Feeling sad is natural, but usually temporary. When sadness lasts for longer periods of time this is often described as depression. Depression affects our emotions, the way we think about ourselves and others, the way we behave and the way we interact with others. Some signs of depression include, fear, anxiety and negative thoughts, loss of control over your life, lack of interest and pleasure in doing things, fatigue, lack of sleep, changes in appetite, feelings of worthlessness, unable to concentrate and having frequent accidents.
- Plan and do things that you enjoy and make you laugh or help you to relax – play games, watch a funny film, have a nice meal, treat yourself, talk to a friend, plan some ‘me time’, listen to music, read a favourite book, relax outdoors.
- Exercise every day, go outside in the fresh air, go for a walk, do some gardening.
- Stay connected with others – phone, video chat with family or a friend, share your worries and concerns, and ask for help.
- Plan ahead – birthdays, holidays and social events.
- Keep a gratitude list or diary to lift you during low or sad moments.
- Continue with daily activities – get dressed, have breakfast, do your daily tasks, exercise. Make a list of what you have to do and tick off what you have done.
- Think positive – keep a diary of positive affirmations, list your strengths and achievements. Set action plans, break large tasks into smaller ones. At the end of the day think of the things you have achieved.
- Create a self soothe box – this is a box (or a bag) of things that help you feel better when you are feeling low or coping with strong emotions. It can contain a number of things such as stress toys, puzzles, aromatherapy oils, positive affirmation cards, poems, photos of holidays, special songs – anything that helps with your senses.
- If you are taking prescribed medicines then continue taking them as advised by your doctor. Consult your doctor if you are not taking them.
- Get help online with a range of information and resources, visit
If you are unable to manage your depression please speak to your doctor for help and advice.