Beyond Blue: Combating Depression in New York

New York City is the city that never sleeps. There is literally a bright light of activities everywhere you go. From visiting museums and bistros during the day to attending Broadway plays and nightclubs after dark, New York City shines no matter what. However, for those who are battling depression, New York can seem like a dark hole. You may not be able to see the beauty, the nature, the culture and the entertainment that lives and breathes around every corner; you may instead be swept up in a sea of sadness.

We all feel down once in a while. However, there is a big difference between having the blues and suffering from depression. Sometimes it can be hard to determine if your sadness is a cause for concern. It’s important to understand the difference between having a bad day and being depressed. A bad day can occur out of nowhere and leave you feeling emotionally drained. A rude comment at work, a fight with your spouse or a big credit card bill can all lead to feelings of sadness, exhaustion, failure and anger. It is when you cannot control these emotions and they start to take over your life that you may be suffering from depression. Depression can take on many forms which is why it can be so hard to self diagnose. While some who are dealing with depression in New York revert to their own little world, ignoring friends and colleagues and shutting the gate to society, others who suffer from depression may seem completely normal on the inside but turn into a wreck behind closed doors. There is no ‘right’ way to be depressed. You may feel withdrawn, useless, helpless, hopeless, lonely, anxious, nervous, tired, guilty or angry. You may feel the need to sleep 12 hours a day, or not sleep at all; you may lose your appetite, or have trouble controlling your eating habits; you may become a community recluse or an overly social party animal. Because of the multitude of confusion behind depression, there is really no way one way to prevent or cure this disorder.

The first thing you need to do when it comes to overcoming depression in New York City or elsewhere is to confide in a professional. Depression is not something that anyone should suffer through alone and, although there is no magic pill to eliminate depression, there are proven methods to treat and understand this serious disorder. Besides seeing a professional New York psychologist, therapist or other mental health professional you can also make some minor adjustments in your life to elevate your mood and work towards a happier tomorrow.

Gain a New Perspective: looking for a great way to combat those blues and rejuvenate your body? Try taking a hike. New York is filled with great outdoor hikes the Hudson Highlands and the Black Mountain Loop. Trekking up a hill can elevate your senses, your mood and your overall well being. Furthermore, a view from the top may give you a different perspective on your life.

Enjoy the Sunlight: sufferers of depression in New York City will often lock themselves inside. Rejecting society will not only cause you to sink even lower, but it can also limit your intake of sunlight, an important source of vitamin D and a proven alleviator of the blues. Resist the urge to stay behind closed doors all week. Walk instead of hiding on the subway; spend your lunch break outdoors; and soak up that warm glow.

Write it Out: sometimes it can help to write down your thoughts. You do not have to start a daily diary but using a journal to speak your mind can often help you relax and unload. If you are feeling down, try typing your thoughts out and see where it gets you. Many people swear that writing down their fears and concerns actually leads to a solution. Although this may not be the case when suffering from clinical depression, writing down your thoughts can relieve some of that anxiety and tension that is bringing you down.

Stay away from the Negatives: there are so many positive things about life in New York; however, there are also many negative influences surrounding our lives and this negativity can be contagious. Certain people, certain activities and certain events may trigger disappointment, fear, frustration, guilt, anxiety and negativity. Try to identify these things and then avoid them if possible. Look to positive people to be around and happy places to spend your time. After all, positive thoughts lead to positive results. Getting rid of the negatives in your life will help detoxify your body and lead to a more positive outlook.

Depression in New York is a leading concern for many people. Unfortunately, there is no black and white line when it comes to depression. In fact, depression comes in many shades of grey which is why it is so important to accept the help you need. New Yorkers have enough to worry about without depression bringing them down as well. If you believe you are suffering beyond the blues, then look for support from a trained professional. Shedding some light on depression in New York will lead to a brighter understanding of this dark disorder.