Thursday, February 3, 2011

Ten Practical Steps to Feeling Human Again

Depression tends to make us feel less than human, yucky, forsaken, and miserable. Here are ten effective, simple, free steps you can take today, tomorrow, and the next day that will help bring you back into the realm of the living again. Notice I’m not promising that these are easy steps. In fact, some of them may feel nearly impossible, but you can take them one at a time. These steps do work, however; I know because I’ve had to take them myself.

1. Get out of bed. Pull the comforter up as soon as you get out in order to lessen the temptation to climb back into it. Yes, I did indeed put the hardest step at the beginning.

2. Take a shower and get dressed.

3. Step outside for a few minutes and soak up the sun. Or at least open the shades and turn on the lights in the house if it’s precipitating outside. Better yet, walk around the block.

4. Read Psalm 77.

5. Drink water. Its life-sustaining properties will refresh you. Don’t worry, I’m not telling you to give up caffeine. I’m not qualified to do make such proclamations.

6. Eat at least one fruit and one vegetable. Ditch the chips and the sweets.

7. Tell yourself, “I can homeschool my blessings today.” Write it on a sticky note and post it on your mirror if you can’t force the words past your lips.

8. Don’t compare yourself with anyone else. Comparisons are deadly to your self-esteem.

9. Focus just on today. Not yesterday. Not tomorrow. Just today. You can take the steps on this list today.

10. If you truly have not been able to manage most of the above steps for six weeks or longer, call your doctor and make an appointment to discuss your symptoms.

This article is posted over at Heart of the Matter Online today. Check out their ongoing series about depression.

Photo taken by my daughter when she was overseas a few years ago.