Depression: Managing Dependency

DEPRESSION: COPING WITH ADDICTION

Managing Depression, With Audio | by Blur Team |
When we think of addiction, we typically think of drug and alcohol addiction, but addiction can relate to a wide variety of things, including drugs, alcohol, food, exercise, pornography, gaming, social media, tattoos, self-harm, gambling, and shopping. Addiction can be caused by anything that makes us feel out of control of our emotions and behaviors. Addiction can be extremely difficult to overcome, especially when the substances to which one is addicted are readily available. Depression and addiction can occur together. Depression can be caused or exacerbated by the things we are addicted to, but addiction can also help us cope with depression.

IDENTIFY CAUSES

In terms of addiction, triggers are any emotional or environmental factors that induce the desire to use the addictive substance. It could pertain to people, locations, things, seasons, or something else. Working out what our triggers are can take time, but once we know what they are, we can avoid them or learn ways to manage them.

HIGH-RISK SITUATIONS

High-risk situations are similar to triggers, but instead of being specific things, such as observing someone walking a dog, they are specific situations. This could include the holiday season, seeing family, or receiving negative feedback at work. Sometimes it can be difficult to recognize these situations until we are in them, so it can be useful to make a note whenever we feel the need for our addiction.
Once these situations are identified, we can devise a plan to deal with them without resorting to our addiction.
For instance, if one of our high-risk situations is seeing my aunt, we may choose to see them less frequently, only in the presence of other friends/family, and invite a friend to spend the night whenever we do see them, so that we are not forced to cope alone. We could also record alternative coping strategies so that we don’t have to consider them in the moment and can simply refer to our notes. Because sometimes our first or second ideas aren’t possible or don’t work, it’s often helpful to write down a few additional ideas.

WORKING OUT HOW OUR ADDICTION HELPS US

If our addiction did not benefit us in some way, we would not continue to use it. Determining how addiction benefits us and then replacing it with a healthy coping mechanism can be a crucial aspect of overcoming addiction. As these are common emotions associated with addiction, it can be helpful to use the acronym HUNGRY ANGRY LONELY TIRED (HALT) when considering the needs that are being met.
Different coping mechanisms
It is helpful to have a list of coping mechanisms to use when we feel the urge to turn to our addiction. We’re all different, and we all develop addictions for different reasons, so different coping mechanisms will work for different individuals. As alternatives to our addiction, we could try watching television, reading, walking, talking to a friend, drawing, writing, painting, listening to music, listening to podcasts, doing breathing exercises, ripping up paper, drawing on ourselves, running, cleaning, self-soothing, doing puzzles, singing, hugging a pet, dancing, playing with play-doh, or calling a helpline. Sometimes we must employ a coping mechanism multiple times before it becomes effective; however, practice makes perfect!

REMINDERS

There are times when fighting our addiction seems pointless. It feels too difficult. Were too worn out. There is no point in attempting because we cannot succeed, so why bother?
We have no interest in reaching out for support or employing healthy coping mechanisms during these times.
This is a very high-risk period for relapsing into our addiction. Having reminders of why we don’t want to go there can encourage us to continue moving forward. This could be in the form of photos on our phone, on the wall, or in our purse or wallet. We may have lists of reasons to continue or things we want to do once we are physically capable. There may have been a time when we experienced an extraordinary day, and we may have a physical reminder of it. A particular aroma or flavor could transport us back to happier times that we hoped to recreate in the future. When we are tempted to return to our addiction, keeping small reminders in our home, bag, or coat pockets can help us resist the urge.

REFLECT

Occasionally, things go exceptionally well, and we feel like we’re overcoming our addiction. Occasionally, things don’t go so well, and it can feel like our addiction is winning.
It is essential to remember that a lapse is distinct from a relapse. Recovery is not a linear process. Whether things go well or poorly, it is essential to reflect on them and learn from them.
If we’ve navigated a challenging situation without resorting to our addiction, that’s fantastic progress! How did we do it? What coping strategies did we employ? Is there anything we should jot down so that we can attempt this again in the future?
If we’ve struggled through a challenging situation and resorted to our addiction, we haven’t failed; we’ve merely stumbled. We can learn as much (if not more) from our failures as we can from our successes. What happened this time? Was there a trigger that we did not anticipate or a high-risk situation that we did not anticipate? Did anything go right? Is there anything that we could do differently in the future? Sometimes we must utilize a coping mechanism multiple times before it becomes effective. In the past, we may have attempted a coping mechanism that did not work for us, so we do not wish to try it again.
This reflection can be extremely valuable because it can assist us in moving forward. Some of us may find it useful to record these events in a journal.
Integrity is essential.
Sincerity is one of the most essential factors when it comes to addiction. Sincerity to others and sincerity to oneself. Lying to ourselves and others is likely to cause a great deal of problems, so it is essential to attempt to tell the truth even when it is extremely difficult.

SUPPORT SYSTEM

We do not need to face addiction alone. To combat the incredibly potent nature of addiction, we must attempt to establish a robust support system. When we are struggling, it can be helpful to have a few friends, family members, or organizations we can turn to for assistance. It can be dangerous to quit an addiction cold turkey, so it is often a good idea to seek professional assistance in addition to the support of our loved ones. Additionally, we may find that some medication, therapy, or professional counseling is required.
There are times when we struggle to accept assistance from others. We may feel as though we don’t deserve support or are a burden, but we do, and just as if one of our friends were struggling, we would want to support them, our friends will likely want to support us as well. There are times when it is difficult to reach out for support because we lack hope, but there is nothing wrong with allowing others to temporarily hold our hope until we are able to hope again.

SUPPORT GROUPS

In addition to the support we receive from our friends, family, and professionals, we may find that support groups with others who have dealt with similar addictions can be reassuring and coping-enhancing. Sometimes, being surrounded by people who have had similar experiences can help us feel less isolated and give us hope that things will improve. There are various support groups for various addictions, such as alcoholics anonymous, narcotics anonymous, the national self-harm network, sex addicts anonymous, overeaters anonymous, Beat support groups, online gamers anonymous, and gamblers anonymous.
Please help us help others by sharing this post; you never know who might require assistance.

– Surviving Depression
– With Sound

DEPRESSION: SUMMER HOLIDAY COPING TIPS FOR STUDENTS

Student summer vacations can be challenging. The lengthy weeks can seem endless as they stretch out before us. Everyone around us appears to be happy, and the sun is shining, so it may feel as though we have no reason to be unhappy. When returning home after studying abroad, we may have left a support system behind, returning to a family that does not know or understand how we are feeling. It can be extremely isolating.

DEPRESSION: HOW ECOTHERAPY MAY HELP

Everyone experiences depression differently. Because we are all unique, our respective aids also vary. Something that transforms one person’s life may have no effect on another. As a result, it is helpful to have a variety of suggestions for enhancing our mood. Ecotherapy has the potential to be a very effective treatment for us.

DEPRESSION: HOW NATURE HELPS ME

In the fall of 2011, I was out of work due to depression. My overactive mind tormented me at night and rendered me a zombie during the day. I discovered I needed to get out of the house as frequently as possible, even if only for five or ten minutes.

Summary

Addiction can help us to cope with depression, but equally, depression can be caused or worsened by the things we’re addicted to.

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