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Self-Care When You’re Depressed

Self-care is a unique challenge when you’re struggling through depression. The motivation isn’t there and the connection with self has been severed.

In this article, I’m going to share my personal tips for self-care when you’re depressed.

Self-care tips for those struggling with depression

Self-care when you’re depressed

Most people in general struggle when it comes to implementing self-care. In our day and age of phone scrolling and the constant need for stimulation, self-care tends to get put on our “to-do later” list.

But when a person is living with depression the motivation to do anything is majorly impacted, much less taking time for self-care.

The beautiful irony is that self-care is the very thing that would begin to heal the depression. Self-care is the lifeline that will begin to pull you back to your inner self.

I firmly believe that depression is the result of a disconnection from self. I don’t believe it’s a random illness that one just suffers from for no reason. Just like I don’t believe that ANY illness or condition is random.

All illnesses, mental or physical, are messages from our bodies and higher selves. There is a severance of self and the depression is the message to reconnect.

I have been diagnosed and treated for depression and bipolar disorder in the past. What I’ve come to find in my journey of deep, restorative self-care is that I was disconnected from myself, especially the parts that were hurting and needed healing.

Below are my own personal tips for self-care if you’re struggling through the depths of depression. My disclaimer is that I am not a doctor, therapist, or a psychologist.

My self-care advice isn’t treatment. I’m a self-care author who has experienced depression and am simply sharing what has helped me.

1. Surrender and give yourself grace

First of all, you need to let go of any guilt or pressure. That stuff doesn’t help when you’re already lacking motivation.

Honor where you are and how you’re feeling–don’t berate yourself. You’re in a valley right now and that’s not a bad thing. There is a lot of growth and learning that comes from being in contrast.

I always picture contrast to be like a slingshot and how far tightly it’s pulled back. When you’re experiencing strong contrast, such as empty or horrible feeling emotions, your slingshot is pulled waaaay far back.

When that slingshot is released, it’s going to take you so much further in a short amount of time than other people because in your contrast, you very strongly asked for the opposite with crystal clear clarity.

I frequently use the example of the time I hit financial rock bottom and turned my situation around in 3 months after learning about the law of attraction.

My contrast was so strong and painful that it gave me an extremely clear vision of what I did want.

Hitting rock bottom in any fashion can honestly be one of the most transformative and amazing experiences of your life. Contrast brings clarity, so don’t beat yourself up for swimming in it right now. Things can and will change.

Be easy about it and take it one day at a time. The contrast has a higher purpose.

2. Your main goal: reconnection with self

There are all kinds of self-care ranging from your shallow, standard advice (paint your nails and giggle with friends!) to deeply soul restoring.

You’re going for the soul restoring kind because that’s exactly what your soul is calling you to do through the depression.

The depression is the plea–the invitation from your higher self.

I look at it like a therapy session with my higher self. Show up and start small. Your soul isn’t asking for anything more.

I would suggest activities that have helped you to feel connected in the past. One thing that has worked really well for me has been to journal what I’m feeling and thinking to help sort through and release it.

Not only does journaling lighten all of the emotions I’m carrying, but it’s as if divine responses come to my mind when I’m writing. It’s actually a form of divination (receiving messages from a spiritual source) so writing truly is therapeutic.

A book I also highly recommend would be You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay and the workbook that comes with it.

I can’t even begin to describe the breakthrough I had with that book and workbook. It was actually the first book I read when I first began practicing my self-care routine. It helped me heal a very deep part within myself that I had been carrying since I was a little girl.

Self-care doesn’t need to be a big production–it’s actually better if it starts out small.

It’s like going on a date with someone new…you don’t know them well enough yet to know what you both enjoy doing most together. You find out a little bit more each time you hang out.

With self-care, you slowly build up getting to know yourself. You don’t know much of what you need or want at first, so it’s best to start with something small that you feel drawn towards.

Does a healing book or journaling draw any interest at all? Have you had success with it in the past? Is there something else that’s popping into your head? Do you feel connected in nature, or in using your hands to create something?

