Simple Steps to Overcome Depression

By Ali Jan Qadir

My experience with depression and anxiety is something that I rarely speak about. However, I think it may be beneficial to share my store with others so that they may benefit from my experience and use some of the strategies that I used to help them overcome it too.

There was a time in my life when I used to be very depressed, and occasionally I even felt suicidal. I had lost my path, my focus, my drive and my direction in life; that's how I used to feel. I took medicine to reduce my depression, went to psychologists to get me on the right path but nothing seemed to work. I felt that the psychologists made my situation worst and all the medicines that I took were a waste of time too.

Simple Steps to Overcome Depression

The reason for my Depression

My depression began when I moved interstate for love. I relocated from Massachusetts to California to be closer to my long-time boyfriend. I met Jack, when he used to live in Virginia and I was there on a vacation with my family. After keeping up a long distance relationship for about 2 years I finally made the 2555-mile move all the way to California to live with him. The first months were so much fun; it felt like an extended holiday.

Then, when my mother came to visit my feelings about the move changed dramatically. It was really noticeable when the time finally came to take her to the airport to fly back to Massachusetts. I had an extreme, intense feeling of unbelievable misery. It hit me like a tonne of bricks! When she went back home things felt so final. Suddenly, I started to think that I made a huge mistake. My mom is the person I love the most, it's natural, everybody does, but I was blessed with her company before I moved to California to live with my boyfriend, but then, when she left I realised that I wasn't going to see her as often as I had previously. I had no idea when I was going to see her again because getting from Massachusetts to California was so time consuming and expensive.

As time passed after her departure I sunk more into depression as I constantly thought about my loved ones that I left behind in Massachusetts. I felt sad and lonely all the time. I often cried for days on end. This behavior used to irritate my partner and after some time we both started fighting, even about minor issues. I knew that this was more than just a case of sadness. The fights with Jack made me think that I shouldn't have left my family and moved all the way here to California. I started thinking that even the person I left everything for is unable to understand my situation and that he doesn't love me anymore. This made me feel even worse even though it wasn't the case. The truth was however, that he didn't think that at all, it was my depression that made me think like that.

Definition of Depression

I knew that whatever was happening was not normal; feeling unhappy and crying all the time. Since my intense grief was brought on by my move I thought that I was just a bit lonely and homesick. However, after doing some research and taking some assessments online, I discovered that I was experiencing depression.

Depression is more than just feeling down and sad for a period of time. It is actually when the feeling of sadness stays for longer than a few days and affects how you function every day. Depression is like an ordinary illness but it can become a serious problem if not treated properly.

The Symptoms and Signs of Depression

The symptoms of depression which I experienced were low energy, loss of interest in any kind of activities, need to be alone doing nothing, body aches, fatigue, loss of appetite, chronic headaches, feelings of hopelessness, feelings of pessimism, irritability and excessive sleeping. The symptoms of depression vary from person to person. Some people, like me, sleep excessively while others suffer from insomnia. Some mornings I even found it difficult to get out of bed.

My partner had difficulty understanding what I was going through and that made it even more difficult for me. Nevertheless, even though he was irritated at times, he stood by me like a rock and gave me the love and comfort that I so badly wanted and needed. If he wasn't there for me I think I wouldn't have been able to overcome my depression. He has done so much for me, taking me to psychologists, and researching natural ways to overcome these feelings of depression.

How I Overcame Depression

I knew I had to do something about my condition because if I didn't do anything I may have ended up doing something more serious. So, to help me start to battle my depression, I started doing a few important things every day.

Go for a long walk and spending time with nature

Exercise and walking outdoors are the best things to do for people going through depression. Exercising and getting out in nature really helped coping with my depression. Just letting your soul and body sync with nature makes a huge difference to how you feel. You start feeling better automatically!

Allow the sun to warm your skin

A couple of years ago, vitamin D supplements were being used to help protect people from many ailments such as depression. Well, later on it turned out to be only part of the answer. The fact is that people who eat plenty of fatty fish like wild salmon and spend most of their time outside have higher levels of vitamin D and a very low incidence of depression. So is it their lifestyle or Vitamin D? I say, simply don't go for just supplements, spend more time outside in the sun and relax. Believe me it really works because I experienced it myself.

Read a good book

I suggest you read, 'The Mind-Body Mood Solution'. This book has helped me several times during my dejected bouts. It taught me how to get to the genuine issue rapidly and change my viewpoints. It's really worth reading!

Eat healthy

Overeating or eating low-quality food seriously nourishes the cycle of depression. Every time we eat low-quality food we feel bad and then it gets more difficult to pull yourself out of the 'hole'. Some foods which you should eat because of their mood-improving ingredients include, walnuts, dark chocolate and wild-caught salmon. I used to try all of these and they not only taste good, but also assist with overcoming depression.

Simply learn to love yourself

I used to treat myself as a precious being that I love, adore and care the most about. It is a good idea to pamper yourself regularly with massages, flowers, baths, naps and shopping trips. Get exciting gifts for yourself. I did these things and as a result felt much better about myself.

Laugh as much as you can

Laughter is the best medicine! This old saying really is true! Watch silly and crazy comedies online and on TV. You will certainly feel good. When I used to watch comedies I would forget about the problems in my life, would simply enjoy the show, and would feel better for quite some time afterwards too.

Meditate and sleep properly

Meditation really helps. In fact, it's the most powerful remedy to get you out of depression. Meditate for 15 to 20 minutes daily before going to sleep. It helped me forget everything negative, and brought relaxation and so much positivity to my life.

Finally, just remember that after the darkest storm the rainbows come out. Just try all of the above mentioned ideas, and trust me, you will overcome depression very soon.

Author Biography:

Ali Jan Qadir is passionate about art, food and fitness. He loves to shares things he has learned by experience. He is a contributor for The Best Mattress where he answers questions like what is the best mattress? If you want to learn more about him visit his twitter profile: @alijanness.

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