A recent trending Twitter hashtag aims to acknowledge the burdens of depression by starting candid conversations around mental illness and offering helpful strategies for fighting it. #HowIFightDepression took off last week, and thousands are still embracing the opportunity to share their struggles and suggest mental health tips.
While there were some who saw the Twitter trend as nothing but a superficial take on a grave mental health concern, most folks seem to view #HowIFightDepression as a means of encouraging conversation and offering support to those battling the disorder.
And there are a lot of people struggling. According to the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance, depression affects approximately 7.3 million Americans, or 7.1 percent of the adult population in a given year. For those under the age of 17, 1.9 million are diagnosed with the disorder annually.
Though there is no “cure” for depression, there are a variety of ways people have eased its symptoms. Some benefit from counseling or medication or diet, while others find help in various types of cognitive or creative therapies. Here are 25 of the best mental health tips people have used to fight depression.
It’s okay if you don’t feel like getting out of bed. It’s okay if you can’t take a shower. It’s okay if you lied & cancelled all plans. Depression is mentally exhausting. It’s okay if all you did today was breathe. Mental illness is as real as physical one.#HowIFightDepression
— Komal Shahid (@ArmedWithWords) June 19, 2019
#HowIFightDepression When you’re depressed, you feel so ugly inside,you don’t want to get out of bed, you don’t want to work out, you don’t wanna do anything. Guess what-DO IT ANYWAY
— Maurice Benard (@MauriceBenard) June 19, 2019
Medication. Therapy. Exercise. Give myself one small task, and complete it; repeat the next day. Remind myself tons of others are fighting it too. #HowIFightDepression
— Jeremy (@cinemasins) June 19, 2019
#HowIFightDepression? I don’t. You can’t fight it, that implies you can just win and it’s over. Depression isn’t a combat scenario. It’s about developing tools to cope with it, live alongside it and not let it bring you down.
— adam koebel (@skinnyghost) June 19, 2019
I took a walk around town with my 7 month old daughter. No stroller, I just carried her around cuz she likes to reach for the leaves on trees and bushes.
She started to fight off sleep, then her head dropped to my neck & she was out. I’d never felt happier.#HowIFightDepression
— Chner (@Tadasco42) June 19, 2019
I re-calibrate my definition of “successful” and “productive” and celebrate the tiny victories instead.
1. Getting out of bed. YAY!
2. Shower. DOUBLE YAY!
3. Getting dressed. I AM WINNING SO HARD!#HowIFightDepression
— Elizabeth Esther (@elizabethesther) June 19, 2019
Get off social media.
Have lunch with another friend who gets it.
Get a good night sleep.
Listen to Funky Kingston by Toots and the Maytals.
Medicine and talk therapy. #HowIFightDepression
— John Ross Bowie (@JohnRossBowie) June 19, 2019
#HowIFightDepression I don’t fight it. I accept it. I have even learned to appreciate it. I don’t think I’d be where I am today had I never had depression. I study my depression. I know when it’s coming and what to do when it arrives. We’re strong even at our weakest. Bring it.
— Dan Bell (@thisisdanbell) June 19, 2019
#HowIFightDepression – no matter how you do it, fight it. Remember that Depression is a liar – it takes real concerns & blows them out of proportion, obscures ability to see or believe in solutions, tells you ur stupid for even trying. Depression is a liar. Tell it to Fuck off.
— Ed the Sock (@EdtheSock) June 19, 2019
#HowIFightDepression By reminding myself that little things ARE accomplishments to be proud of. It is a big deal for me to get some cleaning done, or answer emails, or SING. Just because those things are easy for others, doesn’t mean they aren’t things for me to celebrate
— Suzannah (@SuzannahCo) June 19, 2019
1 thought at a time
1 step at a time
1 minute at a time
1 hour at a time
1 day at a time
1 week at a time
1 month at a time
Every little 1, leads to another, leads to another.
