Below you’ll find a list of tips I’ve created to help me get through my own bouts of depression. I sincerely hope this post helps someone out there! I’m not a medical professional, just a depressed millennial trying to navigate life.
1. Antidepressants can only do so much. They’re great, don’t get me wrong, but antidepressants alone won’t fix you. Find a qualified psychiatrist and therapist that will help you come up with a plan to become the best version of yourself.
2. Remember, you’re not alone. I’m right there with ya! We depressed people need to lift each other up.
3. Remain active. Whether it’s light stretching, getting some steps in at work or around the house, or simply getting out of bed. You’re still remaining active and that’s all that matters. I’m proud of you.
4. Surround yourself with supportive people. If you don’t have supportive people in your life, get new friends. Know that I support you and your path to wellness and while you’re at it, check out 7 cups—a free, anonymous, and VERY helpful online resource with trained listeners, therapists, and counselors.
5. Get out of bed. I know your bed might feel like a safe haven, but it’s not. Remember #3? Get out of bed because the world wants to see your beautiful face!
6. EAT. One summer, I lost 15 lbs because I simply lost all motivation to take care of myself. It was a dark time and I was out of energy, my blood work was a total clusterfuck, and I looked AWFUL. Depression will hollow you out mentally and physically but don’t let it! If you need to set small goals for yourself like focusing on what you want to eat, do it. If you need to have your groceries delivered because the thought of dodging a bunch of assholes at Meijer, Safeway, or Publix makes you want to vom, do it. Low blood sugar and rapid weight loss will make you feel like a piece of gum on the sidewalk. If you’re experiencing food insecurity, please reach out to your local department of health and human services, 2-1-1, or use this helpful food finder from Feeding America.
7. SHOWER. Seriously, those around you will thank you. If you don’t like to shower, take a nice long bubble bath and invest in some bath bombs to enhance the experience.
8. Have a good cry. It’s nothing to be ashamed of. Carry tissues and extra makeup with you so you don’t look like a raccoon after.
9. Ask for help. Please, please, PLEASE ask for help.
10. Call your insurance company or bust out your laptop to see what they cover under mental health care. After you’ve done this, call around to see what offices are accepting new patients. Zocdoc is also great if you have confrontation issues like me and hate talking to people on the phone. (If you don’t have insurance, check out this website to find free mental health care near you or contact your local department of health and human services if you think you may qualify for Medicaid. Need low-cost prescription refills? Check out Wal-Mart’s $4 Prescription List or GoodRX to see low-cost options near you.
11. Limit your time with people who drain you.
12. Ditch fake friends. BYE FELICIA.
13. Forgive yourself.
14. Don’t be embarrassed. Mental illness is WAY more common than you think. Here’s a list of famous people who struggled/struggle with mental illness.
15. Remind yourself that Churchill led a country while battling depression.
16. Depression will lie to you and tell you what others are thinking. DO NOT SUCCUMB. You are loved, you are worthy and you belong on this planet.
17. Put that sad book/movie/news article down.
18. Do a technology detox. Why is Facebook so damn depressing lately??
19. Remind yourself that this is TEMPORARY. It can and WILL get better. You’ve got this. I believe in you, I support you, and I want you to know that you make the world a better place.