4 Things To Do When You're Depressed
Today is one of those days. I knew it was coming the night before. Anyone who regularly battles depression knows the feeling oh too well. Despite looking at things logically (you're alive, healthy, have great people in your life, live in a great environment, etc.), this cloak of despair begins to smother you.
But depression isn't logical. It doesn't entertain that realm. It has its own agenda, and listens to no one. I guess I could blame a deal with a well-paying potential client falling through at the last minute, but this isn't my first rodeo.
Or the fact that I said yes to an open mic tonight earlier in the week, which I haven't
had put in the time to write new material for. I really need to rethink this comedy thing.
It's likely nothing more than a chemical imbalance that a little time can't fix. Again, this isn't my first rodeo. Last night, I was asleep by 8:30. Granted, I was tired from helping my girlfriend move the night before, but also just didn't want to be conscious for what was coming.
All told, I slept nearly 12 hours. It was glorious. However, although I knew my body got plenty of rest, I just didn't want to get up and face the day. I could easily still be sleeping. Instead, I said fuck it, and followed the depression protocol...
Stick To A Routine
Whatever your routine is, don't stray from it. Depression wants to throw it off course. It wants you to close off the outside world, and function inside a turtle shell. Say no. By 8:30, I rolled out of bed, did 20 minutes of meditation, made breakfast, and did laundry.
Because my dryer takes 4 hours to completely dry a load of clothes, had I stayed in bed, there's a good chance I wouldn't have had any clean clothes in time for the comedy show I'm going to bomb at.
Do Something Positive
Whatever mind state you're in, you're going to gravitate towards similar things. I made the mistake of opening up Facebook, and traveled down this shitty news rabbit hole. 10 minutes later, it ended on a story about a guy being ejected from his car on the freeway, and landing on an overpass sign. Geezus.
Laughter is incredibly helpful. Look up some of your favorite comedians on YouTube, and watch a few clips. Do meditation. Chat with someone you love. Listen to some awesome music. Work on a passion project. If you don't have one, find one. Get the blood pumping with a workout.
Get Into Nature/The Outdoors
Living in San Diego affords me a lot of nature related activities, but I realize that's not possible for everyone.
However, here's the good news: Even light walking can help reduce depression by 47%. Whether you have access to woods, beaches, trails or not, just getting outside helps.
Know It Will Pass
When depression sets in, it can send you down this spiral of thinking that it's never going away. In a way, that's true. It's not humanly possible to be 100% happy, 100% of the time. You will have more bad days in the future. Just know they will pass, and stick to the protocol.
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