Last update: February 15, 2020
Contrary to popular belief, just having willpower and gritting your teeth isn't enough to overcome depression. It requires the use of various tools to help us in this process. When we are faced with an increasingly frequent problem, such as depression, it is important to go to a psychologist so that he can help us get out of the abyss in which we find ourselves.
The functions of a psychologist in this sense are varied. First of all, it will take care of making a diagnosis of depression; secondly, even if he cannot prescribe drugs, he can direct the patient to someone who can outline a pharmacological treatment, which is very useful especially in the early stages of therapy; finally, he will be able to establish an action plan or psychological treatment appropriate to the patient and accompany him in its implementation, making changes based on progress.
However, we all know that depression is not a state in which one is particularly prone to make changes or acquire new habits, maintaining them over time and making them effective. The will is decisive, but so are the intelligence, the action plan established by the specialist or the drug treatment.
Depression goes away when we take strength from where we have none, to be able to take small steps in the right direction, but which is so difficult to achieve.
We can isolate ourselves, but it won't solve anything
Depressed people feel particularly tempted to acquire new habits that fuel depression itself. One of these is to isolate oneself from others. They don't want to see anyone, they are constantly sad and they are completely indifferent to the gym, to painting courses, to music ... to everything they loved before, motivated them, made them feel full.
Perhaps this moment of pause and withdrawal can be positive in some cases and for a certain period of time. Especially when depression appears as a result of a prolonged period of stress. However, in the long run, eliminating these "melancholy" habits is essential to overcome depression.
Overcoming depression is possible when we begin to do the opposite of what depression itself leads us to do. Don't we want to go out? We go out with friends. Don't we want to play sports? Let's get up very early and without thinking we take the bag and go to the gym or run in the middle of nature. Once you have taken the first step, it will no longer be so tiring, on the contrary it becomes a pleasant activity. Maybe not like before, but this makes it even more valuable.
The important thing is to get out of that cycle to which inertia leads us or into which we have already fallen. We have discovered that it makes no sense to continue like this, that nothing changes, everything remains the same if we continue in the same direction.
Learning to meditate, relativizing problems, managing emotions, looking for sources of reinforcement are tools that a psychologist can provide us if we want to overcome depression.
One of the solutions to overcome depression is to start introducing different habits or recovering the ones we liked and have abandoned. There are some that it may be better not to catch up, like listening to songs we don't like anymore. But there are many others that we continue to like and for which we don't make the effort they would require. An effort that seems like a mountain to us in the face of the few forces we feel we have.
Going to the gym and talking to strangers or acquaintances, going out with those friends for whom we always had some excuse, starting to eat healthier (practicing the so-called mindful eating) and doing moderate exercise are all important elements with which to overcome the depression. Because? Simply because they facilitate the creation of moments when we feel better.
Keep an emotional journal to overcome depression
Very good. We know that depression will begin to go away when we recover or seek activities that make us feel good, facing ourselves and exercising willpower to recover activities we enjoyed or to find new ones that we may enjoy. But what else?
We have seen that one of the hallmarks of depression is that it tends to promote introspection. He tells us: "Hey, you are in crisis!" and it plunges us into a state where it seems easier to think. Well, we can take advantage of it for try to get to know each other better and to put our emotions in order. Yes, our internal order is not working, so let's see how and look for a new one.
In this sense, writing can be very good for letting off steam and also to keep track of our emotional ups and downs. It also allows us to go back to our words to find out what we keep going wrong and be more aware of the situation we find ourselves in.
Many professionals argue that writing is therapeutic and they are certainly not wrong. Sometimes we can't or don't want to tell anyone what's happening to us, but we still need to communicate in some way. Keeping an emotional journal is very important and not just when suffering from depression or other problems. Making it a habit will do us a lot of good.
At first it will be difficult for us to look at those pages where we have captured all our pain. But over time it will become a necessity to feel, relive and heal. Until the time comes when we can turn the pages as if we were reading a book, recovering the memories of a lived situation that is now in the past.
"Victory is always possible for the person who refuses to stop fighting"
At this point we know that overcoming depression is possible when we change certain habits. The road will be difficult, long and often we will stop advancing and, indeed, retreat. However, if you try and try again, swimming against the current, with the support of a psychologist, the depression will end. Because depression also dies when we eliminate all the sources that feed it.