Learning To Recognize & Adapt To Your Personal Depression Triggers
Depression is hard to deal with while you are trapped in a depressive episode. However, once you have identified that you struggle with depression, you can find your triggers and begin to create a plan with how to deal with your personal depression triggers. Below is a list of the common depression triggers with a suggestion on how to deal with each one.
Intimate Relationship Issues
No relationship is perfect. There will be tension and strife in the best of romantic partnerships, but this may be more than the depressed brain can handle. Even if the fighting isn’t over serious topics like finances, this can be enough to trigger a depressive episode.
- Adaptation – Work on strengthening your relationship and communication skills with your partner when you are doing well. As you strengthen those aspects of your relationship, you will be better able to communicate when you aren’t okay and your partner will be more capable when it comes to knowing what you do need. There will also be fewer misunderstandings that may trigger a fight as you build up your relationship.
Family Conflict Trigger
As hard as it can be to maintain a strong relationship with your romantic partner, it becomes increasingly difficult as children are added to the mix. Time together is put on the back burner as you work on raising your family, which can increase fighting with your spouse as you two aren’t connecting anymore. Your children will also be affected by the tension and will try to distance themselves. So when all your closest relationships are suffering, you are in the prime position to have a depressive episode triggered.
- Adaptation – Understand that you can only do so much as a parent, and recognize when you need to bring outside help in to work with your children. Therapy, both individual and family, can help open lines of communication and identify other underlying problems while preventing future issues. In less difficult cases, making time for family adventures can help you to reconnect with your family and stave off more conflict that may trigger your depression.
The change of the seasons can trigger a depressive episode called seasonal affective disorder. This can also be compounded with depression that is felt over the winter holidays, as the majority of people who suffer from seasonal affective disorder become depressed during the fall through winter seasons.
- Adaptation – Adding a bit more regular exercise can be highly effective in combating seasonal depression triggers. While making sure you are engaging in exercise you enjoy, you can give your brain a literal boost of happiness from the endorphins (pleasure hormones). This also has the added bonus of helping you combat any emotional eating you may engage in over the holidays.
Most adults spend at least 40 hours a week at work, and that is a lot of time to spend around things that can potentially trigger your depression. Whether it is a co-worker who is creating problems for you or the workload is more than you can handle, these issues can feel out of your control and trigger the hopelessness associated with depression.
- Adaptation – If possible, try to resolve inner workplace conflict either one-on-one or through the facilitation of HR. If you workload is too much, address it with your immediate manager. These problems must be met head-on, or they will continue to plague you. If it is an overall toxic workplace, spruce up your resume and begin applying elsewhere. Taking this simple action can relieve some of the tension you feel and help you feel less depressed and trapped in a bad situation.
Should your own depression symptoms fall outside of those listed above, be sure to track them in a journal. This will help you in the future identify your personal depression triggers and once you know what you are dealing with it will become easier for you to work through your depression.