According to some experts, depression is caused by a lack of pleasant activities. What are pleasant activities? Pleasant activities are simply things you like to do.
The basic idea is that when people are not depressed, their lives are made up of a wide variety of activities, some pleasant and positive, some unpleasant and negative, and some neutral. According to the theory, in order to feel better you need to have at least some positive activities in your life. Also, people stay depressed because they have at least the usual share of unpleasant activities but not enough pleasant activities. One of the solutions to overcoming depression is to try to schedule more positive and pleasant events in your life; this will help to get the balance between pleasant and unpleasant activities closer to what it is for people who aren’t depressed.
One of your most important jobs in this program is to take the risk of actually testing some of your predictions about what will happen if you try to do something pleasant. Because any experiment can go wrong, we’ll want you to repeat some experiments to see what happens each time. You don’t have to believe that you’ll enjoy the activity; you just have to be willing to try and see what happens. Think of yourself as a scientist who is performing experiments on your moods.
If you’re having some trouble coming up with some activities, here’s a list of some simple activities to get you started:
Going for a walk
Getting dressed up
Meeting someone new
Going to a concert
Having coffee with a friend
Going shopping for myself
Going to the beach
Reading sacred books
Going to see a sports event
What pleasant activities do you enjoy?