Ask yourself what you’d like to do, like you would a partner. A bookstore date? A walk through the park? A long drive? A phone call?

Don’t feel like it has to be forced or perfect. Just take a small step forward towards self-care. Your soul won’t leave you hanging, I can promise you that.

Keep showing up and the healing will begin.

3. Try guided meditations

The thing that I love about guided meditations is that they’re perfect for beginners and anyone with a hyper active mind. They’re also an excellent, perhaps the best way, to begin connecting with your higher self.

They quiet your mind, realign your focus and lift you out of yourself for a brief moment, which is long enough to begin to shift your vibration and reality.

I also love that there are free guided meditations for almost anything. If there’s a specific part of yourself or your body that you want to heal, just search for it on YouTube or any other meditation app. I’m currently liking the Omvana app.

On YouTube I simply create a list of my favorite meditations and listen to one before I fall asleep. Very often I fall asleep before it’s over but again, I don’t beat myself up over it. I just let it be.

You can read my post here for my favorite guided meditations.

4. Get very picky

I want you to get very protective of yourself. Like the stereotypical father with a shotgun protecting his teenage daughter from anything and anyone beneath her.

But instead, you’re protecting your energy and vibration.

In re-establishing the connection with yourself, you really don’t have the time or luxury to be surrounded by negative energy. That means you need to clean up your social media feeds, turn the drama off your tv, and distance yourself from people that bring you down.

Those people on Facebook who constantly share angry political articles or dramatic updates….UNFOLLOW. They won’t even know because you haven’t unfriended them, but you won’t see their rants in your feed anymore.

The news stations on TV that like to highlight everything going wrong in the world instead of all the doors that were held today for others, for all the smiles given to strangers, for all the cars who let each other in on the roads, for all the coffees paid for by the cars at the front of the lines…TURN THEM OFF.

Those people in your real life who love to complain, who like to make themselves or you a victim…WALK AWAY.

Anything that makes you feel bad needs to get the boot. That includes your own negative self-talk or ranting, online or to other people. QUIT IT.

Your energy right now is the most important thing and you should treat it like a little tiny seedling that needs lots of sunshine, water and care.

Protecting my energy has powerfully shifted my life. I can barely even tell you who the president is and I’m not sorry about it.

Damn right I’m living over here in my bubble. My emotional well-being comes before anything else. I protect it more fiercely than the dad with the shotgun.

I can’t help anyone without my own oxygen mask on first.

5. Slow gratitude

Another practice that has powerfully shifted my life and brought me out of my depression and anxiety has been gratitude.

Gratitude used to really anger me because I didn’t understand it. I didn’t want to be grateful for what little I perceived that I had. I didn’t want to be told to be grateful for the shitty situation that was my life.

But the truth is that gratitude energetically shifts your reality and begins taking you in a new direction.

Not in a hokey way. Not in a self-sacrificing way. In a scientifically proven way.

You have a lot to gain by allowing the feeling of gratitude to flow through your body. It’s not settling–it’s opening the door and inviting beautiful things to come into your life.

It also pulls you out of your thoughts and gives you a bird’s eye perspective. It shifts relationships, finances, and happiness.

I call it slow gratitude because like with everything else, start slow and small.

You can even be grateful for things like “Brenda left me alone today at work.” As long as it brings you a feeling of gratitude, that’s all that matters.

You cannot be at the bottom of a hole and feel like the person who is standing at the top, which is why you start small and begin slowing climbing out.

Gratitude is a fast track that will begin quickly lifting you out of the hole. There’s a mysterious power behind gratitude that literally transforms your reality into something you could’ve never imagined.

Think of 10 things you’re grateful for every night before falling asleep. Try it and see what happens.

Tell a new story

I love listening to Abraham Hicks on YouTube, almost on a daily basis, and one of the things they always talk about is telling a new story.

