Using poetry and spoken-word, Prince Ea shares some interesting life skills and ideas on his channel. In this video, he’s serving up a healthy way to approach depression: challenge your self-perception.
Known as “re-framing,” the method he’s using gives depression suffers a new way to see themselves–as separate from their condition.
Reframe your thoughts
Re-framing can shake loose many false hangups and beliefs that make us live smaller than we are. It can create shifts in confidence and self-perception.
Depression comes and goes, says Prince Ea, and because you are greater than anything that comes and goes… because YOU are constant, YOU are not depressed.
The takeaway from this piece is that the “feeling” of depression can be real, but you are YOU; you are not your mood.
Lifestyle habits to beat depression
- Exercise daily. Think of exercise as an anti-depressant. If you’ve got insurance or the funds to, hire someone to coach you for 4 months as it may be the only way a depressed person is going to get the drive to go.
- Do yoga. Several poses such as the headstand and other inversion poses are greatly beneficial for mental and emotional well-being. Please be sure to work with an expert (take some classes) to learn the safe beginner-friendly ways to do these poses, as some can be tricky.
- Take classes and do things you enjoy. Once you work up the desire to be around people, take classes and do fewer things alone.
- Spend 20-30 minutes outside every day. This can be part of your exercise plan, when you take a walk, for example.
- Get a pet. Something to care about besides yourself is helpful, plus, pets give you unconditional love.
- Consider activism therapy. Volunteering and helping others help sets you up to be part of something bigger. This can give you a new perspective on your own life and the choices you have.
- Read the Mood Cure. Many diets help promote better moods and Julia Ross bestseller shows you how to use nutritional therapy, if not to cure, then certainly as part of your long-term support.
- Use self-awareness to identify the root cause of your condition. Most sufferers think depression is incurable, that isn’t true.
Seek treatment or put together your own plan
There are various forms of depression and most will respond to treatment. Know that many of your lifestyle habits, such as poor sleep hygiene could be exacerbating the condition. Unhealed and unacknowledged trauma, chronic stress, and lack of social support may also be making you blue. Not getting enough sunshine (Vitamin D) and even not eating the right foods can worsen the condition. If your endocrine system is in trouble or you have various other medical conditions, these can present symptoms of depression. This is too big a problem to handle on your own, so get help from a pro. With a plan and support to follow it, you can feel better and better.
Challenge your self-perception
This is the number one thing I want you to know about the disease: Depression is a f’ing liar.
Almost everything your depressed mind tells you is a lie or at least an exaggeration. Recovered patients found a big gap in how they viewed the same situation when they were depressed vs. feeling better. Thoughts like these are often untrue or exaggerated:
- I don’t like people.
- People suck.
- I hate exercise.
- Nothing ever changes.
- If only my mother/ father/ whoever had supported and loved me.
- I’m a loser because I feel this way.
Challenge your self-perception and take positive steps to help yourself. With depression, you don’t need to fake positivity or be positive, but you can ACT positively. You can seek out support groups because that’s a positive step. You can start working on one habit at a time—a regular bedtime routine, for example—because that’s a positive step.
There are over a hundred things you can do to help yourself feel better. It’s going to be a lot easier to stick to them if you have some type of help. You’re going to need someone to help you see yourself differently on the days you can’t. You’re going to need someone to encourage you to take a walk, tidy up and be patient with yourself.
I’m not a fan of taking drugs myself and haven’t taken pharmaceuticals for even pain in many many years, but this is how I feel about them: Sometimes you just got to.
In the case of depression, drugs often help and is a way of keeping yourself in the game. If by taking anti-depressants for say 6-8 months, they help you regain the emotional energy to do the other things that will fix the underlying problem (let’s say that problem is loneliness), then it’s absolutely worth it to take them.
Think of them as a way to stay in the game while you seek a better long-term solution.
Christine is a lifestyle coach living in Los Angeles. She believes the way we live predicts our future health and motivation. Email email@example.com to find out about working with Christine.