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  1. #1

    Default What helped you with depression?

    I never sought treatment with medication or even counseling. I probably should have done counseling as a teen, but I did not understand it then. And, I wasn't about to make my psyche vulnerable to something I didn't understand. What did help me the most was:

    1. Self-administered Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
    I didn't use this site, but it looks like an excellent resource:
    All About Depression: Online Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy Workshop


    2. Exploring diverse interests and activities, which included everything from photography, aquariums, time spent in nature, woodworking, and learning the skills and information required to survive with nothing.
    I emphasized "with nothing" because that allowed me to sever all ingrained cultural and psychological power plays which are imposed upon us by family and society. I think these are the root cause of depression for many because they impose a meaning of life upon us which is itself meaningless.


    3. The social support of family and friends
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  2. #2

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    Modern psychoanalysis. It is not enjoyable to do, and it takes many months before any differences are noticed, and for the most part it's not so much about making you feel better but about giving you tools to understand why you are the way you are and ergo how to manage them, which can lead to feeling better via properly helping yourself. Prior to this, pretty much nothing put a meaningful dent into my issues.
    It is our duty to create meaning.

    If only it were that simple.

  3. #3
    ιяяєѕιѕтιвlє Ꮆяαѕρ Luminous's Avatar
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    Therapy, pets, exercise, hobbies/nature/finding a good friend group, drugs. I needed medication.
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  4. #4
    Jesting Philosopher Kanra13's Avatar
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    Talking about my problems with a friend or councilor. Sharing my feelings or thoughts. Especially thoughts. Problem is once I am around a councilor I'll share thinking my feelings more than actually feeling my feelings so while I express it's mostly from a more detached perspective. I'm too good at hiding things. Have to work through my own high functioning wall of dissociation and ego to get to the human substance underneath.

    Goals are EVERYTHING to me and being able to do my own thing. My goals achieved helps. ANd going out and about with friends and such. Or travel. Feeling more alive. And accomplishing and 'manifesting' things I want to manifest.

    And zoning off listening to music so i can explore my feelings cuz music helps me actually 'feel' something on a deeper level to fantasize.

    Asmr helps a bit too. Cuz it occupies my mind with the how fascinating intimacy and different intimate sounds are (inferior si?)

    Other than that just long talks about thoughts, ideas, jokes, philsophical depth, ect ect. Which most will likely be intimidated by me cuz I come on too strong. Or don't like me "playing games" with them. I've tried to "make friends"

    But I always need distractions or something. ADD. Or I'll get bored or fidgety or depressed.

    Unfortunately this can result in stalking around half dead forums and leaving after I realize I can't get any feedback loop.

    I disappear on here on and off a lot.

    Same with other places and things.
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  5. #5
    Amethyst's Queen ♚ Bismuth Blitz's Avatar
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    Doing art, drinking tea, relaxing with good shows, as well as going to my favorite places. Therapy's been a mixed bag for me. Therapy's hard for me because I'm shy and awkward and it's hard for me to put my feelings into words. I also space out when I'm meditating, though I've tried some CBT stuff which was fairly relaxing. It's just hard for me to take what I learned in therapy and apply it at home. I'm a fidgety person so it's hard to for me to just sit down and practice the mindfulness exercises.

    The biggest thing for me is just..time. In my personal experience, a lot of time I can just let depression "run its course". Probably not that way for some people, but in comparison to my anxiety, depression has more of a trigger(like school stress). My anxiety in comparison, it's just a constant state of mind. I get flashbacks, phobias, and self hating thoughts with little to no triggers. It's easier to pinpoint what causes my depression rather than my anxiety as a whole. Also I've noticed anxiety seems to cause my depression in a way-worrying and worrying until I just no longer care.
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  6. #6
    Crackpot Socialist highlander's Avatar
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    I only had issues with this thing one time but it was pretty severe and lasted about a year. Was really awful actually. In order of effectiveness, I would say there are three things:

    1. Medication – for me, it was a combination of Bupropion and Lamictal. It wasn’t a cure but allowed me to be about 60% functional. Lamictal kicked in right away but the anti-depressant took a few weeks
    2. Work – keeping busy and productive made a big difference. Was the worst when I was idle or alone and by myself thinking
    3. Passage of time – I put this last because it took so damn long

    I had some therapy but that turned out to be pretty worthless

    Edit: Correction, technically it lasted more than a year. I did notice that I had short relapses that at first occurred with some regularity with various random triggers but as time went on, they got shorter, less frequent and were less severe. I suppose it happens to some extent even today on rare occasion for a few hours even after 7 - 8 years. I don't take medication or do anything for it. It just dissipates.

