Here’s a checklist I developed that I really resonate with, and other people have told me they like it too
It has 7 ways of looking at the common signs of depression
See what you think;
- Check what you are thinking
In depression, your thoughts are very negative and self critical
They can seem so overwhelming and relentless, like there is nothing you can do about them
Their negativity can make you feel helpless
“I’m worthless and no good to anyone, no one would miss me if i wasn’t here”
“I can’t do anything right, no wonder no one likes me”
“It’s hopeless, there’s nothing I can do”
“Nothing is ever going to go right for me in life, it never does”
While negative thinking seems to be relentless, when you try to think and concentrate on your work or daily tasks, your thinking can be dull, blank, forgetful
2. How do you feel?
In depression you can feel tired constantly, even exhausted most of the time, even when you don’t put in much effort
You can feel hopeless and even fall into feeling despair at your life and your situation, there seems no way out for you, nothing to look forward to
Restlessness is a sign of depression, where you can’t sit still, you can also feel irritated, even agitated, like you are spoiling for a fight
Feelings of resentment, bitterness and anger at your situation and towards others can be common too
Another common feeling in depression is to feel ‘zoned out’ or ‘out of it’ often
3. What is your daily mood like?
Is your mood mostly; low, flat, dis-interested, apathetic and are you only focused on yourself?
Your moods might be all over the place and it seems very confusing to you
You can feel okay one minute, angry at something minor the next, then sad and weepy, then flat and disinterested shortly after
Then your mood might be normal and you wonder what all the fuss was about
Waves of a deep sadness can come over you in depression, where you want to cry openly, but you have to hide it
If someone else tries to tell you about their life, in general conversation, your mood can be; cold, uncaring and you can be very critical of them in your head
4. Are you behaving differently?
Are you withdrawing and isolating yourself from the world more and more?
Do you spend an increasing amount of time on your own, away from everyone, even people you live with?
Even around people you like, are you closing down, hiding within yourself and staying overly quiet more often than not?
This is not a peaceful, calm type of quiet, like you feel relaxed inside yourself, but a dull uncomfortable quiet, where you hope no one talks to you because you have no idea how to explain what’s going on inside you
To stay isolated and on your own, you might make excuses to people why you can’t go out, that are just not true, but you just don’t care
But you could also be the opposite, where you are acting out around others in unusual or odd ways
Are you behaving in loud, disruptive and even obnoxious ways nowadays?
5. How much energy do you have?
Do you feel worn out often, like you are running on empty for no reason?
You might feel listless, weak or even exhausted often, even when you are putting in little effort to do anything
Having no energy can make you desperately want to relax to try and recharge for long periods, say on weekends, but no matter how much time you spend doing nothing, you can still feel exhausted
As well as having little or no physical energy, you can have next to no mental energy too
When you try to focus, think, make decisions and do your work, it can feel mentally tiring and exhausting
6. Are you sleeping poorly?
This seems to be more common than not; do you feel drowsy during the day and wide awake when it’s time for bed?
Your body’s time clock can seem to be all over the place in depression
Do you toss and turn for hours at night, with racing thoughts that just won’t slow down?
By the time you do get to sleep, you might only end up sleeping for 2 or 3 hours before you have to get up
Maybe you have no problem falling asleep at night, but you wake up in darkness most of the time for no reason and you feel wide awake almost instantly
In other words, you struggle to stay asleep, either way, a lack of sleep sees you yawning and feeling over tired during the day
One other type of sleep problem in depression is where you can sleep for a long time, like 10 to 12 hours, yet you still feel over tired and drowsy when you get up
It hasn’t refreshed you in any way
7. How motivated do you feel?
In depression, you can be so unmotivated often, that people accuse you of being lazy, but that is far from the truth
You can have no drive or enthusiasm, even for doing things you would always enjoy previously
Even when vitally important things need to get done, it can be an absolute struggle to get up and get going and take even the first step
You just seem to feel unmotivated about getting anything done and you don’t care about the consequences
Everyday movements seem to be a struggle, like you are pushing against a huge resistance
Just getting off the couch and taking your first steps towards doing something can be a real struggle
People describe it like having to push through quicksand or a thick treacle
How did you go with these signs of depression? If you have even just one or two of them, it’s wise to see your doctor or qualified health professional and tell them what you are dealing with
You could even write down what applies to you from above and show your qualified health professional
There is no shame in asking for help, we all need help in our lives, even the people around you who you think are bulletproof need help at times, they just won’t admit it to anyone
You are not alone and there are plenty of treatment options for you
Your chances of recovery are also very good, good luck.