What you speak out of your mouth becomes your reality. This means you need to stop claiming the depression as if it’s yours. If you do, it will continue to be yours no matter what you do.

“But I am depressed, that’s the truth,” you say. Every moment is a new beginning, so to that I say “You were depressed, but this is a new moment.”

Begin saying things like:

  • I am healing
  • I am getting better every day
  • I am discovering who I am
  • I am reconnecting with myself
  • I am letting this be easy
  • I am going through a transformation
  • I am stepping into the next version of me
  • My contrast is bringing me closer to myself
  • My contrast is better defining what I want
  • My contrast is not in vain
  • My contrast holds purpose
  • My contrast is an invitation for growth
  • My mind is healing itself
  • My body is healing itself
  • My natural state is love

The more you speak truths like this rather than “I suffer from depression”, “I’m depressed”, “I have a mental illness”, “I have a chemical imbalance”, the quicker your experience will begin to shift for the better.

As Abraham says, don’t speak for your limitations. Speak for your wellbeing.

Again, this isn’t hokey stuff made up to put a big bandaid over a wound. It’s scientifically proven that what we tell ourselves has a physical effect on our bodies, which translates into our realities.

The more you tell yourself there’s something wrong with you, the more that truth must persist. So just start being more aware of the way you’re speaking to yourself and others.

Stop claiming what you don’t want and start shifting towards what you do want.


Depression can be a gift if you choose for it to be so. It’s a divine cue that you are in need of reconnection. It’s nothing to be ashamed of–think of all the illnesses there are in the world and that they are ALL divine calls to heal the self.

Even the standard cold and flu is a divine cue that someone needs to slow down and reconnect.

It holds a purpose and you should honor that. Honestly, be grateful that depression has shown up in your life. Add it to your gratitude list. Beautiful revelations and growth come from the darkness.

I hope you found this post helpful. I want you to know you aren’t alone. You’re here, reading this post I wrote for a reason. I’m leaving love right here for you in this space. And I know I’ll see you at the top of the mountain again soon.

Lots of love,

Jessica

Other articles I’ve written that you may find helpful:


Jessica Dimas is a self-care author and content creator. Connect with her on Facebook and Instagram for more inspiration. 

Dwell in Magic Shop - Self-Care worksheets, Law of attraction worksheets, moon ritual worksheets #selfcaretips #manifesting #worksheets #moonritual

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Jessica Dimas

I'm Jessica, the creator and author behind Dwell in Magic. My passion is sharing my love for the power of sacred self-care and the art of manifestation. When the two are combined, life is ABSOLUTELY magical.

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Comments

  1. You’re amazing! Thank you so much for writing and sharing this. It’s so helpful and I’m grateful to have read it. Thank you 💗

  2. Today I revisited this post because I am in desperate need of protecting my energy. I used it as an affirmation today. I will protect my energy and walk away emotionally from anything negative. Thanks for the guidance.

  3. This article resonated with me in the deepest way. I just got out of an inpatient facility where I faced my depression and anxiety head-on for the first time in my life (I will be 40 next month). Depression as disconnection from self = Amen, girl! The most accurate description of my depression EVER. I bookmarked it on the home screen of my phone to read when I need encouragement to get through the day. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

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reader love

I have binge read so many of your posts in the last few days! I've been trying so hard to heal my soul, and I feel like you're introducing me to the tools and techniques to finally do that! Thank you so much!

Melanie D.

2019-03-28T15:54:56-04:00

Melanie D.

I have binge read so many of your posts in the last few days! I've been trying so hard to heal my soul, and I feel like you're introducing me to the tools and techniques to finally do that! Thank you so much!

Hi Jessica. Hope you are well. I have just got your manifesting magic with the moon worksheet and I LOVE IT,THANK YOU.

N.F.

2019-03-29T17:03:23-04:00

N.F.

Hi Jessica. Hope you are well. I have just got your manifesting magic with the moon worksheet and I LOVE IT,THANK YOU.

