One thing that's helped me is intentionally finding little ways to increase my creature comforts-- those inconsequential snippets of joy. Even if my job is running me into the ground or my family members are causing me a lot of stress, here are things I can control and which bring me joy:
- Setting small goals for myself (and keeping them!). Some of my daily goals are: reading something that's good for me for 30 mins, exercising for at least 15 minutes, doing meditation for 15 minutes, etc. These are all small things, but at the end of the day I'm able to look back and say that I spent over an hour doing things that are good for me. It brings me joy.
- Taking time to make good, nutritious food and then taking time to enjoy it. You have a whole entire world of cooking available to you, and the satisfaction of suprising yourself by nailing a new recipe or finding ways to use up what we have in the fridge brings me a lot of joy.
- Using your time intentionally. This goes back to goal-setting, but I've found that when I plan out my days and follow through on what I say I'm going to do, I feel joy. The great thing is that you can plan your days however you want. The important bit is to be intentional about it. I've had days that included "play Call of Duty for 3 hours" or "take a long bath while listening to music." It doesn't matter how you fill your day (to an extent) but it matters that you're mindful of where your time is going. Using your time intentionally brings joy and helps you feel like you didn't waste your days away.
- Taking an inventory of yourself. What's sucking the joy away from your life? Find out what's keeping you from enjoying your life more, and learn how to change it. If your job sucks, find out what skills you need to make a career move. If your family sucks, make some hard boundaries to protect yourself from their negativity. If your friends suck, find a hobby that will introduce you to people more on your wavelength.
You can start by taking a free depression screening online, and then finding someone to talk to about it. Confide in your doctor, a family member/friend that you trust, or a member of your church if you go to one. If you do have depression, there's treatment options available.
All the way from simple talk therapy to ketamine infusions and more. Sometimes it takes a while to find what works best for you, but it's important to keep trying until you find what works best for you.
Don't give up. You have a lot of life left to live (and give!). Take care <3