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How To Ward Off Depression


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#1 Guest_ChristineE_*

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 06:16 PM

Now, to start, I realize I haven't got many friends here. And I realize most of you think I'm in the wrong as far as my entire view of the world goes. But still, I hope these tips might help some of you who are also depressed. I would give this advice to any and all of my dearest friends were they suffering from it. And, for the record, I follow ALL of this advice myself.

Let us begin.

Firstly, melancholy is much like a river. When you are trapped in the middle of it, you can surrender completely, allow yourself to go under, and let the current take you wherever it wants to. But that's probably a very bad idea because you'll drown. Or, you can fight it tooth and nail, with violent strokes, swimming as hard and fast as you can against it. Also probably not a good idea because if all the thrashing doesn't cause you to drown, you will at least wear yourself out! Or, alternatively, you can swim against it gently. Smooth, even strokes, slow movements, calmness. Don't exert much energy, but keep moving, calmly. In this manner you'll find you're not drowned and staying afloat, and also not tired. You're treading water rather than drowning in it.

1.) Music. Being an amateur Opera singer myself, I happen to adore music, especially classical. As it would happen, classical music and even Opera is great for when you're feeling woeful. Actually, almost any sort of contemporary music, too, can help, provided that it strikes a chord with you and that it's not too loud and raucous.

2.) Art. Surround yourself with stimulating, bright, pleasing things to look at. It does not cost much to pick up a cheap copy of a classical painting of, say, ballerinas, or flowers, or a Paris cafe at night. Statues and gardens, too, improve one's mood greatly. And at the very least, it costs nothing to look up such pictures on Google and look at them for a while. I have classical art in my bedroom, which is where I spend most of my time.

3.) Atmosphere. I would recommend going to a museum at least once a week, not just for the artwork, but because most museums have lovely formal gardens which immediately stimulate all the senses and revive the spirit. Spend a couple hours there simply taking things in. If you have not the means of transportation or the money to afford such outings, do what I do and spend time out-of-doors at a park within walking distance or even your own backyard. I personally spend a couple hours each day on a wooden swingset in my backyard, listening to classical music on my iPod. If you can, try not to allow yourself to brood too much whilst there. Focus instead on the gorgeous atmosphere.

4.) Self-improvement. Depression often leads to feelings of worthlessness and inadequacy. Counter this by working to do things of which you can be proud. Learn to sing a new aria, paint a picture, (Even if you're terrible with a brush and must use paint-by-numbers) tend to a rosebush, write a novella or even a really heartfelt blog post. Anything which you both enjoy doing and which can be used to improve upon a skill will do here.

5.) Don't sulk too much. It might be difficult, but it is wise to take a few hours a day (perhaps the hours that you spend outside in the park and working on that painting?) and make it a point to focus on something other than your melancholia. Engross yourself in the beautiful nature, or in your art. However...

6.) Allow yourself to be upset. Conversely to what some people may tell you, you ARE entitled to your feelings. If you need to, it's fine to let yourself deeply feel your sorrow from time to time. Let yourself weep if you need to. But don't berate yourself if the tears won't come. Instead, take a few deep breaths and follow any of the other tips here for a little while. You will eventually be able to release your emotions when the time is right.

7.) Be around cute things. Pets particularly. It is incredibly difficult to feel sad when you have a fluffy bunny or kitten in your lap, now isn't it?

8.) Refresh yourself. I indulged in an ear candling today. That's when someone sticks a candle in your ear and lights it on fire. Trust me, it's worlds more relaxing than it sounds. But if that isn't your thing, go to a local spa and have a steam bath, a mud bath, a facial, a seaweed scalp scrub, anything really. If you can't afford that simply fill up a bubble bath with sweet scented bubbles. I highly recommend a drop or three of essential oil in your bath, especially lavender and rose absolute. Aromatherapy is excellent for depression.

9.) Sleep well. . Take sleeping pills if you must; depression can produce insomnia. Try to get around 10 hours of sleep nightly, but never more than 12. Lying around in bed literally all day will probably make you feel worse. Of course, it's fine to do relaxing things during the day, but at least be upright while you're doing them.

10.) Eat well. Diet affects mood. try not to eat things that are too sweet or too spicy. Porridge is good. Really, it is. Really. Also fruit. I happen to like pineapples and I should eat more of them. And stay hydrated. I've taken to drinking alkaline water, and tea with cream and stevia. Juices and milk too
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#2 Blue elephant

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 06:23 PM

Exercise (half an hour walk each day)is wll known for relieving depression.

Getting out in the sunshine regularly helps as well, especially if your depression is the winter sort.

Setting goals for yourself that are not too high and not too low is good. ie things that you can achieve if you put an effort in, but are not impossible.

See the connection between Christianity and that last one? Setting up impossible goals for yourself - leads to feeling of failure and the depression that seems to beset so many Christians (even though most are reluctant to acknowledge how common this is among the Christian flock).
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#3 mymistake

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 06:29 PM

Now, to start, I realize I haven't got many friends here.


I would say you have lots of friends here. You just don't have any "mentors".

