You’re in a good place at the moment, right? Work is great, home is great, your health couldn’t be better. You’re a lucky man. The epitome of success! But nothing comes without consequence, and one of the consequences of success is the pressure to stay successful.
Depression is common in people who are unable to deal with pressure, and it can have deadly consequences. Self-harm, or harm to others, is an all-too-familiar by-product of depression. Tragically, men are three times more likely than women to commit suicide, and suicide is one of the leading causes of death among males aged 15-44.
If you are having trouble sleeping, feel irritable or restless, are unable to concentrate, have problems with your sex life, or notice an unusual weight gain or loss, it may be tracked to depression. Watch out for these signs in people you’re close to as well. While men are just as prone to depression as women, they are far less likely to ask for help, which is one reason it's such a serious men’s health issue.
When you’re in good health, you are far better equipped to look after others. So don’t neglect the signs in your own life that things might not be going so well for you. This is especially pertinent when it comes to coping with depression. Even if you’re okay, reach out to your family member, your neighbour, or your colleague. He may need your support but be afraid to ask for it.
While professional help is always recommended, there are other things you can do to help stay on top of the bad feelings. Exercise releases endorphins which are proven to make you feel good. Celebrate achievements. Eat healthily and reduce or avoid alcohol. Alcohol is a depressant, so in the long-term, it won’t help your depression. Mental fitness is also a great way to stave off depression. Do puzzles, play problem-solving games, read or even write a challenging book or article. Treat yourself - a relaxing evening in, some alone time, or even a men’s grooming session or self-care regime.
Measure success by how you see yourself, not how you think others see you. Remember, those very same people you think are judging you could well have problems of their own and might need a friendly face or shoulder. And helping others is a great way to make yourself feel better.
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