Greetings and Salutations, Blog Readers!
Today we are talking about things you can do to help fight depression, and the depression spells, when you feel them coming on.
Often, as we get better at navigating our mental unwellness, we end up slowly learning how to recognize these “spells”. In my case, I can often feel depressive spells come on, and, I have gotten pretty good at riding them out, nearly surfing the wave of sadness like a giant sad wave in the ocean of emotion.
In my case, I will feel the waves start to come, and that’s when I have to start acting. It will start with some intrusive thoughts and increased anxiety, coupled with body aches, lethargy, and apathy, accompanied by a little bit of anger, normally from the anxiety. These little things will present in small ways, and as I get older and get better at navigating the emotions, I have learned to not only spot them, but keep them from spilling onto anyone else.
I find this is important, because many of my friends are neurodivergent and none of us want to hurt anyone else. Unfortunately, sometimes when you do, it can trigger other people’s mental unwellness, and since I know that others splashing on me can cause my own mental health to suffer, I try to keep myself from splashing on them.
When I start to retreat, I quickly work on turning my emotions into something more useful. Often, radical self care is what I turn to. Most recently, I felt a large spell coming on (the one I am currently writing through), and I began to work on my apartment.
Depression loves a messy home.
I did my linens, washed my clothes, unpacked my suitcase, dusted, cleaned my AC filters, fluffed pillows, did dishes, swept, mopped, cleaned my sinks…any little project I could find that would increase the overall cleanliness in my home, all while keeping my mental health in better shape.
Cleaning can not only give you a sense of accomplishment, it can give you a healthier place to be depressed in, so your depression won’t start compounding. That second part is crucial for getting out of the depressive wave.
I also force myself to do good things for my body, including drinking lots of water, aiming for a gallon a day but guaranteeing I at least drink my eight glasses, and adding some stretching and yoga into my routine.
This spell of depression is also accompanied by the terrible back pain I picked up recently, from tweaking my back pretty badly, and a little PMS, the latter of which has at least been mitigated by the BC pill I am on- all of this to say some stretching and yoga has been wonderful for the aches and pain, to say nothing for its beneficial elements on my mental health.
Additionally, moving your body, doing good things for your body, can largely help the depressive spells. I find doing something like yoga helps on two fronts, one, the physical element of moving your body, and the second is the peace of mind the breathing and movement can bring you. A third, final element I could mention, although it may be specific to me, is that when you work out, or do something good for yourself, like yoga or eating a salad, you are telling your brain “I am worth this care, I am worth this effort” and this radical self-love can boost your mental state as well.
On this topic, grab some food that is good for you.
Sure, you may want the cheese covered carbs, goodness knows I do, but, before you dive into that treat, get yourself to eat a salad, some veggies, some sort of fruit, and then dig in. Or at least mix up some sort of vegetable into the mac n cheese or whatever your comfort food item is. This will also give your body nourishment, while also telling your brain, “this body, this brain, this person, is worth healthy, good, nourishing food.”
It may seem silly at first, but showing yourself radical self-love in every way possible, giving yourself the very best in your self-care routine, can help level the lows that come with a depressive spell, and can trick you into thinking you are taking a few days to treat yourself, versus turning into the sad recluse that it really ends up being like.
Sure, not everyone is the same in terms of mental health, but for me, someone who is a fairly seasoned hand at depression, these methods help lower the depressive spell, if implemented when it starts to go down.
Also, don’t neglect things you love and bring you joy. In my case, it’s writing and video games while binging zombie content.
So,I have written blogs, worked on a short story, and written a tiny bit in Flake City Volume Two. I have also played a little World of Warcraft with my friend Kenny, and that also helped boost my mood a little bit.
Sometimes killing monsters does that.
The writing also serves to make me feel good about myself. You see, in our society we are constantly told to make our hobbies profitable, to hustle more, etc etc, but the byproduct of that (which I will be discussing in future posts, surely, but have also discussed in posts about writing content that make you content and brings contentment) is that we hate ourselves for being lazy. If you do something you love, even if not for material gains, you are at least telling your brain that you have done something, that you did something for you, something you enjoyed, and something productive. You didn’t just sit around watching depressing stuff, you took action and did something. Even something like playing video games is more than sitting around doing nothing, and you can make yourself feel better for the efforts you took to make yourself happy…plus doing stuff you enjoy tends to make you feel better, and goes hand in hand with radical self-care.
Anyways, I am not saying doing all of these things will magically stop your depression. I am saying that for me, doing these things can help lessen how rough the depressive spell is, and, are the exact things I am doing to mitigate my own depressive spells.
I hope this helps, and be sure to reach out to a medical professional or suicide hotline should the spell be too bad, this blog is not the answer to suicidal thoughts, so please, if they are bothering you, get help. We all need you in this world, and if no one has told you that, then you CAN let this blog serve as that. I want you here.
So, use these tips if they help, seek more help should you need, because YOU ARE WORTH IT.
Thanks for being here, for existing, and of course, for reading.
PS- If you are suffering from desires to be unalive, please – call in National Suicide Prevention Lifeline- Hours: Available 24 hours- 800-273-8255.