How to overcome depression (according to Johndy Lens Philistin)

a depressed girl

Look around you. It’s so easy to get depressed or sad in this modern world. There’s sadness in your instagram reels, your YouTube shorts or Tiktok videos. There’s a bunch of available songs to listen to when you are sad in order to strengthen your sadness. While this article will mostly cover depression, it’s also important to talk about sadness because depression often lead to sadness (not to say always).

At the beginning of my 10th grade, depression consumed me. I wondered the meaning of my existence and where I was going. I was trying to fit in some groups to not feel lonely at school. The few students who reached me out only needed some mathematics or physics explanation (not all). Even at home, my mother used to compare me with other people’s kids who are taking leadership role in the church. I thought I was good only at school and basketball. I didn’t have a purpose in life and I felt like everyone is just using me.

I will not minimize the effort you will need to overcome depression but when I healed, I realized the very true reason why I was depressed : I expected too much from people and I always wanted people validation. However, my lack of confidence also played an essential role in it. All the advice I will give to overcome depression consist mainly about one thing : Change your mindset. Easier to say than doing but it’s all about your perspectives. Thus, this a step by step process. Try to :

  • Expect less from people

    One day, a friend of mine told me : « The higher your expectation, the higher your disappointment ». This hit me and he was absolutely right. Some people are depressed because they don’t feel back the same energy or feeling they give to other. Keep in mind that : « Noone owns you ». The fact you give your help to someone doesn’t require them to do the same for you and you have to accept that.

    Once, I saw a girl upset of the fact that she was sick and nobody took her news while she is always present when a friend of her is ill. I do understand her but I will repeat that the fact that she’s always present for them doesn’t require them to be present for her.

    Furthermore, Most of the depressed people are the sensitive ones. Their feelings can be hurt so much and easily. I remember one day that I saw a young woman struggling to lift her luggage. Without even asking, I stop what I was doing and I lift her luggage to where she wanted. Then, I didn’t even get a « Thank you » from her. Do you think that disturbed me ? Absolutely not. Some people would be upset for the rest of their day If they encountered this situation.

    In fact, when you are doing something for a person, do it by your heart and don’t expect it back. For this reason, you are free to accept or decline a request for a hand. You own them nothing either. When you give a help, ask yourself if you are very willing to do it and expect nothing back. If the answer is yes, go for it. Otherwise, decline respectfully.

    That would saved me a lot of time if I applied this earlier. Why do I expect people help me back when I explained maths ? Do they own me that ?

  • Don’t look for friends, be a good friend

    When it comes to depression, our circle matters. Some of us feel very rejected from their group. It’s not easy to drop them because they are the only ones you have. Hence, I invit you in a journey of improving yourself, then, people will come to you naturally and you will no longer beg for friendship.

    Trying to fit in can be very toxic for your mental health. Add values to yourself and never go back to the toxic friends. There are people out of there who will see your values.

  • Set an ambitious goal

    This is kind of a continuing of the previous step-bettering yourself. It’s also the most important one, the one that healed me step by step.

    Just living isn’t enough. You must set an ambitious goal that is outside of your current capacity to achieve it. It must almost seem impossible for you to reach it. Afterwards, work on yourself everyday day, better yourself everyday, level up everyday so that you keep making progress towards your goal. "The only impossible journey is the one you never begin." — Tony Robbins.

    Do not do that for showing off or telling your friend that you get a plan that you are working on. Usually, people are dream killer. So, this is a journey that you have to take alone : no friends, no family, and no distraction ; only you, your beliefs, and your goal. Keep the plan for you and work on it every single day. In addition, you have to become obsessed with this goal and forget the notion of time in order to reach it.

    For my case, I am still working on my plan and I still have effort to do to reach the level that I set up. However, I improved so much. Now, only this goal matters to me and I don’t feel the need to be validated by people anymore. Also, having friend has become easier for me because my improvements increased my confidence level and people feel better around me. While you’re working on this goal, you won’t realize how other aspect on your life might upgrade. I may not be impressive right now but I am working on something.

    Also, don’t blame yourself if you don’t see immediate result. Remember it’s a step by step process. A 1% (or less) better everyday. You might not notice the changes but there will be changes.

  • Go to the gym (optional)

    Some friends think that I am going to the gym to be muscular or to impress girls. Nevertheless, it’s just for my mental health. I am not a doctor, so I can’t provide explanation of what exercising actually releases in my body. The most important thing is that I love it and it makes me feel strong. I would even want to say it’s like a legal drug (no, I’ve never taken drugs lol).

    In fact, going to the gym will make you accustomed with pain and life it’s all about pain. Moreover, it will make you feel stronger and at the end, you will love your body, so much. This will boost your level of confidence.

  • Recognize that you ain’t special

    Don’t get me wrong. By stating that, I am not implying that you have no value like you might think. I want you to recognize that everyone has problems and they will not forget theirs for you. So, you ain’t special. Work on your problems and don’t expect anyone to have pity for you. They are already busy with their own ones.

  • When you heal, do not have rage against who put in depression

    No explanation needed. Do not go back to them and don’t hate them either.

As usual, I want to remind that these advices are based on my personal experiences (so it’s not scientifically proven that it will work for you). If I had to pick out only one of the previous advice, I would pick the set an ambitious goal one because it’s the one that changed my life. I work so hard on my goal that I even don’t have time to be sad anymore. While it’s not among the advices, you shouldn’t have negative people in your surroundings and listen to sad song either. Listening to sad songs will just strengthen your sadness. Finally, I recommend you to start right now. Later can be too late. Get out there and get a plan.