Depression is easy. Which is to say that it's easy for me to become depressed. It requires only a moment of the news, social media, or my job.
Getting out of depression seems tougher, but maybe it just requires some of the following:
- Quit social media. Few things are so consistently negative in my life. I could tune my feeds so they led me to feel better, but that's more work than it would be worth. Quitting has proven a more efficient choice. I don't regret it.
- Run. I have never regretted having gone for a run. Yet, in two months I have run two miles. Moving my body out in the world is the best treatment, but I get home from the job and it feels impossible to go run. I'll work on that.
- Stop reading the news. I scan The New York Times, but read fewer and fewer articles. I don't care about political predictions or un-presidential rallies and tweets. My brother used to ask, "what good is the news?" I wonder the same thing.
- Close the door and be alone. Breathe. Leave the television off. Don't put on a record. Sit. Rest. If sleep comes, let it.
- Sleep eight hours. I'm staying up too late trying to have time to myself and with my family. Feeling tired makes it too difficult to feel content.
- Write. Creating something lifts me. It makes me happy almost always, even when it is going poorly. I am content as I type this, as I revise it, as I consider the people who may read it.
- Think of someone else. "If you want to be miserable, think of yourself. If you want to be happy, think of others." -- Sakyong Mipham.
After school, I'll go to my daughter's swim meet. She made sectionals and is trying to advance to states. At the pool I'll think of her, her, and her. I bet I'll be happy. I'm certain I'll feel content. And it's unlikely that I'll feel at all depressed.
Easy as that.