Can I Beat Depression?

Depression is the most treatable of all mental illnesses, and with a few simple daily lifestyle choices, you can beat depression. First, to beat depression acceptance is critical. Learn the symptoms, and understand that these negative thoughts and feelings is the depression speaking for you. Understand that you must make changes, and seek help. Depression is not a weakness; depresses afflicts millions of Americans every year, and is a common illness and if you face your disease, seek treatment you can beat it. Second, seek help. This can be difficult at times, expensive too, but even a simple examination by your doctor can rule out physical abnormalities that could be causing or contributing to your depression. Your physician can also refer you to a psychiatrist. However, get the examination; many treatable illnesses can cause depression. One you have determined that there are no physical ailments contributing to depression, then to beat depression you have to change how you feel. This may require antidepressants, depending on the severity of the depression, and the symptoms. Even with antidepressants, I believe to beat depression some form of cognitive therapy is necessary. Cognitive therapy is nothing more than changing how you think, to change how you feel. Distortions in thinking are what cause depression. These distortions are broken down into 10 categories.

  1. All or Nothing Thinking – Seeing things in black and white, perfection or failure
  2. Over-generalization – Negative event triggers belief one in endless pattern of failure
  3. Mental Filter: One focuses and dwells on a negative detail until everything looks dark
  4. Disqualifying the Positive – The person does not count the positive – only the negative
  5. Jumping to Conclusions – One anticipates negative results without basis in fact
  6. Magnification or Minimization – Magnifying mistakes, while minimizing successes
  7. Emotional Reasoning – Person asses that negative feelings reflect reality
  8. Should Statements – Constantly using "shoulds" and "should nots" for motivation
  9. Labeling and Mislabeling – One mistake leads to thoughts of being failure, loser, etc.
  10. Personalization – Feeling you're cause of negative event when had no role.

You might see these patterns of thinking, and a revelation has stuck. Knowing is half the battle now on to the real fight. You have to replace the negative patterns of thinking with positive ones to beat depression. How do you do that? A professional can help with cognitive therapy, but there are many practical tips to beat depression naturally. Talk to yourself positively, keep doing it even when the depression hits you the worse. Keep telling yourself that these feelings will not last. Say goodbye that you enjoy life everyday; make a mantra that you can repeat of positive thoughts and experiences to counter the negative thoughts. Fight them with positive thoughts. Maybe even visualize picking up the negative thought and kicking it out of your mind before replacing it with a positive thought, but just keep believing, and saying, and thinking that the day will come when you'll feel better. Laugh, laugh and laugh, watch a show that makes you laugh, ride a roller coaster if that makes you laugh, write funny articles, draw funny pictures, but laugh. Laughter is one of the best prescriptions you can give yourself to beat depression. Volunteer, the simple act of giving will make you feel better. In addition, it will get you out in public with people. Exercise, take a walk, try yoga, swim or go for a bike ride, but exercise. The chemical reactions that occur within your brain are instant antidepressants and will give you a boost immediately. If your walking outdoors the sun will also help beat depression. In conclusion, you can beat depression with the proper knowledge and help, from the medical community, your friends and family and most importantly yourself.