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It's hard when you can't function as well as you're used to, but slogging on doesn't work when you're in a downward spiral.
When you're at a crossroads in terms of your mental health, you need to really say, 'OK, I'm going to ask for five days off. That might mean the difference between me not having a mental health breakdown, or needing to take additional time off.
"To stay with it and maintain an independent and productive life -- it's important to identify it, get the appropriate treatment and then stick with that treatment."
With chronic conditions -- like depression -- you have workplace protections against discrimination.
Many workplaces have employee assistance programs that include confidential mental health services. Also, look into your health insurance coverage for treatment including counseling and medication.
Withdrawal is a symptom of depression, not a solution. Work-social gatherings meant to be fun can feel more like torture.
You might be able to manage five minutes, maybe catch up on a work discussion with a colleague in a quiet corner, then leave. If you've shared your struggle with an office buddy or two, they can help by hanging out with you away from the action.
If you're not dealing with depression but want to be more attuned to your colleagues, step away from the computer every so often.
Just walk the hall, poke your head in a few offices and say hello... It never does more harm than good to ask how somebody's doing: 'You seem a little low today; is everything OK?'
You're not alone – and once you start talking about this condition, you'll find that there are more people who are sympathetic to you than those who are critical.
While you're being proactive about treatment, take it one day at a time and be very gentle with yourself.
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Depression is a serious mental illness and can be overlooked by friends and family because the depressed person expends precious energy just to camouflage the problem.
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The common treatments of depression are antidepressant medications and therapy, which has a large relapse rate.
However, if mindfulness is part of the treatment, the relapse rate declines. What is being pointed out is that mindfulness is effective when it is part of a treatment, and not so much on its own.
You may feel too exhausted to talk, ashamed at your situation, or guilty for neglecting certain relationships. But this is just the depression talking.
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Do things that relax and energize you. This includes following a healthy lifestyle, learning how to better manage stress, setting limits on what you’re able to do, and scheduling fun activities into your day.
Even if your depression doesn’t lift immediately, you’ll gradually feel more upbeat and energetic as you make time for fun activities.
Working with a therapist or support group is the best way to help you cope with your symptoms, which in turn will help you better manage your professional life.
It’s key to find trusted friends or family who can support you through this difficult time.
Participating in a depression and anxiety therapy group is a great way to learn coping strategies for the workplace from other participants.