The mental health problem in our world has skyrocketed in the last ten years. It might be because more people are coming forward asking for help, or it might be due to the stressful changes in our world. Either way, depression has become a very prevalent problem.
Sadly the numbers suggest women suffer from mental illness more than men do. It has been suggested this is because women feel more comfortable admitting they are suffering. Depression in men also can present much differently than it does in women.
Men suffer from mental illness. The stigma attached to mental illness often keeps men from coming forward and getting help. Here are a few ways to help men battle depression.
1. Acknowledge the Problem
Everyone can be tempted to ignore problems. Problems happening inside your head are even more likely to be pushed aside. It is important to acknowledge what is happening and how it is making you behave.
Trying to come up with different reasons why you are more irritable than usual, or why you are having trouble completing simple tasks is not going to help. Ignoring how terrible you feel is just going to conceal the problem until it is too big to ignore. Waiting that long might be deadly.
Acknowledging to yourself and those who have to deal with you in your daily life is a good place to start. Admitting there is a problem is the first step right? So admit that you aren’t okay, it will help you start to begin the healing process.
2. Accomplish Small Goals
When you are depressed the world can seem very big and difficult. Small tasks can feel impossible. It makes accomplishing anything at all feel like a mountain you cannot possibly climb.
Giving yourself small tasks that you can accomplish daily is a good place to start. Some days getting out of bed and brushing your teeth feels like a lot. So if that is all you can do then just do that.
Also Read: Dealing with Destructive Anger
Reward yourself for your small accomplishments. Some days brushing your teeth or taking out the garbage feels like a huge job. So reward yourself for accomplishing something that was so hard, the small things are a big deal when you are depressed.
It might feel stupid to be proud of yourself for doing something as simple as showering. Depression is a huge weight on you, and sometimes getting out of bed feels like running a marathon. Doing something like showering or washing dishes is a big deal when you are feeling that terrible so celebrate the things you accomplish no matter how simple they seem.
3. Try Meditation
Okay, this one might seem silly. The thing with depression, especially in men, is it can make your body hurt and your brain feels too tight. Meditation can help with both of those things.
Meditation is an accomplishment. It sets a daily goal and adds routine which is very important for men battle depression. Setting a certain time every day just to breath and focus on feeling better can help your brain and also gives you something to work toward.
Keeping it at a certain time of day adds structure. Sometimes depression tears apart schedules and routine. Part of fighting depression is gaining your routine back and something small like meditation is a great place to start.
4. See People You Like
Talking and interacting with people when you are depressed can be too much. It can feel like a giant chore. That is not what I am suggesting.
Just going to a friend’s house and listening to them talk could be enough. Watching a buddy play video games, or sitting on the couch while a few people you really like joke around with each other can make you feel so much better.
You don’t have to do any of the talking if you aren’t ready. Being around people who make you happy will make you feel better. Having people you like to be with interact around you and be close by in case you need them can really make you feel so much better.
5. Use Logic
Every part of your brain is going to be lying to you while you are depressed. Every small achievement you make is going to feel like you did nothing. Your brain is trying to convince you that you are worthless.
Fight your depressed thoughts with logic. If you think through one of your depressed thoughts with logic it will suddenly seem like a silly thing to have thought at all. Of course, you aren’t worthless, you have things you love and people you love. That gives you worth.
Logic is not going to make depression thoughts go away. It will help you realize how much your brain is lying to you. Even if your brain is still trying to convince you that you haven’t ever done anything, you will be able to think it through enough to recognize the lie.
Depression is not something that is cured in a day. It is a disease that has to be fought consistently. For men, it can be something that presents very differently and be very volatile.
Depression takes so much out of you physically and emotionally that it can feel impossible to fight. Celebrate the small accomplishments. Every little thing you accomplish while you are depressed is just as big as any accomplishment you make when you aren’t depressed.
Give yourself a routine with set times for meditation and waking up. The more you have your life scheduled and things to do the more your brain is going to be working on that and not on being sad. Surround yourself with people who love you and let yourself be happy even when you feel like you shouldn’t be.
Remember that talking to a therapist or psychologist is a good idea for anyone suffering from mental health problems. Talking to a therapist is your best bet to feel better and understand how to fight depression.