When you're feeling depressed, making an effort to be active is easier said than done. Even so, doing activities can go a long way towards easing negative moods or living well with a depression diagnosis. Sometimes, the challenge is finding pastimes that appeal to you. Here is a list that just might help you!
Writing can come in various different forms; whether you know which type/s of writing you like or haven't tried any at all, having a bit of trial and error to find your writing style is definitely worth it.
You can simply go for the journal style where you write out your feelings, what you did today or how your relationships are going, etc. This style of writing is great to be able to process exactly what you are feeling and actually be able to put some of those feelings into words if you have struggled with this before. You don't have to share this writing with anyone else; it can simply be for you.
However, this is a great way to let others know of your problems if you struggle to say things in person.Another style of writing is fiction, whether that's a novel, short story or poem.
No matter what the genre, be it fantasy, romance or thriller, being able to jump into another world and create the story and lives of the characters can really take your mind away from what you are going through, especially if it's a character trying to navigate the same struggles as you are. I find writing to be one of the best ways for your mind to drift away and slip into another reality.
2. Arts & Crafts
Crafting can come in so many forms which means that you can’t do wrong and you can fully be creative. Being able to use different materials and art accessories from anywhere and everywhere means you can create a masterpiece (or a mess) and just have some fun with it.
Mood boards are a great example of something you could make. They consist of images and words depicting how you feel, which means you can get creative by having your emotions and feelings out in front of you.
You can paint abstractly, paint a portrait or paint anything that takes your fancy. However, if you’re anything like me, you love to paint but painting does not love you. I was not born with the talent of drawing or painting, but that doesn’t stop me from trying to do it anyway.A great way to paint an image that hasn’t been drawn by yourself is paint-by-numbers.
You can buy a canvas with a pre-printed image on. It has lots of sections with numbers in and you paint in those sections with the coordinating colors. So you can still get the joy of painting and a great image at the end.
Baking is a great way to relieve stress and focus your mind on something. Doing this with others can be great for bonding and having some fun, but you can also have fun doing it alone. Focusing your mind and efforts into taking many ingredients and combining them to make something delicious is great for your mental health and also gives you the chance to be able to share what you bake with others.
It can be difficult to bake if you are trying to have a healthy diet, however, there’s so many things you can bake so there are lots of healthier options you can choose. But after all, diet is all about moderation, so you can let yourself have a big piece of chocolate cake now and then!
This activity is especially great for when you are feeling overwhelmed, stressed, confused, angry, etc, as it can really help to calm you down and balance your mind. There are many poses you can perform, no matter your level or flexibility.
You need to find yourself a quiet and comfortable area to practice yoga and be able to give your full attention to it, as these are essential to make it a useful session. Being able to stretch and use breathing techniques can help to balance the mind and aid you into stabilizing your emotions and give your body and mind the chance to refresh.
6. Taking a walk
When you are suffering from depression or depressive symptoms, you can find yourself staying indoors and shying away from activities outside your home. Also, within the current climate of Covid-19, staying at home is happening more than ever.
Going outside your house simply for a walk can do wonders for your mental health and also helps your physical health too. Getting fresh air and surrounding yourself with a different environment beyond the four walls you are used to can help to clear your mind and let yourself focus on the walk and the surrounding nature.
Other outdoor activities you can do is ride a bike, go swimming, go jogging, picking wildflowers; all of these activities can be enjoyed alone or done with others, which can also give you the chance to have conversations with others without it being over text message or without the influence of the internet and social media.
7. Having a bath
So, this one isn’t exactly much of an activity, but it doesn’t matter because it still can do great things for your mental health. Whether you only occasionally have a bath or decide to allocate a weekly one, soaking into a lovely hot bath can help relieve your stress and balance your emotions.
When running yourself a bath, it’s great to add some bubbles or a bath bomb, read a book or close your eyes and relax, and maybe add some candles or an incense in the room. This can help to heighten the relaxation you get from having a bath and being able to shake off the day.
Whether you use any of the activities in this list as inspiration or use other ways to help ease your depression or symptoms, you always need to remember that you are not going through this alone and that you have many people around you that are there to help and support you when you need it, and may be able to assist you in some of these activities and have some fun.