1) Don’t bottle things up: if you’ve recently had some bad news, or a major upset in your life, try to tell people close to you about it and how it feels. It helps re-live the painful experience several times, to have a good cry, and talk things through. This is part of the mind’s natural healing mechanism.
2) Do something: get out of doors for some exercise, if even for only a long walk. This will enable you to keep physically fit, and you may sleep better…This will help you take your mind off those painful feelings which only make you more depressed when allowed to sweep over you.
3) Eat a good balanced diet: even though you may not feel like eating. Fresh fruits and vegetables are especially recommended. People with severe depression can lose weight and run low in vitamins, which only makes matters worse.
4) Resist the temptation to drown your sorrows. Alcohol, actually depresses mood, so while it may give you immediate relief, this is very temporary and you may end up more depressed that ever.
5) Don’t get into a state of not sleeping. Listening to the radio or watching TV (it’s on all night now!) while you’re resting your body will still help, even if you are not actually asleep, and you may find that you drop off because you’re no longer worrying about not doing so!
6) Remind yourself that you are suffering from depression –something which many other people have gone through — and that you will eventually come out of it, as they did, even though it does not feel like it at the time. Depression can even be a useful experience, in that some people emerge stronger and better able to cope than before. Situations and relationships may be seen more clearly, and you may now have the strength and the wisdom to make important decisions and changes in your life which you were unable to do before.”
Source: Depression: P.9. Pamphlet published as a service to the Royal College of Psychiatrists.
I find these 6 ways as very helpful for anyone making a choice to change their behavior, the way they feel and the way they think. With a fellowship of like minded persons, such as Depressed Anonymous, there is a greater capacity to make better choices as well as to learn ways to gradually move out of the bondage of depression.
Sources: Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition.(2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.
The Depressed Anonymous Workbook (2001) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.