There is no doubt the stress and isolation of 2020 have affected thousands of people. Many experts believe we are entering a mental health epidemic as Americans battle symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Back in July, we were only just realizing the pressures many were facing. Months later, the statistics don’t seem to be improving. More and more people experience depression.

It’s my conversation months ago, with Ann Golding, which we recorded in early 2020, that keeps coming back to me. What can we do when we begin to see the signs of depression? How can we help our friends who walk through this storm?

What are practical ways we can walk through depression?

  1. Sometimes medication is recommended. Ann points out that medicine does not make you happy, but it helps make you able to be happy.
  2. Once you start meeting with a therapist, and/or taking medication, don’t expect a change overnight. It will take time to recover from depression.
  3. Find someone with whom you can process through life. At the end of the day, it is important to have a friend to talk to in order to unload your day and share your heart.

Ann shares her tips for being an active listener, which include: maintaining eye contact, facing the person talking, listening without judgment and criticism, and asking clarifying questions.

If you are in a place and are unsure if you can climb out, please know that there is hope for a joyful life while living with depression!

Ann reminds us that “it takes way more courage to seek help for depression than it does to act like nothing is wrong.” This is a call for courage and bravery.

Listen to Episode 4 of The Bearing Life Podcast with Ann Golding to hear the rest of our conversation!