It’s no secret that when you’re feeling low or are in a state of depression, there are a multitude of things that can make it better or worse. Of course I’m not saying that a bubble bath and a cup of tea can cure your depression or change the way you feel but there are small little things that can make the day a bit more bearable in that moment.

And there are, of course, things that have the complete opposite effect. Indulging in too many of the things on this list can definitely make your depression worse – at least it does for me. And 2022 has not been the kindest on my mental health so far, so I’ve certainly had to take of what I’m doing and consuming, to ensure it doesn’t get any worse.

Whether you’re going through a period of low mood or you’re in a full-on state of depression (regardless if you’re officially diagnosed or not, I certainly don’t think it’s vital to be diagnosed by a doctor. I’m not but I know I’m suffering with depression), eliminating the things on this list to varying degrees will definitely help.

Of course, this isn’t going to cure you. But like I said earlier, it’s all about making the day a little more bearable in that moment. And if avoiding something you know is probably going to make you spiral even further, then it’s all worth it, in my opinion.

Here are 8 things you should avoid if you’re feeling low or depressed:

Toxic people

This is a really difficult one because we all know that simply removing toxic people from our lives isn’t as easy as people pretend it is. Which is why I prefer to manage relationships with those I don’t align with, rather than saying you should remove them from your life completely.

But when you’re in a low mood, there are always going to be people who make it worse and it’s usually unintentional. If this is the case, you might want to limit the amount you see or speak to them and ensure you have a self care ritual or self care kit in practice for after you spend time with them to help you decompress.

Big decisions

Making big decisions when you’re not in the right headspace is REALLY tough. Sometimes it’s unavoidable but if it is, then I think you should hold off of making big decisions until you’re feeling a bit better.

The way we’re feeling can really skew our perception of things, so chances are, you’re much more likely to make the completely wrong choice for you, when you really didn’t mean to.

The news

The news this year (actually, over the last 2.5 years) has been absolutely grim. It’s heartbreak, after tragedy, after alarming story. It’s no wonder so many people feel on edge. When you’re in a particularly vulnerable frame of mind, it’s definitely worth limiting your news intake.

You might want to consider downloading the Charlie app, that I spoke about on my blog in this post about how to consume the news in a healthier way. It’s already helped so many people establish a healthier relationship with their news intake habits!

Alcohol

Alcohol is a depressant. So you REALLY want to avoid it when you’re already feeling low or depressed. Which is difficult, for sure. But even cutting down will make a difference.

Alcohol slows down coordination and a person’s ability to react and concentrate. Although in small doses, it can help you feel relaxed in the moment, once the effects wear off, you’ll find your mood even lower.

Social media

We all need to learn how to use social media in a healthier way, whether we’re depressed or not. But I know from my own experience that social media can sky-rocket how I’m feeling and make me go from being in a mildly bad mood to full-blown depression fairly quickly.

There are so many reasons to avoid social media when you’re feeling low. It’s difficult if you’re a full-time blogger or you work online but there are always things you can do to help, like setting screen limits or muting certain phrases.

Lack of movement

I know that when we’re feeling so low, sometimes the LAST thing you want to do is get out of bed, let alone exercise. But you know the drill, it’s proven that exercise and movement can improve you mood – at least a little bit.

Finding activities you enjoy is the first crucial aspect of this point when you don’t want to exercise anyway. For me that’s swimming and yummy restorative Yoga practices.

Avoidance

We can wallow in our low moods for a time but eventually, we’re going to have to address what’s going on. Therapy can help, so can medication and speaking to your doctor.

We just simply can’t sweep how we’re feeling under the rug for too long. It’s a disservice to ourselves to not prioritize our self care and mental health.

Not eating the cake

And finally, not eating the cake. By this I simply mean not doing the little things that you love and that bring you small moments of joy. So forget about calories, if you want to eat that yummy cake then freaking EAT IT.