I have a dedicated album for sacred self-care & I'm posting a bunch of your blog posts and links in them because you are my absolute favourite!! I found you a couple of years ago and started with your "anything can be" bundle and I've been following you ever since and love your stuff ❤Thank you for what you do and for sharing your knowledge with the world!!!

Sandra

2019-03-29T17:05:31-04:00

Sandra

I have a dedicated album for sacred self-care & I'm posting a bunch of your blog posts and links in them because you are my absolute favourite!! I found you a couple of years ago and started with your "anything can be" bundle and I've been following you ever since and love your stuff Thank you for what you do and for sharing your knowledge with the world!!!

Wow, is all I can say. Your blog made me realize that I am 100% an empath. It explains SO MUCH. I am in shock. I've been researching it for four hours now, and I'm just blown away with the answers and validation that I am experiencing. Everything is all making sense now thanks to you. THANK YOU.

C.E.

2019-03-29T17:08:33-04:00

C.E.

Wow, is all I can say. Your blog made me realize that I am 100% an empath. It explains SO MUCH. I am in shock. I've been researching it for four hours now, and I'm just blown away with the answers and validation that I am experiencing. Everything is all making sense now thanks to you. THANK YOU.

Hi Jessica, I have recently discovered your work and I love every word you write. I purchased the Self Care for moms and I am working towards setting up this sacred space and time in between the chaotic time I have currently being a full time working mother and also expecting my second baby in May.

Jisha

2019-03-29T17:12:20-04:00

Jisha

Hi Jessica, I have recently discovered your work and I love every word you write. I purchased the Self Care for moms and I am working towards setting up this sacred space and time in between the chaotic time I have currently being a full time working mother and also expecting my second baby in May.

Thank you so very much for the gorgeous moon calendar!  A lot of time and love went into it–hugely appreciated!

Tracy

2019-03-29T17:13:30-04:00

Tracy

Thank you so very much for the gorgeous moon calendar!  A lot of time and love went into it–hugely appreciated!

Thank you!!!!!!! Just discovering your blog and loving it so much! I marveled at how full the moon looked last night and I am so happy you sent this reminder to act on it.

Cat

2019-03-29T17:14:26-04:00

Cat

Thank you!!!!!!! Just discovering your blog and loving it so much! I marveled at how full the moon looked last night and I am so happy you sent this reminder to act on it.

Oh my gosh. I love you. Thank you for making everything so succinct. You have such a user friendly approach to all of this.

Rhyne

2019-03-29T17:15:10-04:00

Rhyne

Oh my gosh. I love you. Thank you for making everything so succinct. You have such a user friendly approach to all of this.

I just downloaded your 7 day bootcamp. I cannot wait to start it tomorrow! Thank you for making it!!!

Julie

2019-03-29T17:16:43-04:00

Julie

I just downloaded your 7 day bootcamp. I cannot wait to start it tomorrow! Thank you for making it!!!

Hi Jessica! Just wanted to write & say thank you for your 7 Day Bootcamp! I just love it and have implemented morning and evening self-care routines and maintained them for a few weeks. I also have Sacred Self-Care which I can't wait to dive into. Thank you for your blog and courses, they are just wonderful.

Monique

2019-03-29T17:17:39-04:00

Monique

Hi Jessica! Just wanted to write & say thank you for your 7 Day Bootcamp! I just love it and have implemented morning and evening self-care routines and maintained them for a few weeks. I also have Sacred Self-Care which I can't wait to dive into. Thank you for your blog and courses, they are just wonderful.

I'm a new blogger and found your blog planner a couple weeks back. I instantly fell in love with it, it was everything I was looking for and more. I have a horrible habit of buying planners and never using them, until I bought this one. I always have it next to me when I blog and I'm constantly pulling it out to add things to it.

Christina

2019-03-29T17:19:42-04:00

Christina

I'm a new blogger and found your blog planner a couple weeks back. I instantly fell in love with it, it was everything I was looking for and more. I have a horrible habit of buying planners and never using them, until I bought this one. I always have it next to me when I blog and I'm constantly pulling it out to add things to it.

