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March 6, 2003

How to cope with depression

• Recognize that there may be certain times of the day when you feel better, and use that to your advantage.

• Break large tasks into smaller ones; set priorities and take things one at a time; avoid taking on too much responsibility and setting overly difficult goals.

• Activities such as exercise, attending sports or cultural events, and participating in a religious or social event can help you feel better.

• Avoid alcohol and non-prescribed drugs. Limit caffeine intake as well.

• Seek help immediately if you feel overwhelmed or hopeless.

• Love yourself! Set aside time each day just for you and do something good for yourself. Try to eat right, walk and try to connect with people you like to be around for emotional support. Do things you really enjoy.

—From “The Dana Guide to Brain Health,” edited by Floyd E. Bloom, M. Flint Beal and David J. Kupfer.

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