Many of my teenage and adult clients experience depression. For some it's seasonal or situational. For others it's a lifelong battle with a mental illness that does not ever go away completely, even with proper medication and regular therapy. All of them work hard at managing their mood. Through counseling we find the coping skills that work best for them. One of those coping skills is choosing and deciding to act. Depression tells us not to do anything or to do unhealthy things. We have to make a different decision; we have to choose something healthy. Sometimes this is a choice as basic as getting out of bed. Choosing to set an alarm and actually get up when it goes off. Other times it may be making a decision to go to that social outing you were invited to but are feeling like avoiding. Perhaps it's setting a few small manageable daily goals and deciding to complete them even while feeling low. Something positive happens when we choose a healthy action rather than feeding the depression by doing nothing or doing something unhealthy. We have taken a bit of the steam away from the depression and realized we have some control over ourselves. It can be quite empowering. If we repeat this positive choosing-to-act sequence over and over a few times a day, we find we are actually managing the depression versus living enslaved to it's deceit. If you struggle with depression or frequently have a depressed mood, try this seemingly basic coping skill. It can be much harder than it sounds but with focused intention and persistence, you'll find the positive impacts it can have as well. If you do not, counseling can be a helpful tool for you if you choose.