Sadness is an understandable human emotion that often arises in response to upsetting, painful or disappointing events.
But sadness can also develop into depression, a more persistent mood disorder.
The good news is that there are healthy ways to cope with sad moments without making yourself feel worse.
1. Take a break.
Breaking away for a vacation, taking yoga classes, or doing something else you enjoy can be beneficial in dealing with difficult moments. It gives your brain time to reset and recover after such an interruption.
You can take a break to determine what you want out of a relationship. Maybe you aren’t sure if you’re ready for more commitment or if your current partner is the right one for you at this stage in life. A break can also give yourself space to think through what type of connection would best suit you both at this moment in your lives.
Ford emphasizes that when couples decide to end their relationship, it should be done so mutually and discussed face-to-face. It should also be established how much time will be spent apart and what each party expects of each other during this period of transition.
2. Write it out.
Writing is an excellent way to express yourself and communicate with others.
Writing down your feelings regarding an event or incident can be a beneficial step towards understanding what may be causing you to feel sad and helping you take steps in the right direction.
Writing can be an enjoyable and informative process. No matter if you choose to pen a letter, blog post, or short story, practice makes perfect. The trick is keeping those words flowing through your mind and onto paper until they turn into work that makes you proud to display on your shelf.
3. Listen to music.
When you’re feeling down, music can help lift your spirits. Songs that address painful themes like loss, broken relationships and other situations where it seems like you don’t have control of your life may provide comfort.
Recent studies have even revealed that people diagnosed with depression preferred listening to sad music over happy music.
Listening to sad music can help people who are experiencing sadness release some of the negative emotions attached to that emotion. Additionally, it may inspire them to have greater hopefulness.
4. Do something you enjoy.
Feeling sad can be a part of life, but if you find yourself often down or crying without cause, speaking to a mental health professional may be beneficial. This could be indicative of something more serious such as depression or trauma.
In the meantime, try to find ways to make yourself happier. Doing something you enjoy doing – like spending time with friends, going to a movie or shopping for new clothes – can lift your mood and help you get through any sadness you may be feeling.
5. Talk to someone.
One of the best ways to cope with sad moments is talking with someone. Whether it’s your family, friends or a counselor, sharing your emotions can make you feel less alone and more optimistic.
In many cases, sadness is an unremarkable emotion that passes with time. But sometimes sadness may be indicative of a deeper issue, like depression.
If you believe your friend may be struggling with depression, let them know it’s okay to talk about their emotions. Additionally, remind them that sadness is an entirely normal emotion and one which can be overcome.