Saturday, 26 August 2023 04:49

People are sharing habits and hobbies that help them deal with their depression

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According to Columbia University, in 2020, 1 in 10 Americans reported feeling depressed. So, since it's Mental Health Awareness Month, I thought it would be important to share the answers from this Reddit thread where Reddit user u/Folded_Towel_ asked: "Depressed people of Reddit, what are your hobbies that keep you balanced?" Here's what they had to say:

1. "Washing dishes on a regular basis [to avoid] sink clutter and blasting my favorite music so I remember how to be a human."


2. "One thing that worsens my depression is routine and monotony, so I do one new thing every month. Going somewhere I've never visited (could be anything from a local coffee shop to a day trip), trying a new craft, baking or cooking something I've never eaten, etc. This keeps me maintaining a sense of awe and curiosity."


3. "Video games always helped me escape the depressing real world."


4. "Crocheting. It's repetitive, calming, and creative and you get the feeling of at least a bit of productivity."


5. "Reading fiction (which kind of sounds counterproductive to sanity)."


"I used to adore reading and would get through two or three books per week. My depression then got much worse, and I just couldn’t seem to focus/felt like I didn’t deserve to enjoy anything anymore (that came from my counselor). I have adapted it now by listening to audiobooks! I’ll play them whilst out with my dog, doing housework and driving, etc. Music isn’t good for me, as I worry over the melody and don’t concentrate, whereas I have to pay attention to the words of the story."


6. "Looking at the ceiling is just the best hobby."


"Glad I'm not the only one that does this all day. I tried explaining to my therapist last week and she looked so confused."


7. "I recently started wood carving, it's calming and pretty fun. So far I've made a little duck."


8. "I just sit outside in the sun for hours."


9. "Sometimes, when it's quiet in the house and I can hear the steady rhythm of my wife's knitting needles clicking away, it sends me to a very peaceful place. Just knowing she's there and happy to be with me, working away on her next incredible project, fills my heart up so much."


10. "Gardening and growing food is so incredibly satisfying for the body and the soul. It's a sort of meditation when you are out in nature with your hands in the dirt."


11. "My wife and I do try to get out of the house for the occasional day trip every couple of weeks, which is the one thing that actually feels good for us. We either accompany my family to take our little niece somewhere, or we'll go for a walk around a lake or something. We love taking our niece to farms and sometimes we'll just go to a farm even without her — it's a bit weird being two adults wandering around a children's petting farm without a child, but being outside around animals is good for our mental health."


12. "Bird photography. I get into a meditative state that takes my mind off things that are troubling me."


13. "Get a big coffee and take a long train or bus to nowhere while listening to music and crying and pretending I'm the main character."


14. "So much guitar."


"Playing an instrument in general is very therapeutic. People just have to stick with it through the learning curve and then the fun truly starts. I’m still kinda new but it makes me happy when I play guitar and I’m really on it. I play drums here and there but that’s therapeutic because you get to smash shit that hardly breaks."


15. "Interacting with animals. Adopt a shelter animal. Or if that's too much of a commitment, foster some babies, like puppies or kittens. Try feeding stray cats and birds. Nothing brightens up a dull day than seeing an animal fed and happy and purring on your lap."


16. "Motorcycles. I find the playfulness of riding combined with the focus and attention needed to operate safely, a welcome break from office work."


17. "I am a writer. When I start to get into a depressive spiral, I start worldbuilding and/or plotting my next novel. It doesn’t always work, but even a 30% success rate is way better than nothing."


18. "Fish. It's hard to be depressed watching a happy wee fish just relax in life. Fish don't need any shit to relax."


19. "No longer depressed, but I’d like to throw this out there in case it helps anyone. Solo traveling really boosted my self-confidence and made me feel like I could do anything. I met tons of people from other cultures while bouncing around Europe staying in hostels in my early/mid-20s. I highly recommend giving it a try if you’re around that age and feeling stuck in your hometown."



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