Living with depression can be a challenging and often debilitating experience. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide and affects approximately 264 million people globally. 

Coping with Depression

How We Treat Depression

Coping with Depression

While the symptoms and severity of depression vary from person to person, it can impact every aspect of an individual’s life from their mood to energy levels, motivation, and ability to function day to day. People with depression have feelings of sadness, despair and emptiness that persist for long periods of time. 

Depression also affects people’s ability to concentrate and make decisions, leading to difficulties in all spheres of life. Many individuals also experience physical symptoms of depression such as chronic pain or fatigue. 

With these symptoms and challenges, people with depression often struggle to get things done. Everyday tasks that might seem simple to others can feel overwhelming and exhausting. However, it is possible to develop strategies to help manage these challenges and accomplish what needs to be done with depression treatment. In this blog post, we will explore some tips for living with depression and getting things done.

Break tasks down into smaller steps

When facing a task that feels overwhelming, it can be helpful to break it down into smaller, more manageable steps. For example, if you need to clean your kitchen, instead of thinking about the entire task, break it down into steps such as “wash dishes,” “wipe counters,” and “sweep the floor.” By focusing on one small step at a time, the task can feel less daunting and more achievable.  Decomposing your tasks can bring a fresh perspective to your to-do list and regain motivation to complete them.

ShiftGrit Psychology & Counselling - coping with depression

Here are some tips that can help you manage your to-do list better: 

Task batching: Grouping similar tasks together, such as running errands at the same time, for instance going to the post office after visiting the grocery store.

Habit stacking: Develop one habit at a time until it becomes second nature, then gradually incorporate another habit until it becomes routine, and so on.

Microtasking: Breaking down your to-do list into small, manageable tasks.

Set realistic goals

Depression can make it difficult to feel motivated, so it is important to set realistic goals. It’s okay to start small and work your way up. For example, if your goal is to exercise regularly, start with a 10-minute walk and gradually increase the time and intensity as you feel able. 

Create a routine

Having a routine can help establish a sense of structure and purpose, even when you’re feeling low. Try to establish a routine that includes regular sleep, exercise, and meals. When you have a routine, it can be easier to get things done because you know what to expect.

Use positive self-talk

Negative self-talk can make it difficult to feel motivated and can make tasks feel more overwhelming. Instead, try using positive self-talk to help motivate yourself. Encourage yourself with phrases like “I can do this” or “I am capable.”

Reward yourself 

 Rewards can vary depending on personal preference. Some people may find that something as simple as having a cup of tea or coffee after completing a task is enough to motivate them, while others may require more substantial rewards, such as a night out with friends or a shopping trip. Identify what rewards work best for you, and use them as incentives for completing tasks.

Create a list of wins and pleasures

Schedule daily activities that provide both accomplishment and pleasure for better mood health. Try to have one of each in the morning, afternoon, and evening, like drinking coffee in a sunny window or vacuuming under the bed. Scheduling activities in advance can make it easier to ensure you have three sources of each per day. When you are depressed, identifying enjoyable activities may be difficult, so brainstorm a list and ask for help if needed.

Reach out for support

Living with depression can feel isolating, but you don’t have to go through it alone. Reach out to a trusted friend, family member, or mental health professional for support. Having someone to talk to can help you feel more motivated and less alone. Seeking help from a mental health professional can be an important step in managing symptoms and enhancing your health. 

Managing depression can be challenging, but it’s important to remember that you don’t have to feel helpless. It’s possible to develop strategies to manage these challenges. By breaking tasks down into smaller steps, setting realistic goals, creating a routine, using positive self-talk, and reaching out for support, you can take steps to accomplish what needs to be done and improve your overall well-being.