Overcome depression with these 6 Strategies

overcome depression

First off, I want to say I’m sorry that you or someone you love has to overcome depression. It’s one of those invisible things that no one else can truly see in its entirety and affects everyone differently. Depression can feel like a heavy fog, a stressful daily attack, or an overwhelming burden. No matter how it feels, you are not alone, and you can overcome depression.


“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

Jeremiah 29:11


6 Strategies for Overcoming Depression


1. Recognize the symptoms.

The first step in overcoming depression is labeling it so you can take action against it. When you’re depressed, you feel down all the time and generally have an excessive amount of negative feelings—anxiety, insecurity, irritability, guilt, hopelessness, and lack of self-esteem, energy, and interest in what you usually love. You might also see a decline in your sleep, appetite, or ability to concentrate. And you may be having thoughts of harming yourself, in which case I want you to talk to a prevention lifeline. 


2. Overcome the stigma.

We don’t like to open up and show weakness. We’re used to downplaying everything and saying, “No, I’m okay.” But it’s okay not to be okay. Jesus modeled this for us by praying to his Father on the Mount of Olives, saying, “Father, if you are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me” (New Living Translation, Luke 22:24). Be like Jesus and ask for help, fully pouring out your feelings to God, family, and friends. It’s okay to need help and get professional treatment to overcome depression.


3. Be Kind to Yourself.

I was a quarterback before the era of sports psychologists. These professionals are paid a handsome sum of money to help athletes control their own inner narrative. Why? Because when they decrease stress and negative thoughts and visualize success, they can perform their best. 

You might not be pitching in the World Series anytime soon, but your self-talk is just as important for overcoming depression. It changes the way you understand yourself and your life. When you hear that negative voice, ask yourself where it comes from—a critical parent, sibling, partner, or boss from your present or past. Then, ask God to show you His grace for you and how to show yourself grace, too.


4. Think about your health.

The more science studies the body and the mind, the more we understand that the two are inextricably linked. What you are going through is real, but to overcome your depression, you must give your mental health the best chance to improve by also improving your physical health. Make sure you are getting enough sleep at regular hours, following healthy eating habits, drinking water, and getting daily exercise.


5. Schedule pleasant activities or events.

Depression usually grows because you can’t even work up the energy to do the things you enjoy. That’s why putting something on the calendar is so important for overcoming depression—even if it’s something as simple as getting a cup of coffee with a friend or telling someone that you’re going on a walk after work. The accountability will help you hurdle your feelings of low energy, follow through, and experience the things you used to enjoy. This can be a huge help to combat hopelessness and start to overcome depression.  


6. Focus on the relationships that lift you up.

It can be easy to let one bad relationship sink you. As humans, we tend to let the negative have an outsized effect on us. We focus on why we can’t win someone’s approval or learn to get along with them. Instead of fixating on the negative, lean on your positive relationships. God is always there, an infinite source of unconditional love. Plus, look for true friends or family in your life who can help you overcome depression by building you up and offering meaningful, positive connections.

Huddling with 2-3 men to encourage and equip one another can be one of the most life-giving things in your life. Explore MenHuddle now and see how a group of men can commit to deep friendship and bring each other closer to God.