If you don't have Jessica's Manifesting Magic with the Moon worksheets, I highly recommend you invest in them! They help me so much and are easy to follow!!

Kristy L.

2019-03-29T17:22:38-04:00

Kristy L.

If you don't have Jessica's Manifesting Magic with the Moon worksheets, I highly recommend you invest in them! They help me so much and are easy to follow!!

Jessica, you're the first person that really inspired me to take care of myself. In 2016 I really wanted to do daily practices, but I never did it. Reading your words made me give it a try. Thank you so, so much for all of this.

Amanda

2019-03-29T17:23:34-04:00

Amanda

Jessica, you're the first person that really inspired me to take care of myself. In 2016 I really wanted to do daily practices, but I never did it. Reading your words made me give it a try. Thank you so, so much for all of this.

Jessica, I can't even begin to tell you how your book & exercises have been changing my life! Can't thank you enough!! it's been so eye opening for both my husband and I.

Melissa S.

2019-03-29T17:24:24-04:00

Melissa S.

Jessica, I can't even begin to tell you how your book & exercises have been changing my life! Can't thank you enough!! it's been so eye opening for both my husband and I.

Hi Jessica, I've been following you for ages on Instagram and have more recently been finding your group so useful.. so thank you.

Louise

2019-03-29T17:01:17-04:00

Louise

Hi Jessica, I've been following you for ages on Instagram and have more recently been finding your group so useful.. so thank you.

I have purchased both the Anything Can Be bundle and the 7 Day Mini Manifesting Boot Camp. Both are so helpful in prompting me to write out my thoughts and to focus. The worksheets are beautiful, and they have become a calming ritual. I bookend my days with candles glowing and pen in hand.

Sandy

2019-03-29T16:59:19-04:00

Sandy

I have purchased both the Anything Can Be bundle and the 7 Day Mini Manifesting Boot Camp. Both are so helpful in prompting me to write out my thoughts and to focus. The worksheets are beautiful, and they have become a calming ritual. I bookend my days with candles glowing and pen in hand.

Hey Jessica! I have been following you for some time now. Your work is inspiring and resonates with me so much! Your posts on self care have influenced a lot of what I do now and helped me really get into intentional self care. I believe what you offer is so needed in today's world.

Odessa

2019-03-29T16:58:31-04:00

Odessa

Hey Jessica! I have been following you for some time now. Your work is inspiring and resonates with me so much! Your posts on self care have influenced a lot of what I do now and helped me really get into intentional self care. I believe what you offer is so needed in today's world.

Without Jessica's worksheets and the whole bundle that is, I would be so lost, unorganized & frustrated. She has created such an awesome platform for even the newbie like me just getting started. Thank you Jessica!

E.M.

2019-03-29T16:33:49-04:00

E.M.

Without Jessica's worksheets and the whole bundle that is, I would be so lost, unorganized & frustrated. She has created such an awesome platform for even the newbie like me just getting started. Thank you Jessica!

Ahhhh LOVE this! You're so inspiring. I just ordered your Moon Manifesting workbook last night and I'm really loving it from what I've seen, planning to dive in with the full moon worksheets Friday and moving forward! Super appreciate the amazing art and wisdom that you contribute! Keep rocking it, beautiful!!

Stephanie

2019-03-29T16:36:49-04:00

Stephanie

Ahhhh LOVE this! You're so inspiring. I just ordered your Moon Manifesting workbook last night and I'm really loving it from what I've seen, planning to dive in with the full moon worksheets Friday and moving forward! Super appreciate the amazing art and wisdom that you contribute! Keep rocking it, beautiful!!

Your email today literally changed my life. Thanks for contributing such magical elements into my life.

Rosie

2019-03-29T16:38:13-04:00

Rosie

Your email today literally changed my life. Thanks for contributing such magical elements into my life.

Just bought the Manifesting with the Moon worksheet bundle! I've felt drawn to it for while now. Just in time for tomorrow's full moon!! Thank you <3

S.E.