And I realize most of you think I'm in the wrong as far as my entire view of the world goes.


Most people have a world view that is mostly wrong. The human brain is constantly evolving but it is a slow process.

But still, I hope these tips might help some of you who are also depressed. I would give this advice to any and all of my dearest friends were they suffering from it. And, for the record, I follow ALL of this advice myself.

Let us begin.

Firstly, melancholy is much like a river. When you are trapped in the middle of it, you can surrender completely, allow yourself to go under, and let the current take you wherever it wants to. But that's probably a very bad idea because you'll drown. Or, you can fight it tooth and nail, with violent strokes, swimming as hard and fast as you can against it. Also probably not a good idea because if all the thrashing doesn't cause you to drown, you will at least wear yourself out! Or, alternatively, you can swim against it gently. Smooth, even strokes, slow movements, calmness. Don't exert much energy, but keep moving, calmly. In this manner you'll find you're not drowned and staying afloat, and also not tired. You're treading water rather than drowning in it.


Depression is a disease.

1.) Music. Being an amateur Opera singer myself, I happen to adore music, especially classical. As it would happen, classical music and even Opera is great for when you're feeling woeful. Actually, almost any sort of contemporary music, too, can help, provided that it strikes a chord with you and that it's not too loud and raucous.

2.) Art. Surround yourself with stimulating, bright, pleasing things to look at. It does not cost much to pick up a cheap copy of a classical painting of, say, ballerinas, or flowers, or a Paris cafe at night. Statues and gardens, too, improve one's mood greatly. And at the very least, it costs nothing to look up such pictures on Google and look at them for a while. I have classical art in my bedroom, which is where I spend most of my time.

3.) Atmosphere. I would recommend going to a museum at least once a week, not just for the artwork, but because most museums have lovely formal gardens which immediately stimulate all the senses and revive the spirit. Spend a couple hours there simply taking things in. If you have not the means of transportation or the money to afford such outings, do what I do and spend time out-of-doors at a park within walking distance or even your own backyard. I personally spend a couple hours each day on a wooden swingset in my backyard, listening to classical music on my iPod. If you can, try not to allow yourself to brood too much whilst there. Focus instead on the gorgeous atmosphere.

4.) Self-improvement. Depression often leads to feelings of worthlessness and inadequacy. Counter this by working to do things of which you can be proud. Learn to sing a new aria, paint a picture, (Even if you're terrible with a brush and must use paint-by-numbers) tend to a rosebush, write a novella or even a really heartfelt blog post. Anything which you both enjoy doing and which can be used to improve upon a skill will do here.

5.) Don't sulk too much. It might be difficult, but it is wise to take a few hours a day (perhaps the hours that you spend outside in the park and working on that painting?) and make it a point to focus on something other than your melancholia. Engross yourself in the beautiful nature, or in your art. However...

6.) Allow yourself to be upset. Conversely to what some people may tell you, you ARE entitled to your feelings. If you need to, it's fine to let yourself deeply feel your sorrow from time to time. Let yourself weep if you need to. But don't berate yourself if the tears won't come. Instead, take a few deep breaths and follow any of the other tips here for a little while. You will eventually be able to release your emotions when the time is right.

7.) Be around cute things. Pets particularly. It is incredibly difficult to feel sad when you have a fluffy bunny or kitten in your lap, now isn't it?

8.) Refresh yourself. I indulged in an ear candling today. That's when someone sticks a candle in your ear and lights it on fire. Trust me, it's worlds more relaxing than it sounds. But if that isn't your thing, go to a local spa and have a steam bath, a mud bath, a facial, a seaweed scalp scrub, anything really. If you can't afford that simply fill up a bubble bath with sweet scented bubbles. I highly recommend a drop or three of essential oil in your bath, especially lavender and rose absolute. Aromatherapy is excellent for depression.

9.) Sleep well. . Take sleeping pills if you must; depression can produce insomnia. Try to get around 10 hours of sleep nightly, but never more than 12. Lying around in bed literally all day will probably make you feel worse. Of course, it's fine to do relaxing things during the day, but at least be upright while you're doing them.

10.) Eat well. Diet affects mood. try not to eat things that are too sweet or too spicy. Porridge is good. Really, it is. Really. Also fruit. I happen to like pineapples and I should eat more of them. And stay hydrated. I've taken to drinking alkaline water, and tea with cream and stevia. Juices and milk too


Are we talking about mood or depression?

