Mental Health

How to Manage Anxiety and Depression Like a Pro!

September 2, 2019
It's time to put your mental health as a priority. Find out in this post the best ways to manage anxiety and depression.

Being diagnosed with “Anxiety” and “Major Depressive Disorder” isn’t something you expect to hear. I’ve struggled with my mental health for years and have experienced some of the darkest times of my life. The feelings that I had can’t be explained, but let’s just say you probably wouldn’t wish it on your worst enemy.

Anxiety and depression look different on everyone. Some people may be able to put a smile on their face while continuing to live their everyday lives while others, such as me, ends up in the bed all day with the blinds shut. After hitting rock bottom last year, I promised myself I wouldn’t let myself get that bad again. That’s when I started to wonder how I could manage anxiety and depression instead of allowing it to take control of my life.

I want to share these tips with you and I hope practicing them will help you gain more control of your mental health. Let me go ahead and make my quick disclaimer:

Disclaimer: These tips that I’m sharing have been working for me. The information in this post shouldn’t be looked at as professional or medical advice. If you ever need help, please reach out to your doctor.

Manage Anxiety and Depression With These Tips:

Write in a Journal

One way to manage anxiety and depression is writing in a journal.

Journaling is a way to write down everything that’s on your mind in a safe space. You can release all of your stress and anxieties that you’ve been holding in. You can either buy a personal journal or download an app on your phone. On my iPhone, I use an app called “Journey” and it has become the perfect place for me to get things off my chest.

Although you can write down all of the challenges you’re facing, it’s also good to focus on the positives. When you explain what’s bothering you, figure out a way to turn it around and ask yourself “What lesson can I learn from this situation?” Another thing I love to do in my journal is to write down affirmations. Affirmations are positive statements that can help you overcome negative thoughts. Looking at affirmations reminds me that my problems are only temporary.

Writing down affirmations can remind you that your problems are only temporary. These positive statements can help you overcome negative thinking. Click To Tweet

I’ve always been the type of person to push my problems to the back burner and not talk to anyone about it. I’d let all of my emotions build up and once I reach my breaking point I end up going off on someone; sometimes it’s not the person who brought the problems. It can get tiring holding things in since it puts unnecessary weight on your shoulders.

Keeping a journal has helped me to easily and quickly write down everything I’m holding back. This has been helpful when I’m overwhelmed!

Find a Therapist

Society has made it seem like you’re crazy if you have to see a therapist, however, that’s not true! Realizing that you need help is OK. Many people have a difficult time admitting something is wrong, so you should be proud that you’re taking the steps needed to improve your mental health.

Society has made it seem like you're crazy if you decide to go to therapy, however, realizing that you need help is OK. Be proud that you're taking the steps needed to improve your mental health. Click To Tweet

Over the last few years, I’ve seen a total of 4 therapists. It was awkward and I always gave up on my sessions because I didn’t feel comfortable talking to a stranger about my crazy life. It’ll take time and patience to find the perfect therapist for you, don’t give up on your search! If I didn’t make the decision to go back to therapy this year, I wouldn’t have found my current therapist who is amazing.

There is someone out there for everyone, however, you must be willing to put in the work to research and make an appointment to go.

Identify Your Triggers + Set Boundaries

Each person has their own set of triggers, what do I mean by that? Well, have you ever been around a certain person or in a situation that all of a sudden makes you feel some type of way? That’s a trigger. Some events and experiences that you’ve gone through may cause your anxiety symptoms to begin or worsen them. It’s important to identify what your triggers are and set boundaries.

Identifying your triggers and setting boundaries will help you manage your anxiety and depression. These are important for your peace of mind. Click To Tweet

Once you identify what those triggers are, this is when you can start working towards avoiding them and finding ways to cope when it happens. Working with a therapist on this challenge is helpful. They can help you figure out how to overcome certain triggers in a healthier way. Don’t feel bad if you need extra help to do this, therapists are here for a reason!

Setting boundaries is important so you can keep your peace of mind. For example, if you know hanging around a certain person triggers your negative thoughts and emotions, it would be good to not be around them as often. One boundary you can set is to only be around people who are encouraging and give off positive vibes. Sometimes you have to love people from a distance and keep your mental health as a priority.

Set a Limit On How Much You Worry

Set a limit on how much you worry each day.

I recently learned this tip in therapy and it has been helpful. Another way to manage your anxiety and depression is to limit the amount of time you worry each day. The majority of the time, our negative thoughts never happen. We can start overthinking certain situations which will cause your mental health to become worse.

Another way to manage anxiety + depression is to limit the amount of time you worry each day. Click To Tweet

Set a timer and take 15 minutes each day to worry about any and everything. Once those 15 minutes are up, push it to the side and go on about your day. At first, I didn’t understand how this could be helpful, but let me explain it further.

There are some days when I’m constantly thinking about something bad happening from the time I wake up until the time I go to sleep. By the end of the day, not only do I feel miserable, but I feel mentally exhausted too. This is why setting a limit on how much you worry is best and will help you in the long run.

If you aren’t able to change the situation that you’re worried about, then it’s something that needs to be put on the back burner.

