How Do I Get Over Depression?
-- Webster's dictionary defines depression as "a psycho-neurotic or psychotic
disorder marked by sadness, inactivity, and feelings of dejection." I believe
that one of the principal causes of depression is a sense of failure and frustration
caused by unwillingness to do what should be done or to stop doing what should
not be done. A person becomes ashamed and begins a process of self-depreciation.
Then, along with personal shame, comes a loss of fellowship with God, either real
Some years ago I knew a woman who was living with a man outside
of wedlock. She was a born-again Christian, active in religious matters. She knew
that cohabitation outside of marriage was wrong. She knew she was living a lie,
that she was in a relationship that was wrong; yet she did not have the power
to break it. She began to hate herself. You can imagine the depression that came
about because of this sense of failure.
As a result, she had overdosed on drugs
and was in a hospital in a near-death situation when I saw her. She had become
so depressed that she had tried to commit suicide, which is what happens in the
last stage of depression. Somewhere down inside her there was a voice saying,
"I have failed myself and failed God." She wanted God, but she was to weak to
break with sin. So she took what seemed the "easy" way out.
also be caused by a dietary deficiency. If you are lacking iron and certain of
the B-complex vitamins in your diet, you can become seriously depressed. This
type of depression needs to be corrected by wholesome nutrition along with massive
doses of vitamins and minerals. Junk food and excess caffeine should be avoided,
and you should exercise vigorously.
The worst thing about depression is that
it makes its victims withdraw and lapse into inactivity. A person has to get going
again and begin to help other people, going to church, going to work, or doing
anything other than sitting around feeling sorry for himself. Becoming active
is a key remedy for depression.
Also, a terrible tragedy or personal loss can
shock the system, bringing on a feeling of hopelessness and despair. Many times
these feelings are compounded by a failure to eat well and a failure to exercise
or get out among other people. As the withdrawal begins, a downward spiral takes
hold that needs to be broken.
But our question is: How do you get over the
depression? You have to recognize what is causing it. If it is sin, you have to
go to the root of the failure and do whatever it takes to get your life right
with God. If it is merely a sense of failure, examine your expectations. If they
are too high, change them to a more realistic level. If indeed there is a real
failure to perform, then grasp the task and do it.
If the depression has to
do with diet and exercise, begin to eat nutritious foods, take heavy doses of
therapeutic vitamins and minerals, and begin vigorous walking or other exercises.
In the case of someone who has suffered an emotional trauma, that person needs
to reach out for the help and support of friends. Be frank about your problem;
say, "I am terribly depressed. Will you please come and be with me? Will you pray
with me? Will you help me?" Try to open up to other people and draw them in. It
always helps to pray and read the Bible, which is the source of comfort and the
source of life (see Isaiah 41:10, Jeremiah 29:11-13, Hebrews 4:15-16).
all else, stop feeling sorry for yourself. Instead, reach out a hand of compassion
to someone whose grief and tragedy exceed your own.
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