Cheesy mantras and meditation aren’t the only things that help people be happier. You can learn how to get inspired even when you’re feeling down.
Things are going from bad to worse for you and things aren’t looking good at work. Your relationship has hit rock bottom and you’re having trouble paying your rent.
It’s hard times and you feel like you’ve hit rock bottom; you’ve lost hope and don’t know where to turn. You’d rather be watching TV than thinking about anything else.
If you’re experiencing some depression right now, don’t worry; things will get better. Just suck it up!
If you’re feeling down, it can be difficult to get yourself out of bed. You may feel like you’ve hit rock bottom, and nothing can motivate you anymore.
But, if you really try, you’ll find that you can start thinking positively again. How do you do that? Well, you could think about what you’d love to accomplish in the future, or how much fun you’d like to have.
Whatever you choose to focus on, make sure that it gives you energy and excitement instead of draining you.
If you’re here, you’ve probably already tried things to get yourself back on course, but you might be feeling stuck.
Your situation might be making you doubt yourself or your emotions, or you might be wondering why you’re not happier.
If there is one thing we know for sure, it is that you’re here because you need some inspiration. Here are the 13 best ways to get inspired again.
If you’re willing to put in some effort and commit to making changes, you can find yourself once again. It might take some time before you see results, but they will come eventually.
13 Hacks to Improve Mental Health When Feeling Depressed
1 – Don’t be afraid to take medication for your demons.
Let’s get rid of the medication immediately. Listen to me.
You’ve all heard the saying that “A thousand mile trip starts with one step.” That’s what getting better and being motivated again is all about. A long road ahead, but if you keep at it, you’re sure to get there eventually.
If you’re depressed, you may not be able to get up from the couch. But you can still start climbing the mountain toward wellness by starting small.
Many people think that antidepressants are the best way to treat depression, but some people actually prefer them because they help them feel better.
Sometimes depression results from our external circumstances, and sometimes it comes from brain chemistry. If your neurotransmitters aren’t working properly, no amount of running or saying “I”m sorry” in the mirror will help. You need medical treatment.
If you feel like you’re having some trouble coping with depression, speak to a professional who can help you figure out which medications might be best for you.
2 – You don’t need to be aiming for the actual stars; start by looking at the planetarium.
If you’re really having trouble thinking of something positive to say, don’t expect the world from yourself.
Don’t expect yourself to complete all of your tasks on schedule every single day and don’t get mad at yourself if you make a small error here or there.
When you’re depressed, your energy level changes dramatically; whether you suffer from clinical or seasonal or situational depressions, the negative self-talking you do to reinforce your negative emotions doubles down on you when you fail.
If you want to be successful at something, don’t just focus on achieving big things. Focus on small achievements first. And then once you’ve achieved these smaller successes, you can start planning for bigger ones.
3 – Seek professional help
People who take antidepressants will probably be familiar with the importance of seeing a good therapist.
Therapy goes hand-in-hand (with) medications and can help us understand a lot of things in life.
When you talk to an experienced therapist, you’ll be able to relax because you’ll feel comfortable knowing you’re dealing with someone who not only knows what they’re doing, but has been trained to do so.
We tend to reach out to our close circle of family and/or friend when we feel down. However, reaching out to them isn’t always enough.
Therapists can be helpful because they teach us to recognize our negative thinking and behaviors so we can learn to correct them.
If you’re feeling bad about yourself because you feel like everyone else has it better than you, then telling them so won’t help at all.
But if you’re actually depressed, then telling people that you feel bad about yourself isn’t going to help either.
4 – Create a happy routine.
Michael Yapko, a psychologist and writer of Breaking the Patterns of Depression, says that having a happy routine can help you rekindle motivation and inspiration for living.
Yapko claims that having all the motivation you could possibly want won’t actually be helpful if you don’t have any new habits or skills that allow you to deal with your depression.
Creating your own happy routine can be helpful when combating depression.
When you start feeling depressed, create happy moments by doing things you enjoy. You may want to sit down with a good book, go out with your friends to eat at a new place, or take a walk outside.
If those types of things aren’t enough to get you out from under your depression, then you might want to consider looking into more strenuous activities focused around fitness and physical activity.
5 – Practice makes perfect.
If you behave more positively, then eventually you’ll begin to feel that way.
When we project and vibe of being happy (and make an effort to treat ourselves well), we get the same back tenfold from the folks and places around us.
We can’t help but radiate happiness when we look good, so we’ll naturally attract others who share our outlook. And when we’ve got positive vibes flowing, we’ll be more pleasant to those around us, and they’ll respond positively to us too.
So if you want to improve your mood, start treating yourself right!
Go to the salon, and get a new hair color. Or just put on a nice dress and pair of heels. You can do whatever you’d like to make yourself feel better about yourself.
Fake it until you become good at faking it.
6 – Build some mental barriers.
If your mind is a fortress, then it needs protection just like any other fort.
It’s important to take care of your emotional well-being as much as your physical wellbeing. By keeping yourself from triggering negative emotions, we can help to keep our moods elevated and our minds clear.
Stop checking Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., stop looking at old photos, and delete any emails that trigger negative emotions and feelings of depression.
It may seem trivial to you now but these small changes could help you change your life for the better.
Those things don’t help us focus on anything important, like our health and future. Let go of the past and focus on the future instead.
Nobody is holding you back from achieving success, but yourself in the end.
7 – Plan ahead and set aside time for yourself every day.
