Depression: How to Cope


Depression is a monster towards those it preys upon, leaving its victims helpless and hopeless. In my observation and experience with depression, I realize how uneducated and clueless people are when trying to cope with this illness. I think education is the biggest weapon against this monster; which gives the person struggling with it a hand up.

There are two types of depression: situational depression and clinical depression. There are those who are depressed because of some intense happening in their lives; however, there are those who have depression because of a chemical imbalance, and sometimes it is both causing a person to have depressed feelings. Regardless of the mode that depression comes, it still causes prey to feel hopeless, helpless, suicidal, and not wanting to face life. In my experience with depression all I wanted to do was sleep; sometimes sleeping for 72 hours at a time. I felt like locking myself away in my house and isolating, because I was too depressed to interact with my friends. Suicidal thoughts whirled in my mind a majority of the time; which was very frightening and debilitating.

Some of you reading this article can probably relate to having depression at one point or another, and probably understand the effects it can bring. The question must be asked: how can those dealing with the disease cope effectively and live a full life. From the beginning I want to stress I am not a doctor or therapist, so if some of you reading this article are under a doctorís care, you need to follow his guidance only; unless the points in this article match his/her advice.

First of all I must include a scripture that might lift up those deep in depression. Isaiah 61 covers almost all the bases of healing from depression. God sent Christ to bind up the broken-hearted, give the oil of joy instead of morning, provide beauty instead of ashes, and other wonderful scriptures that help against depression. As a coping technique I would recommend reading this passage of scripture every day, and possibly make it a prayer to God. Ask God to make this scripture a reality in your life, and eventually you will see through the depression to hope.

Another fantastic coping skill is refocusing on another activity; taking all the focus off of depression. Depression wants to suck the life out of its victim; making him/her stuck in a dark cloud unable to do anything. When the refocus practice is put into place, it gives the depression less control in a personís life. I would challenge the reader to focus on anything pleasurable when dealing with depression. Since everyone is different, the focus technique will vary from person to person. I find it enjoyable to write when I get down; however, other may enjoy sports, exercise, art etc. The main goal is to completely take the mind off of the depressing thoughts, and focus full attention on positive thoughts.

One of my favorite coping skills, when dealing with depression, is thought stopping. The basic premise around thought stopping is easy: when a negative thought comes-you stop it! I practice this skill quite often because I have had so many negative thoughts for years. Sometimes when Iím alone and surrounded by depressing thoughts, I yell STOP. It may sound silly to some; however it really does make a difference. The idea behind thought stopping is to ĎstopĒ the negative thought and bring in a positive one. Thoughts tend to produce feelings, or so Iíve learned through therapy, the more positive the thought, the less the depression and negative thoughts have control.

It is important the depressed make a routine and stick to it. (A lot of depressed people just want to sleep the day away) When there is a routine in place; the sufferer has less time to ponder depressing thoughts, and more time to focus on positive ones. When depression is out of control it has a tendency to destroy self-care like: bathing, hanging out with friends, keeping a job, and other important practices. I have a routine stick on my bathroom window that keeps me in check, and gives me something to do when depression strikes. Everyone is different so the practice of setting a routine will vary, but the payback from setting a routine will be enormous.

Last but not least, I would encourage prayer when one is depressed. It doesnít need to be obsessive or route; however, a heart-felt prayer can make all the difference in the world. When you pray just imagine that weight leaving you, and imagine God taking the depression away. As we see in Isaiah, Jesus has come to give us joy, peace, happiness, and love; receive it.

In conclusion, I must stress that I am not a doctor, and the words on this page should never replace your doctorís orders. I am just a person who struggles with Bi-Polar and wants to see others free. Remember, that God is with those who struggle with mental illness, in fact, He is very close to them. I would like to encourage anyone dealing with depression; to find a good doctor and therapist to help out. Ask God to give you the right support system and He will; He did for me. Depression can be a hard foe to defeat; however, using the right tools, and having the help of God, anyone can live a happy, healthy life.

Rob Price robprice33@gmail.com

Receive our free newsletters


The Illustrator: This daily newsletter is dedicated to encouraging everyone to look towards Jesus as the source of all the solutions to our problems. It contains a daily inspirational story, a Bible verse and encouraging messages. HTML and plain text versions available. 

 

The Nugget: Published three times a week, this newsletter features inspirational devotionals and mini-sermons dedicated to drawing mankind closer to each other and to Christ.

Visit Answers2Prayer

Subscribe Here:
The Illustrator
The Nugget

Your email:

Please be aware that you will receive a confirmation message via email. Once you receive it, please click on the link mentioned in the email. If you have problems please email us.