Make them feel useful
Subtly and regularly, bring in the talk about the great things that they do, their impact and their achievements. Bring back their self-worth that they are currently struggling with.
Make them feel loved
Talk about things that would remind them of how people love them and how others do things for them out of love and not out of pity.
Check on them regularly
Not just tell them you are there to listen to them when they want to talk, but keep calling them often just to check on them. Understand that they won’t call you and sometimes may even push you away.
Tell them no matter what I am with you
Anxiety makes you lose focus, you swirl away in negative thoughts about the future, way too fast. Try to bring them back to the now, let them know they are safe, let them know even if the worst happens we will fight it together.
Make them feel safe and understood. Do not hurry their healing
Tell them I understand this sadness, emptiness or anxiety will keep coming back. I am here when you need me.
Get them out of their head
Organize activities that they enjoy, the aim is to get them out of their head, without asking them to do so.
Get them dressed up and get them out
People in depression lose interest in themselves and hence stop taking care of themselves, this impacts their physical appearance, which in turn adds to their struggle with self-worth. Get them dressed in spite of their unwillingness, get them out to meet people whom they connect well with.
Motivate them at every step
A little encouragement at each step goes a long way for a person who is struggling to fight hidden demons of negativity inside them. Keep them away from any sort of negative talk, or discussion that could trigger anxiety or negativity in them.
Get them Exercising
Physical exercise will be the last thing they will want to do, but motivate them, because depression symptoms often improve with exercise. Besides the obvious exercising benefits, exercising also releases feel-good brain chemicals which ease depression.
Keep them Occupied
“Hell is empty and all the devils are here” – William Shakespeare
So it is of utmost importance to keep them engaged in an activity they enjoy. If they are spiritual minded get them reading or attending spiritual talks which can really help heal them. If they are artistic let them get connected with their art. Remember their soul will push them towards the activities that will help it heal, let them follow the direction.
Shower Physical affection
Depending on the type of relationship you have with them, use appropriate physical touch like hugging, caressing, cuddling, kissing, intercourse. Stimulating touch receptors under the skin can lower blood pressure and cortisol levels, effectively reducing stress. And it doesn’t matter if you’re the toucher or touchee. The more you connect with others — on even the smallest physical level — the happier you’ll be.
“Hug tight, hug often, cause love travels through hugs.” – Wordions
Get them to help others
Stephen G. Post, PhD, professor of preventive medicine at Stony Brook University, explains, “the caring connection system is related to the hormone oxytocin, often called the compassion hormone.” When we connect with other human beings and help them (make them happy) our body releases oxytocin which in turn helps people reduce their stress and makes them happy.