Seven Ways To Deal With Your Depression

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It has just been announced, after a study by a team from King's College Hospital, that depression is now the biggest reason for people claiming long-term sickness benefit in the UK, having taken over from musculoskeletal problems such as back problems. The research shows that 176 million working days were lost because of depression in 2003. Depression now affects 1 in 5 of the population, with most people using various types of medication. Most people would like other types of treatments, such as 'talking cures', but there is a huge shortage of such therapies or therapists in the NHS system.

The aim of this article is to highlight 7 things that anyone with depression can do to help themselves. This is not meant to be instead of any treatment you may be having, rather, these are things you can do in addition that will help you to regain control of your life as quickly as possible.

1. Change Your language
2. Focus on a better future
3. Stop blaming yourself
4. Stop telling yourself you are a failure
5. Have a safe moment every day
6. Have a fun moment every day
7. Get reading

These may seem simple, and to some of you may seem difficult, but the more you practice these 7 things, the more you will help yourself to get over your depression. I want to say a little bit about each of these things, so you know exactly what I mean.

1. Change Your Language

The language we use expresses how we understand ourselves and our world. Too much language around depression is the language of the victim or is the language of a war. Indeed, put them both together and you can be a depression war victim. Stop saying things like, 'I suffer from depression'?', or 'I am going to beat this damn illness.' Change you language to one of experience, if you have to use language at all. If you stop telling yourself you are a suffering victim in a battle, you will stop being one.

2. Focus On A Better Future

This can be a tough one, for depression is so often about the inability to see a great future. But, too much depression is actually about a morbid focus on the past and what went wrong, and this will only make you feel more depressed. Start to daydream what you would like your great future to look like, or build up a scrapbook of lots of photos and ideas about what it will look like. Think about or write down how you would like to feel in this glorious future.

3. Stop Blaming Yourself

Most people with depression go through the blame thing. You will start to blame yourself for being weak, not being able to cope, letting friends and family down and that sort of thing. Apart from the fact that it is wrong, blaming yourself for your depression is about as useful as blaming yourself for the weather ? and I'm sure the really depressed among you might have even done that! But seriously, there is nothing to blame yourself for; your only job is to deal with your depression and get your life back on track.

4. Stop Telling Yourself You Are A Failure

When depression strikes, apart from blaming ourselves, we often combine this with the belief that we are failures. I have failed at my job, my life, my relationships and so forth. Many of you might see depression itself as some sort of failure to cope. Again, this is not true, and neither is it helpful. You have not failed just because you've got depression, and the more you tell yourself that you are not a failure the more you will begin to believe it.

5. Have A Safe Moment Every Day

Depression makes us feel unsafe. Feeling safe is essential to good health and well- being, so it is important to practice feeling safe again. You need to find something that you can do, that you know that you can do without thinking ? something you feel safe just doing. It could be cooking, reading, making something, writing or whatever. Once you have found something that you feel safe doing (or several things) you then need to make sure you do this for at least 30 minutes a day. At first it may seem pointless or difficult, but very soon you will start to feel much safer again, and therefore much better.

6. Have A Fun Moment Every Day

One of the most damaging things about depression is that it takes the fun out of life. This may seem trivial until you have had the fun removed, then you know what a serious business it is to have fun. Life feeling safe, it is important to establish a fun moment every day in order to practice having fun again. So, as with the feeling safe, you need to think of some things that are (or were) fun for you, and start to do them for 30 minutes a day. It does not matter how silly your fun thing is, and it doesn't matter if it doesn't feel like fun at first. Give it a chance, and those feelings of fun will begin to return.

7. Get Reading

There is an old saying that knowledge is power, and in terms of depression this is absolutely true. It is important to understand what depression is, and what it is not, so start to read some good books about it so you know what you are dealing with. But, even more importantly, there are millions of people that have had depression, got over it and built wonderful new lives, and many of them write about it in magazines and books. Start to read inspirational stories about how other people have dealt with their own depression and see what you can learn from them. Reading can also mean listening or watching as you will also find great stuff on the radio, television and in some films.

These 7 things are not a miracle cure, but I do know from my own experience that they will help you to transform your depression. The problem with depression is that it is like a prison and it is very easy, and sometimes actually easier, to just stay put in this bleak and depressing place. These few things will help you to unlock the door of that prison, walk out and throw away the key.

Remember that depression is now a very common complaint, so you are not alone. The more you practice these 7 things, and embed them into your life, the more you will start to regain control of your life. Depression is a temporary phase, and you have the tools to create a new and wonderful life. Good luck.

Rick is a licensed master Practitioner of NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming), and the developer of the unique, From Mess to Success coaching programme. He runs workshops and works with people on a one-to-one basis, helping them to heal and transform their lives. He suffered from manic depression and agoraphobia for 7 years. He has been totally cured for over 10 years.

Rick's unique combination of skills and experience, both professional and personal, combined with his work as a highly successful guide and coach make him supremely qualified and experienced to help you create the life you want and deserve.

Further details can be found on his website at:

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