I don't have chronic all consuming depression, and haven't in several years. But I do have weeks sometimes, when I feel myself slipping back in the hole. This is how I get out.
  1. I don't feel guilty
    I do not feel bad for feeling bad.
  2. I sleep as much as I need to
  3. I don't make myself go out if I don't want
    If I don't feel like facing life, I'll give myself a break for a day. Just one day. I know more than that leads down an unhealthy path.
  4. I watch my favorite movies, reread a favorite book and listen to my favorite music
    Even if it's not enjoyable right at that moment, it's a reminder that there are things that I normally love. A reminder I'm capable of enjoying things and that I will again.
  5. I make myself reach out to a friend
    My depression usually tells me, I have no friends and that no one loves me. This is a way to show myself how my depression lies.
  6. I make myself exercise
    Even if it's just a short walk.
  7. Hang out with my kids
    And let them dictate what we do.
  8. I tell myself over and over and over and over that depression lies and it won't be like this forever
    And repeat until it comes true again.