into sadness:
- Drink water. I know…annoying…but it’s true.
- Feed you body happy food. Full of nutrition. Whole foods…lots of fruits and veggies!
- Get moving. You don’t have to exercise 4 hours a day. But moving your body whether it be yoga or a nightly walk…wakes up your body!
- Stay social. I am not saying be a party animal…but keep in touch with one or two people. Don’t isolate yourself.
- Try to communicate before you explode. It’s a personal difficult thing for me to accomplish…but talk about your feelings when you can bring yourself to. It helps a bit. Therapy does have the right idea…and if you can’t afford a therapist…find your own therapy whether it be in a journal or a friend.
That’s all I got for today. I hope this can help anyone with a friend or themselves…it was a blog similar to this that helped me…so I hope to pass it on.