5 Ways to Break the Depression and Anxiety Cycle

February 13, 2023 Martha Lueck

The anxiety and depression cycle makes it difficult to start and complete urgent tasks. Having struggled with both conditions for years, I have learned coping methods to stay productive and accomplish my goals. To learn about my strategies for beating the cycle of depression and anxiety, continue reading this post.

Anxiety and Depression Cycle Because They're Linked

Before I discuss my strategies, it is important to understand the link between anxiety and depression. Everyone experiences a different combination of symptoms of both conditions. Depression tells me that I am an inadequate employee. So there's no point in working. Then anxiety tells me that I need to do everything perfectly right away. It says that if I do not accomplish my tasks quickly and correctly, I will get in trouble or lose my job. When I feel anxious, I think there's something wrong with me. Then my depression intensifies. The cycle repeats itself.

This struggle used to stop me from doing a lot of things. I still experience the anxiety and depression cycle, but it has become much more manageable. I have used the following coping strategies to break the cycle between anxiety and depression long enough for me to complete important tasks.

5 Strategies to Break the Anxiety and Depression Cycle

  1. I identify my triggers before they happen. Usually, there are specific situations when that I know will trigger depression or anxiety. For instance, on the weekends when I work, I worry that I will not be able to handle the stress during busy hours. The anxiety makes it hard for me to get out of bed before my shifts. So while I am still in bed, I remind myself that I am a kind person and a hard worker. No matter what happens, I will be okay.
  2. I remember that my thoughts are not always reality. Sometimes my thoughts are irrational. At these times, I remind myself that my thoughts do not define reality. When I assume that I will have a bad day, I remind myself that my day might not be that bad. It might be a very good day. This positive self-talk and thought reformation make it easier for me to go to work with a better attitude.
  3. I give myself things to look forward to every day. One thing that keeps me going is knowing that I have things to look forward to every day. Sometimes they are solitary activities such as writing, reading, and coloring. Other times, they involve other people, such as bingo nights or movies with friends. Having things to look forward to distracts me from my cycle of negative thoughts.
  4. I talk to people who can relate to me. People who have never struggled with depression or anxiety may not understand why it is difficult to complete tasks. By talking to people who have been in my shoes and have overcome the same challenges, I find hope that I will overcome my issues as well. It helps to have an empathetic ear when I need to vent. It helps to have people who will encourage me to succeed instead of calling me lazy when things get difficult. My feelings are validated, and my strength is renewed. Most people I talk to are either close friends or people in virtual anxiety and depression support groups.
  5. I talk to my therapist. I see my therapist once every week. She helps me process my stressors from one week to the next. I am now able to see more of my triggers and thought patterns. With the help of my therapist, I have become better at changing my thoughts and responding to my triggers.

APA Reference
Lueck, M. (2023, February 13). 5 Ways to Break the Depression and Anxiety Cycle, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 24 from

Author: Martha Lueck

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