For those who suffer from depression,
mornings are often the worst time.
Once the day gets started, a person’s mood
usually lifts and energy will return.
But those first few moments of having
to adjust to a day when everything
feels bleak is beyond challenging.
Here are 6 proven ways to make
depressing mornings easier!
1. Use Light to Wake Up
I’ve written before about how it’s
easier to get out of bed in the morning
if you can use light, and not just an
audible alarm, to wake you up.
You can buy a fancy light alarm clock,
or get an inexpensive timer at your
hardware store and plug your bedside
table lamp into it. Either way, waking
up to a lighted room is easier and much
less depressing, especially during winter.
2. Stock Your Bedside Table
Here’s what to put within arm’s reach
of your bed: a glass of water, your
psychotropic medication(s) in a little
cup, and a low-sugar protein/energy bar.
When your alarm goes off, you open
that protein bar and eat it, then take
your meds. Yes, you’ve got to set it
up the night before. It will be worth it.
You don’t have to get out from under
your nice, warm blankets to let your
meds start working and get your blood
sugar stabilized to help your mood.
3. Get an Emotional Uplift
Starting the day with depression requires
that you put other, more positive thoughts
into your mind as soon as possible. Have
a book or list of positive affirmations, or
other inspirational material on your bedside
table to give your mind a helping hand up.
Need some ideas? Positive Affirmations
4. Get Moving ASAP!
It’s the last thing you want to do when you
are depressed. It also just happens to be the
best thing you can do: Move! Go get your
favorite caffeine delivery system (coffee or tea)
unless that will cause anxiety symptoms to worsen.
Then hit the treadmill, bike, or take a walk.
Depression can increase body aches and pain,
so if it hurts to move, just stay in bed or drop
to the floor and do some gentle stretching.
Movement makes a huge difference in your
ability to effectively cope with depression.
5. Don’t Think
What I mean by “Don’t Think” is that morning
is not a good time for you to ask yourself if you
really want to get up much less ponder the
meaning of it all. This is true for everyone!
Morning is not a time to engage your brain.
Just go on autopilot for the first hour or so:
take your meds, read your affirmations,
move your body, get some caffeine,
make your bed, head to the shower,
get dressed. Then you can think.
Forward movement begets more forward
movement, so that’s all we’re looking for…
not good answers as to why you should get up.
Those will come later!
6. Plan for Mornings at Night
You can see that if you’re going to have an
easier time in the morning, it helps to set
things up the night before. This is a secret
shared by most highly functional people,
and you can use it even when depressed.
Put out your water, pills, protein bar,
affirmations, and workout clothes the
night before. Set your coffeemaker to
go off when you want your first cup.
Make it easy on yourself.
It’s hard enough coping with depression.
You deserve to not have it any harder.