We’re creatures of habit and when our schedule is set up well, it calms us down and makes us more secure.
When life gets out of balance, schedule the daily activities you need to get done into a routine so you know they’re going to happen regularly.
For example, brush your teeth before you go to sleep at night and wake up in the morning without having to think about it.
You may want to try sticking to a new habit for at least 28 days, no matter how depressed you might be during that period.
Afterward, you’ll begin to develop a sense of normality and you’ll start to believe that you can manage your own life and your own fate.
We cannot always be in charge of the ups and downs of our emotional states, but we can take charge of most of the relationships we have with the people around us.
If we manage just one percent of our lives, it will help diminish the feelings of hopelessness we sometimes experience.
8 – Don’t overdo it – delegate!
Depression makes us unable to complete normal workload. We start piling up tasks and before we realize it, we’re overwhelmed and feel like there’s no way out.
To avoid feeling overwhelmed by too many things at once, learn how to delegate small, easy tasks to others.
If you’re really stuck and have a long list of things that don’t really need your attention, pass them off to someone else. You might end up missing one thing, but if you mess up, it won’t be because you didn’t do anything at all.
If you don’t speak up for yourself, others won’t either. So accept that other people can speak up for themselves.
9 – Exercise
Exercise is good for people who feel down.
You don’t necessarily have to join a gym in order to get the workout you want. Walking the dog or weeding the garden for 20 minutes every single morning can help you stay fit without having to spend hours at the gym.
And understand: this workout isn’t just about the cardio. It’s also about the fresh air and sunlight too.
Getting some sun exposure, whether through going outside or using an umbrella, helps provide vitamin D. A lack of vitamin D has been linked to several health issues including poor sleep, anxiety, and memory loss.
Vitamin D and fresh outdoor exposure play a major role in how we’re feeling. Some studies show that just 20 minutes of sun per day can boost our energy levels.
It doesn’t matter what you do. Exercise for at least 30 mins three days per weeks helps you feel better and get your energy back.
10 – Practice Stoicism.
There’re two exercises called the Stoic Exercise that help us really work through the realities of our problems and the negativity we form around them.
If you want to be wise, just follow these instructions.
Create three columns on a piece of blank copy. Address these questions in each of the three columns:
- 1 – Name your fear. Think about what’s the worst that can happen?
- 2 – What can be done to minimize that. Can you avoid it from happen?
- 3 – What is the worst thing that can happen? How long would take you to fix everything?
When you’ve completed the columns with your fear and negative thoughts, you should realize two things:
- Your fears and negative thoughts are (mostly) in your head, or probably not as realistic as you think they are.
- Even if the worst happened, the damage would be repairable.
When you realize that everything is temporary, you’ll feel much more comfortable during difficult times. Life is full of ups and downs; things can get worse before they get better.
But if you keep your head up high, you’ll see that tomorrow brings new opportunities. You will succeed in life because you’ve got something inside you that no one else does – the ability to change.
11 – Celebrate even your smallest wins.
To be happy, you must create an environment where you feel good most of the time. You need to generate feelings of pleasure by yourself until they become organic.
Celebrate your success by taking the extra effort to recognize even your smallest achievements.
Even though positive emotions don’t always involve big wins, they’re important no matter what. Depressed people often struggle to function because of their negative moods, which make it difficult to notice any positives.
It may seem impossible now but you won’t be able to prevent every single emotion from coming up, so just accept them for what they are and don’t let them get to you.
Celebrate your smallest wins instead of focusing on the negatives.
12 – Reframe that negativity.
Depression makes you feel bad about yourself when you don’t need to.
When we get stuck, our self talk starts to sound a bit like this:
“You can’t do anything right. Look what you’ve done to yourself. You’re not any better off than you were before. You’re just an old fool who hasn’t learned anything new. You’re too old to change.”
We’re not always rational beings, but we can control our thoughts and change our brain chemistry through reframed thought patterns.
By forcing yourself to think positively, you create new neural paths, which leave you happy, uplifted and more resistant to life’s challenges.
As we learn new things, our old bad habits tend to fall away. That’s why when we learn something new, our old bad habits fall away and are replaced by the new positive ones.
You need to be really focused and conscious to change your thinking from negative to positive.
But it’s definitely worth it, and it’s one of the best ways for you to start seeing the light at the end of the tunnel if you’re having trouble seeing through the clouds.
13 – Socialize outside.
It’s important for depressed people to maintain their social relationships, but they need to be careful not to let these negative thoughts get in the way of functioning.
It’s important to socialize. Make a standing appointment to meet up with a friend or family members and force yourself to go through with it even if you don’t really want to.
If someone else holds us accountable for doing something, it’s harder for us to avoid doing it. We can only avoid doing things if we go outside, meet people, and experience new things.
You can go to the bookstore to people watch or sit at a coffee shop and enjoy your favorite beverage. If you don’t have a close friend or relative nearby, don’t let that be an obstacle; look for a local community group that engages in similar activities or join a local meet-up group to make some new friends.
Some departing thoughts
Millions of people around world suffer from depression. It doesn’t happen only to you.
Make the first step toward getting motivated by life again by telling yourself that you can do so and not giving up when things get hard.
You may encounter a number of obstacles along the way, but by staying true to yourself and accepting that some times are going to be harder for you than others, you‘ll end up on the right track to true happiness in no long time at all.
Commit to the journey, and take your family and close confidantes with you.
You can be inspired again. Commit yourself, and believe in it.