Challenge Your Negative Thoughts

The final tip you can incorporate in your daily life to manage anxiety and depression is to challenge your negative thoughts. I also learned this in therapy and it has been effective so far. At some point, we all struggle with negative thoughts; we tend to be overly critical and talk down on ourselves. When a negative thought pops up in your mind, it’s good to ask yourself whether or not it makes sense.

Challenging your negative thoughts isn’t something that’ll happen overnight, you have to work daily towards that goal. Once you start becoming mindful of your thoughts, you’ll realize how ridiculous and exaggerated they are.

Related Post: How to Get Rid of Negative Thoughts and Emotions

Get into the habit of turning your negative thoughts into a positive and question whether or not you're being overly critical. This will help you gain control over your mental health. Click To Tweet

Learning the best ways to manage your anxiety and depression will take patience and consistency. Don’t expect everything to go away overnight.

Everyone has their own share of challenges each day. Although venting to your friends and family can be helpful, don’t be afraid to step out and seek professional help. Find a therapist in your area that you can start seeing regularly. Even if your first or second therapist doesn’t work out, don’t give up! As I said in the beginning, this is my 4th therapist, what if I would’ve decided to not go anymore? I wouldn’t have found the perfect fit for me!

Once again, the content in this post shouldn’t be viewed as medical or professional advice. Reach out to your primary doctor if you need help or tips on better ways to manage your own anxiety and depression. Everything won’t work for everyone, however, I hope this post helped you realize you’re not alone and we’re in this fight together.

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  • Reply Jasmine September 2, 2019 at 3:10 pm

    I’m so glad you shared this! I also battled with depression and anxiety and almost didn’t talk to my doctor about it. I’m so glad I got help! Your tips are very helpful!

    • Reply Madisen September 3, 2019 at 10:44 am

      Thank you for reading sis! I’m glad you decided to speak up so you could get help. I usually like to keep things to myself but I knew I had to admit there was something wrong and get the help I need! ♥️

  • Reply Tiffany September 2, 2019 at 6:01 pm

    This was such a food post with practical tips that could actually help. As someone who works in neuroscience research dealing with MDD and someone who deals with anxiety at times; this post is very helpful and much appreciated!

    • Reply Madisen September 3, 2019 at 10:45 am

      Thank you for reading! I’m glad it was helpful for you ♥️

  • Reply Drea September 2, 2019 at 9:54 pm

    Thank you for this. I have been struggling myself and trying to get myself into therapy. I have been trying to write daily speaking positivity into my my day but I have those days where nothing works and have a complete meltdown. I’m working at things one day at a time.

    • Reply Madisen September 3, 2019 at 10:48 am

      I still have those same days too sis! We will always go through challenges that will cause us to breakdown, but the important part is we shouldn’t let ourselves hit rock bottom and stay there. It’s something we all have to work on one day at a time. Thank you for reading and sharing that! ♥️

  • Reply Rakia September 2, 2019 at 11:33 pm

    Great post Maddie! I’ve struggled with this all year and I’ve been taking these exact steps, still struggling with a little but it’s so good to see others open up about it and be willing to help.

    • Reply Madisen September 3, 2019 at 10:50 am

      Thank you for reading love! I’m really glad you’re taking the right steps and keeping your mental health as a priority. And we will continue to struggle at times, but just know you’re not alone in this fight and every challenge we go through is temporary ♥️

  • Reply Bennetta Spann September 3, 2019 at 4:35 pm

    This is an important subject that many do not want to talk about it. Happy that you continue to speak on topics that need to be in the fore front

    • Reply Madisen September 3, 2019 at 10:36 pm

      Thank you sis! You’re right it isn’t talked about enough. I want people to realize it’s not a bad thing if you need help. People shouldn’t worry about what someone else will think!

  • Reply Aisha September 3, 2019 at 7:08 pm

    This post is amazing! Thank you for sharing the AWESOME TIPS! I’m going to share this with someone who is near and dear to my heart and use it for myself

    • Reply Madisen September 3, 2019 at 10:37 pm

      Thank you sis! And yes feel free to share it with anyone! I know people may feel like they’re alone, but we all have our own challenges. Some people choose not to speak about it out of fear.

  • Reply Tiffof alltrades September 11, 2019 at 12:33 pm

    this was such a great post . When I use to be a psychiatric Nurse it really made me more of an empath. We are all going through stuff.

    • Reply Madisen September 11, 2019 at 8:14 pm

      Thank you for reading sis! And yes we all have our challenges and we never know what someone else is going through. That’s why I always try to treat people with love and respect.

  • Reply Kenya Chestnut September 20, 2019 at 5:00 am

    This post is awesome girl . Talking about personal mental health is very tough and these are some solid tips . I love that you mentioned setting boundaries that has been my main goal this year and it has lead me to attract people who respect and love me in my life .

    Really enjoyed the post and your website
    Kenya Chestnut

    • Reply Madisen September 20, 2019 at 8:14 am

      Thank you for reading sis! I was really nervous writing this post but I’m glad you guys have enjoyed it. I’m still working on setting boundaries, they are so important to have and I’m glad I realized that! Thank you! ♥️

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