Beating depression is not a sprint, it is a marathon.
It can be overcome.
— MentalHealthMillion (@MentalHealthMil) June 19, 2019
I felt like a loser at the time going to see a doctor. It saved my life.
Honestly, depression steals joy and makes you believe you are worthless.
You aren’t. I assure you. I’m glad I got adjusted.
I’m glad I found the courage for help. #HowIFightDepression
— Tony Posnanski (@tonyposnanski) June 19, 2019
Everytime I break down, I’d wipe my tears. Everytime I feel weak, I’d give myself strength. Everytime I get anxious, I’d fight to be in control. Everytime I give up, I’d remind myself why I shouldn’t stop. Everytime I feel lonely, I’d keep myself company. #HowIFightDepression
— Anna Khayalan (@thekhayalan15) June 19, 2019
#HowIFightDepression is to stop feeling ashamed. shame makes you feel guilty. guilty for putting yourself first. stop doing that. you and your mental health are worth it.
— jordan doww (@JordanDoww) June 19, 2019
• Write it down — no matter what the thoughts may be
• Be honest and open about it
• Enjoy the little things
• Remember to laugh
• Feel it — let the emotions flow
• Remember that nobody is alone in this never ending battle… pic.twitter.com/CB9OoPPOlj
— Nic Allis (@allis_nic) June 19, 2019
#HowIFightDepression I recognize that it is not a weakness. I’t part of the human condition, and I am not the only one.
— Paula Poundstone (@paulapoundstone) June 19, 2019
— mental gymnastics🇨🇦 (@kaygreggs) June 19, 2019
You have to be uncomfortable enough to make a change. There came a point in dealing with depression, at least for me, that I said “I’m tired of feeling this way.”
Biggest thing I learned during my time in therapy. I’m still working on it.#HowIFightDepression
— Adam Savidan (@WakeUpSuper) June 19, 2019
Depression is like that boss that pops in your Story Mode when you least expect it. Only it’s Akuma and you’re Ryu in SF Alpha 3. But someone else can always hop in as Ken to help you fight him. You do NOT have to fight Depression alone. Remember that. #HowIFightDepression pic.twitter.com/gvdut5jw8B
— 켈리 Kelgogi 🔜 EVO (@kelgogi) June 19, 2019
I talk about it. I confront it. I don’t run from it or wallow in it. I ask you about yours and hope you’ll talk, too. Bring it out of the shadows and it loses it’s power of us. #HowIFightDepression
— Jimmie Whisman (@WhismanSucks) June 19, 2019
— 💛Ⓙⓔⓢⓢⓨ💛 (@urfriendjessy) June 19, 2019
1. CBT, now self-counselling
3. Swimming and running
4. Mindfulness meditation
5. Healthy diet
7. Writing and poetry
8. Love from family
9. Full-time work
10. Talking about #depression
I even wrote a best-selling book! 😊 pic.twitter.com/vEOdW4guGI
— Shubhrata Prakash (@shubhrata_p) June 19, 2019
Always keep moving forward, your speed is irrelevant.
Walk if you need to. Hobble. Stagger. Crawl.
Just don’t ever stop or give up.#HowIFightDepression
— Alex Steacy (@alexsteacy) June 19, 2019
I’m reading the #HowIFightDepression hashtag and I feel I need to acknowledge that somedays I don’t.
Some days I just curl up and hide and try to stay safe until the world feels a little more manageable.
And that’s okay…
— Dr Pooky Knightsmith (@PookyH) June 19, 2019
This 9-year-old boy helps me. When he was 2, he was attacked by a large animal & almost didn’t make it. He was outside & alone, & after fighting this animal off, he walked back to my house to ask for help. He’s a fighter and I am too. #HowIFightDepression pic.twitter.com/ty65Twa8cr
— elaine (@goofballisland) June 19, 2019
If you or someone you know is struggling, you are not alone. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or reach the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741741.