Of course it goes without saying that all of these points are only valid if you feeling mentally able to do them. Sometimes our mood is so low or we’re so depressed, that simply getting up, brushing our teeth and having breakfast is enough to take it out of us. So if you’re able to go a little more exercise or do something you enjoy, great! If not, please seek the help you need and deserve.

What would you recommend avoiding when you feel low or depressed? Do avoiding any of these things help you? Let me know!

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50 Comments

  1. I understand what is like to be super depressed. One of the few things that I try to do is giving myself a long walk until my head is a bit more clear or watch some good tv shows.

  2. Thanks for sharing, I have known myself to look at social media when not feeling well or write silly things that I think why did I do that after words, I think taking a break does help 🙂

  3. I totally agree with every single thing you’ve mentioned on todays post! When I’m feeling low I tend to stay away from news, that’s one TV programme in general that can really take the joy out of my day. I get it’s there to share information etc but sometimes it’s just to much so I defiantly avoid the news at all costs on down days! Also, social media. That has a huge part to play on my low days, so I like to put my phone away for a while when I’m feeling down. This is a really great post with some great tips lovely, thank you so much for sharing Xo

    Elle – ellegracedeveson.com

  4. These are some really good suggestions to avoid when you are feeling low. The news can bring down your mood and increase your anxiety on a good day, it is so horrible what is happening around the world and even in the UK. Thank you for sharing your suggestions

    Lauren x

  5. Lovely post, Jenny! I really noticed that lack of movement and excessive use of social media take a toll on my mental health, hence I try to limit my use of social media. “ Indulging in too many of the things on this list can definitely make your depression worse.” I also agree with this point, too. Thank you so much for sharing, I loved reading it! X Penny | http://www.whatdidshetype.com

  6. You’ve made some really great points here; it’s so easy to let things creep in that don’t help us when we’re feeling low. I will remember your tips as I definitely need to be more careful with protecting my energy during these times.

  7. The hardest one for me is avoiding movement! I always forget a nice walk or getting fresh air can really effect my mood. You’re right! Self-care is so important. And the extends beyond the spa or nail salon.

  8. I totally agree with the big decision! Every decision I take while not feeling good ends up going wrong!

  9. I always try to avoid the news when I’m feeling low or depressed too. I do like to keep myself moving when I’m feeling down, I don’t want to get to the stage of not wanting to do things because of my low mood, I like to keep going! But I know that won’t be the same for everyone! x

    Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk

  10. I honestly could not agree with you more about social media and the news when you are depressed, not having a good day and so on x

  11. Lovely post! I am coming out of a time when I felt pretty low. I found that limiting screentime and social media was helpful. I also made a list of things that bring me joy and focused on doing 1-2 of those things each day.

  12. These are all great pointers. I don’t think I’ve actually thought about managing relationships with toxic people, I’m usually a get rid type of gal. But you make very valid points. I like how you mentioned alcohol too! Without sounding like the fun police, I think it’s underestimated how dangerous it can be.

    Claire.x
    http://www.clairemac.co.uk

  13. Love this post! Avoiding social media is a must- and something I need to remember. Even when I’m not feeling low, an hour scrolling online can make me feel it! Thanks for sharing x

  14. I suffer from depression and I have been diagnosed with it. You are on the mark about the things to avoid. The one thing that I have found that truly does help me, is finding something that I enjoy and makes me feel like I am making a difference. This is not something just for the joy of it, but something that is a helpful, in my case, to others. I’m a people person and that’s hard to be with depression. I found writing to help others in various ways helps me control my own feelings. This is why I started blogging in the first place, for self help while helping others. In other words, find something you enjoy to do, but it must be useful at the same time. Otherwise, you will feel useless and that makes it worse. Thank you for your post.

  15. I love the last one 🙂

    Some of them are hard to remember and follow like lack of movements. While feeling down, I just want to curl up under blanket and eat cake. I know I shouldn’t but still.

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