Depression is a commonly misdiagnosed or entirely overlooked problem. It’s very likely that at least one person at your office has depression. It could even be you. The symptoms are pretty difficult to recognize even for those who suffer from it, which is why it’s good to be prepared. If you’re able to recognize and treat it on time, it might not end up having any effect on your personal life and productivity at work. Here are some things you can do to better cope with depression in a work setting.
1. Don’t ignore the signs
Depression can be a tricky thing to notice. You could spend years next to a depressed person and never tell that they’re affected by it. This is because of the classical misconceptions of what depression should look like. A depressed individual might not be curled up in a fetal position crying or moping, it’s very likely that they are doing the opposite. The symptoms can vary drastically.
A smile on their face doesn’t mean that they are okay. They could be compensating for how they feel on the inside. If you can’t tell by how they look, how are you supposed to recognize the signs? Well, there are some very recognizable symptoms of depression.
How they treat themselves and their looks is a very good start. If they let themselves go, that could be a sign of deteriorating mental health. Spending too much time at work to avoid problems at home is something depressed people are known for. It becomes easier to deal with work than to deal with other people.
Worst of all, those who are affected by it rarely notice it manifesting on themselves. If you note some of these signs, you might want to take some steps to remedy it.
2. Take care of your body
People often talk about physical health and mental health as two different things. However, the physical and mental aspects of your body are very much intertwined. One influences the other significantly. It’s one of the reasons depressed people find themselves gaining or losing weight in short periods of time.
Regular physical activity can affect your brain in very positive ways. Even the tiniest bit of running will stimulate nerves that connect with the pleasure centers in your brain. These won’t solve your issues, but they can have a significant impact on your mental well-being. It will also help you with your sleep schedule and memory retention.
Nutrition is a big part of the treatment of depression. Certain minerals and vitamins have been shown to curb depressive symptoms. Research has been done into zinc and magnesium supplements and they show massive improvements compared to control groups that do not consume them. Eating at proper intervals is just as important as it can give your schedule some regularity.
3. Talk to your employer
The stigma surrounding mental health issues is readily apparent to anyone. The implications of depression can frighten employers and employees alike. If your employee isn’t capable of maintaining their previous quality of work, how do you handle this? These types of scenarios frighten those who suffer from depression and they rarely come forward with their issues. However, talking to your employer could be a good first step towards solving some of your problems at work.
A lot of companies consider behavior management workshops like the ones at Behaviour Zen in order to help their workers improve their mental health. Alongside these workshops, employers will alleviate some of the stress their employees get by reassigning certain kinds of projects. As long as the quality of work and enthusiasm to progress remain, you’ll easily come to a mutually beneficial understanding.
4. Reach out to your family
Keeping everything work related exclusively to the office is going to cause you problems down the road. Your mind has already exhausted options at work, which is why you might need to branch out for help from your family. They can offer you a supportive environment that will make your problems easier to bare.
At the same time, just talking about your issues can lead to improvements. Part of the reason depression takes hold of people is that they feel that they are alone and not part of a community. Your family can remind you that you’re part of a whole that is both supportive and understanding of your issues.
They will also encourage you to seek help from a mental health professional. This kind of small push could be the reason you take the plunge and find help.
Dealing with depression at work can be pretty difficult. You’re trying to fight your lack of motivation while also avoiding the stigma associated with diminished mental health. Luckily, today’s world is a bit more accepting of mental health problems and there are avenues that you can use to help you solve them. Even your work environment might help you with this goal. As long as you communicate with your employer and health professional openly, you’ll find it a lot easier to cope with your problems.