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  7. #7
    Inactive For A Bit RadicalDoubt's Avatar
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    Self analysis was a big one for me. I'm not really out of depression yet, but many of my emotions just became repressed and inaccessible when I started to become depressed. Self analysis started to help me to recognize them, as well as some of their origins. Setting goals to change myself and get out of scenarios which made my depression worse was another big one. Moving also helped bring about change. Time is huge as well.

    “My deplorable mania for analysis exhausts me. I doubt everything, even my doubt.” Gustave Flaubert
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  8. #8
    Two steps from Hell Maou's Avatar
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    Ive battled with repression and depression for years till it spilled over when my long time cat died. I am a strong supporter of using CBT, and focusing on keeping a full schedual. But sometimes its still not enough. I didn't get real change till I got on SSRI. Zoloft then Lexapro, which worked way better for me. Therapy didnt really do much but inspire me to do new things. Its nice to have someone to talk to.

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  9. #9
    Logic Fairy Hermit of the Forest's Avatar
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    Better nutrition, lifestyle, sleep. Human interaction and connection. Also, changed attitude/perspective helps tremendously. Sunlight and outdoor time is invaluable.

    That said, I still struggle to work out all of those things. Depression is something I work with daily.
    Chase the adventure. Cherish the joy.


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  10. #10
    Scary old man OldFolksBoogie's Avatar
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    Depression was never my thing. In fact I had a lot of disdain for depressive people. Instead, my thing was to have a lot of anxiety going on all the time--fears about the future, paranoia attending all my actions in life, anger about the petty games people play, rage at the futility of life, and so on.

    But eventually I realized that there was also some light depression lurking in the background there. Even when things were going great, I had this kind of depressive fatality about life in general and my life in particular.

    So I came to see the anxiety/depression link as a progression, with anxiety as the mid-stage between stress and depression: Normal Stress -> Anxiety -> Depression. At least, that's how it seems to work for me.

    I noticed that when my anxiety and rage were at their worst, they kind of served as an inoculation against depression. The rage and fear seemed to ward off the deep fall into depression. On the other hand, there were occasions when I sometimes just kind of gave up on life's problems and shut down, but that would tend to lead to a fall into deeper depression. And to fight my way back out of that depression would mean re-claiming my anxiety and paranoia and rage--sort of "taking the initiative" and fighting my way back out of that hole.

    Of course it wasn't really a good way to live life, teetering between anxiety and depression, but that's how I saw it. Also I never consulted a professional about any of this. I just figured it was normal and I got by in life by self-medicating with alcohol to the point of having a sizable drinking problem much of my adult life. But it was fine, most of my peers seemed the same way; as I figured it, it was the happy ones who were nuts or simply too stupid to notice how screwed-up life is.

    Anyway, after I retired I started reading a lot of psychology self-help books, and eventually focused on books about anxiety and depression in particular. A couple good overviews of current mainstream theory for the non-technical layman these days: "Anxiety for Dummies" and "Depression for Dummies" in the famous "For Dummies" series. They go right to the meat of the issue and describe the symptoms and the paranoid or circular thinking that happens with both problems, and they walk you through all the standard treatment methods. CBT comes first as the most "provably" effective treatment method, but the books also talk about things like mindfulness, stress reduction techniques, medication options (overviews of all the standard drug options), etc.

    Anyway, I wasn't surprised to find that the Anxiety and Depression books both covered a lot of the same ground. CBT is deemed the most effective treatment for both, etc. It kind of bolstered my idea that there is a progression from Anxiety to Depression.

    Also, with my self-help reading across the last 10 years I kind of got a handle on how stress arises and turns into anxiety. So much so that nowadays I normally feel pretty anxiety-free. Of course it helps that I'm retired: It's easier to be anxiety-free when you play life on easy mode. But still: Even retirees have stress. In fact if life gets too easy, that's a danger signal. We all need challenges. I take on new adventures on a regular basis just to keep from settling into too much of a rut.

    So there are still times when stress builds up and I feel it hovering over me like a black cloud and turning into anxiety. But I know what's going on in my head when that happens, so it's easier to just view that anxiety as a warning signal and seek out some work-arounds. Or just ignore it as a nonsense signal and work through it, assuming the situation is a temporary one.

    That's kind of where I'm at these days. (Still haven't seen a professional on any of this, but I don't figure there is any need for one at this point.)
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