Originally Posted by BaggagePatrol
Yoga. Jogging. Detox and diet. Depression is a physical reality, so I approach it from a physical standpoint. Hard to feel great if you're not sleeping, eating or moving your body in a healthy way! Hard to feel crappy when you're exercising, eating delicious and nutritious food and taking time to detox and relax the body!
This may be true for someone who is trying to get past occasional times of feeling down or sad, but it wouldn't really help to tell that to a person with chronic depression. When one is chronically depressed, the fact that exercise and moving the body might feel good is not very likely going to be enough of a motivation to actually get up and do it. For me, something has to click inside my head to prompt me to do something that will make me feel better. We all know what's good for us, but oftentimes when you're deeply depressed, knowing what you could be doing or should be doing and how much better you would feel if you got up and did some yoga (or whatever), only makes the depression worse
. There's a step in there between being depressed and doing something about it - that click.
If wanting to feel better and being relaxed was enough, chronic depression wouldn't be much of an issue. Every depressed person wishes they felt better. We just feel too stuck, lethargic, hopeless, and unmotivated to get out of it. Plenty of times, somebody had told me, "You have a gym membership, go use it - you'll feel so much better!", so I got dressed in my workout clothes, sat down on my coach to tie the laces on my sneakers, and soon became lost in my thoughts of how shitty my life was, only to wind up laying down and going to sleep instead of going out to exercise. Life in general is tiresome when you are chronically depressed.
And yes, I agree with Vixtoria that asking someone to take a walk with you, or go grocery shopping, visit a museum, etc., is a much better way to motivate someone to get out in the fresh air and move their body, than to try only verbally encouraging the depressed person to do something we think would be fun or energizing. Lots of times, being around people really helps, especially if the depression makes one tend to isolate, and not wanting to disappoint someone will get me out of myself. But it's tricky because you need to be compassionate without being pushy when trying to encourage someone to go out with you.