2019-03-29T16:39:05-04:00

S.E.

Just bought the Manifesting with the Moon worksheet bundle! I've felt drawn to it for while now. Just in time for tomorrow's full moon!! Thank you <3

Omg the moon worksheets are my fav!!! A friend asked if it was a course and I was like it's a self-taught course but the pages are self-guided and I love it!!

Frances

2019-03-29T16:40:26-04:00

Frances

Omg the moon worksheets are my fav!!! A friend asked if it was a course and I was like it's a self-taught course but the pages are self-guided and I love it!!

Hi love! I just wanted to say THANK YOU for your beautiful moon worksheets! I purchased it over the weekend and I am so excited to get into it!!

Laura E.

2019-03-29T16:41:06-04:00

Laura E.

Hi love! I just wanted to say THANK YOU for your beautiful moon worksheets! I purchased it over the weekend and I am so excited to get into it!!

Hey Jess :) been doing your worksheets and loving them!

Kelly J.

2019-03-29T16:41:51-04:00

Kelly J.

Hey Jess :) been doing your worksheets and loving them!

Hi, just wanted to tell you your blog is wonderful and in a span of 10 minutes gave me answers to two questions I had. Truly magical.

Christina

2019-03-29T16:42:37-04:00

Christina

Hi, just wanted to tell you your blog is wonderful and in a span of 10 minutes gave me answers to two questions I had. Truly magical.

Hi! I'm a hugggge fan, you are such an inspiration and a huge motivator! Thanks for being such an amazing person in today's world.

Dakota

2019-03-29T16:44:11-04:00

Dakota

Hi! I'm a hugggge fan, you are such an inspiration and a huge motivator! Thanks for being such an amazing person in today's world.

Seriously your words are thoughts my mind craves!! Thank you for sharing your beautiful knowledge! Please know you're helping change my life for the better with your posts!!!

S.F.

2019-03-29T16:45:05-04:00

S.F.

Seriously your words are thoughts my mind craves!! Thank you for sharing your beautiful knowledge! Please know you're helping change my life for the better with your posts!!!

Hi Jessica! I wanted to thank you for being so amazing. I have been struggling with panic and anxiety now for some time and have been trying to self heal with some of the strategies you use. I'm 10 days without a panic attack, I'm slowly getting there.

Kellie M.

2019-03-29T16:46:43-04:00

Kellie M.

Hi Jessica! I wanted to thank you for being so amazing. I have been struggling with panic and anxiety now for some time and have been trying to self heal with some of the strategies you use. I'm 10 days without a panic attack, I'm slowly getting there.

Hello Jessica. I just wanted to let you know that your seven day mini manifesting boot camp has helped me a lot and I am only on day two!

Jen

2019-03-29T16:52:03-04:00

Jen

Hello Jessica. I just wanted to let you know that your seven day mini manifesting boot camp has helped me a lot and I am only on day two!

Thank u thank u thank u so much for being so caring and considerate I would have slept with a heavy heart today had I not received your reply. I love reading your articles cause they are easy flowing, not too hard on the brain. Life seems so simple and so amazingly beautiful in your articles. Keep inspiring 👍

Anjum

2019-03-29T16:54:52-04:00

Anjum

Thank u thank u thank u so much for being so caring and considerate I would have slept with a heavy heart today had I not received your reply. I love reading your articles cause they are easy flowing, not too hard on the brain. Life seems so simple and so amazingly beautiful in your articles. Keep inspiring 

Hi! I first found you on Pinterest and from there started following your Instagram page. I truly appreciate your work that focuses on well-being of self & others. Also it gives peace and positive vibes. Keep shining and spreading the magic!

Suchi

2019-03-30T14:16:12-04:00

Suchi

Hi! I first found you on Pinterest and from there started following your Instagram page. I truly appreciate your work that focuses on well-being of self & others. Also it gives peace and positive vibes. Keep shining and spreading the magic!