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Jan 12, 2023

Depression: How to Manage Its Symptoms and Improve Your Mental Health

Helen Hofer

Living with depression can be a difficult experience, but there are ways of managing its symptoms and improving your mental health. In this article, we’ll look at five key strategies for reducing the impact of depression on your life. 

1) Make time for yourself

It’s important to set aside time each day just for you. Don’t try to fit too much into one day; instead make sure you have some alone time where you can focus on activities that help reduce stress and promote relaxation such as yoga or meditation. Taking care of yourself is essential in managing depressive symptoms.

2) Connect with friends and family

Having a strong support system will provide emotional reassurance during tough times. Consider reaching out to those close to you even if it feels overwhelming; being able to talk about what you’re going through might lessen the load significantly (American Psychological Association, 2020). 

3) Get active

Exercise has been shown to be an effective treatment for depression because it releases endorphins which help improve mood (National Institute of Mental Health, 2018). Even something as simple as taking regular walks outdoors can help reduce depressive symptoms over time so get moving whenever possible!  

4) Reach out for professional help

Speaking with a mental health counselor or therapist could be beneficial in tackling more severe forms of depression head-on (American Psychiatric Association, 2020). If financial constraints limit access to counseling services then consider seeking free community resources like hotlines or online therapy sessions instead.

5) Focus on self-efficacy

Lastly cultivating feelings of self-efficacy is critical in dealing with depression effectively (Seligman & Maier 1969). Self-help books like The Panic Workbook by Reid Wilson PhD., Feeling Good by David D Burns MD., or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy For Dummies by Rhena Branch PsyD offer useful guidance from an expert perspective when working towards improved mental wellbeing (Wilson 2017;Burns 1980;Branch 2008).

In conclusion, allowing yourself plenty of down time combined with staying connected socially and exercising regularly may all prove helpful in lowering levels of distress associated with depression while also promoting positive mental health overall. And don’t forget that if necessary seeking professional assistance could prove invaluable when looking towards achieving sustained recovery over the long term.


American Psychological Association. (2020). Supporting Friends or Family with a Mental Illness. Retrieved from

American Psychiatric Association. (2020). Psychotherapy. Retrieved from https://www./psychiatry/org//dsmlibrary/pages//psychotherapy..html 

National Institute of Mental Health.(2018). Exercise for Stress and Anxiety. Retrieved from https://www./nimh..nih../health./publication///stressandanxiety/#part_145397

Seligman, M., & Maier, S., F.(1969). Failure to Escape Traumatic Shock Journal of Experimental Psychology, 81(1), 1-9.

Wilson, R.(2017) The Panic Workbook 5th Edn Oakland CA: New Harbinger Publications Inc.

Burns D D(1980) Feeling Good The New Mood Therapy 2nd Edn ,New York NY : Avon Books.

Branch R (2008) Cognitive Behavioral Therapy For Dummies Hoboken NJ : Wiley Publishing Inc.