Those with the disease can do some things to improve their lot. Changing your environment. Being active. These things can help but they are band-aids.
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#4 owen652

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 06:43 PM

do NOT stick a candle in your ear! my wife did this and you know what happened? we lost fifteen dollars. that's all that happened. plus, it's dangerous. if you like the scent, that's cool, get some incense or something. but do NOT stick a candle in your ear.

everything else on the list is good shit though.
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#5 dyanaprajna0

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 07:36 PM

This is a good list. I want to add something though, and this is from personal experience. I was had been doubting Christianity for several years, but then I went through a divorce, which is what really pushed me completely away from Christianity. So I would say, especially to those who are leaving Christianity while going through some hardship, DO NOT, under any circumstances, drink alcohol (and by extension, use drugs). I pretty much stayed drunk during this period in my life, and I found that all it did was make things worse. And you'll end up hurting yourself more, which is the direct opposite of what you're trying to achieve.
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#6 dyanaprajna0

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 07:37 PM

"I was had" should be "I had been".
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#7 Positivist

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 11:11 PM

Stay active (at least 30 minutes vigorous exercise per day)--go for daily walks

Eat a balanced diet--don't forget fruits, vegetables and protein

Remember that alcohol is a depressant and should be avoided if you're feeling blue

Force yourself to go out with friends each week

See your physician about antidepressant medication to correct a chemical imbalance in your brain

Get psychotherapy from a registered psychologist--consider cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)

Check out Dr. David Burns' book, The Feeling Good Handbook.

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#8 BrotherJosh

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 11:16 PM

Whiskey, weed, craft beer, golfing, Jeeps, working out, learning, reading, family, friends, and completing college. Worked for me.

Again, if you are truly depressed, go see a doctor and seek counseling.
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#9 Guest_sugRsuccubus_*

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 03:18 PM

While all of these are very good ideas, and certainly are healthier ways of coping, I agree with MyMistake that there is a marked difference between feeling depressed (sad) and having clinical depression. In my experience with clinical depression, and in having very close friends who struggle with it, I have seen and experienced rock bottom. Often times, simply doing the above things can scratch the surface, but do not impact the "Markedly diminished interest or pleasure in all, or most, daily activities most of the day, nearly every day" (http://depression.ab...d/a/sadness.htm). If you have no pleasure in living to begin with, it's likely you're at a level of depression where doing enjoyable things will not ward off the symptoms of the chemical imbalance in your brain. After all, "Depression, however, is a physical illness with many more symptoms than an unhappy mood." (http://depression.ab...d/a/sadness.htm)

So, in truth, "Often the best approach involves a combination of a support system, maybe a few lifestyle changes, and professional help." (http://www.squidoo.com/805Therapy2) Though the above suggested activities may not ward off clinical depression, "Incorporating healthy eating habits, getting some exercise, learn to better manage stress and spending time with positive uplifting people is always a good starting point." (http://www.squidoo.com/805Therapy2)


Here is a very realistic list of ways to understand your depressive disorder and how to start on the right track toward dealing with your disorder: http://www.wikihow.c...ical-Depression

And by realistic, I mean least fluffy and most honest.
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#10 ConureDelSol

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 03:42 PM

Meditation...surprised no one has said this one. It doesn't even have to be long. Getting up about 20 minutes before you get out of bed and just focusing on a thought, object or your own breath can help. I'll be honest, I haven't mustered the determination to do this yet, as the idea just came to me today by way of a FB friend.

I think the tips in the OP are good if you already have sought some sort of medical treatment as well. Those activities can be more of a supplement. Sometimes some depression meds and counseling just isn't enough to deal with the daily onslaught of stress that can contribute to a depressive condition.

OH! Also, SUNLIGHT is fantastic for depressive moods. Even if the sun isn't out, having a natural light lamp around can help out a lot. Around 20-30 minutes of sunlight a day can improve your mood and also keep your vitamin D intake up!
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#11 Galien

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 04:11 PM

There are different types of depression. I have endogenous depression and existential despression. If circumstances become very difficult, I get reactive depression which, if left undealt with becomes clinical depression quite quickly. I will be on antidepressants for the rest of my life. Im one of the lucky ones who gets a permanent set of shit coloured glasses to see the world through. Personally, I think it gives me a more accurate view of reality, I don't have any hype or spin or lies to tell myself to make things appear rosy when they are not.

I think Christine has some good points and all of those things are great for lifting the mood. Strangely I find Limp Bizkit very helpful. Depression though is a deadly disease that takes many lives every year. For some of us, clinging on to life becomes a daily struggle. Lucky for me I have had no serious suicidal feelings in about two years. Bonus :)
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#12 dyanaprajna0

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 04:25 PM

Meditation...surprised no one has said this one. It doesn't even have to be long. Getting up about 20 minutes before you get out of bed and just focusing on a thought, object or your own breath can help. I'll be honest, I haven't mustered the determination to do this yet, as the idea just came to me today by way of a FB friend.

I think the tips in the OP are good if you already have sought some sort of medical treatment as well. Those activities can be more of a supplement. Sometimes some depression meds and counseling just isn't enough to deal with the daily onslaught of stress that can contribute to a depressive condition.

OH! Also, SUNLIGHT is fantastic for depressive moods. Even if the sun isn't out, having a natural light lamp around can help out a lot. Around 20-30 minutes of sunlight a day can improve your mood and also keep your vitamin D intake up!


I would have said this, but I was trying to keep any semblance of religion out of the topic. But I do agree. It was converting to Buddhism, and specifically it's practice of meditation, that helped me more than anything else. Granted, it doesn't work for all people. But it's always worth a shot. And you can practice meditation in a non-religious way. The best and easiest way is to simply focus on the breath. I can't explain exactly how it works, but it does cause, with regular practice, a great calmness to come over you.
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