The Jakarta Post
Depression is a debilitating condition that can make us feel trapped. (Shutterstock/Marekuliasz)
Depression is one of the most difficult mental conditions to handle, because its symptoms can diminish our will and energy to do the things we usually love.
It is easier said than done, however, but when we feel exhausted and trapped in loneliness, that is the right moment to push ourselves to do something that excites us.
We must fight the inner voices that haunt us and tell us nothing can make us feel better. Bear in mind that giving in to negative energy will only feed depression.
Below are a few ways to brighten up our mood when depression comes, which were also recommended by Kompas.com:
1. Read a book, watch a movie or TV series
Sometimes when life feels too difficult, we can seek temporary escapes in books, movies, or TV series that are familiar to us. Reading or watching a show that explains every detail about the thinking process, emotions, and situation we are going through could be entertaining and calming. But it’s better if we choose themes that entertain, encourage and remind us that there are other things to do than fall into depression. Avoid depressing and dark themes.
2. Play with pets
Studies have shown that interaction with pets can enhance our quality of life and mental health in general. Spend some time with your pet cat or dog, or visit the nearest cat or dog café if there is one. Otherwise, find an animal shelter and volunteer to care for animals there.
3. Get involved in an anonymous online forum, blog or local community
There are not many people who will freely speak about their mental health. Depressed souls, however, should know that they are not alone and that they should keep on fighting. Joining an online forum or local community will help us to realize that many people around the world are suffering from the same condition. The knowledge will help us feel less lonely. Examples of online forums are Into the Light (peer counseling forum), Whisper (an app whose service has fostered a support network among users), IMAlive (a live online network that uses instant messaging to respond to people in crisis), Trevor Space (a US organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people aged 13-24), and Healthful Chat (an online peer support society).
4. Find a therapist
This might sound like scary advice, however having someone who understands and is willing to converse is great. It can give us a deeper understanding of ourselves and our mental health.
5. Confide in parents or close friends
It is possible that we feel reluctant to confide in those who are closest to us, for fear of bothering them. But when we are able to identify, embrace and discuss our situation, it is a great achievement. Our loved ones will always support us.
6. Call emergency numbers
When we are in an emergency and need to talk to someone, never hesitate to call for help. There are lines dedicated to helping people in different situations from suicide attempts, mental problems and other emergencies.
Listed here are emergency hotlines in Indonesia.
Suicide prevention: +62 21 725 6526, 725 7826, 722 1810, 500 567
Mental health counseling by the Health Ministry: +62 21 500 454
Remember, seeking help does not mean we are weak. (mut)