During a depression episode, I have learned it's very important to reduce stress to its bare minimum. So...I look at everything I'm doing, the people I'm spending time with, and all other aspects of my life to see what I find most stressful, and what I can eliminate.
When I was working full-time, and had two annual six-week depressive episodes, it used to take all of my energy just to go to work every day. Although I was married, that was before we had a child, so my husband and I pared back social activities on weekends so I could rest, do my chores, and we could spend times together. Even when I haven't felt particularly well, I usually enjoyed going out to dinner and a movie with my husband, or spending time browsing in bookstores, or even going to museums.
Once our son was born and I worked part-time, he became our top priority. So again, if I had a low energy level, I still was able to work three days a week, and take care of him. When he was an infant and later a young child who took naps, I would nap when he did.
My husband has always been great about marketing and cooking. My chores are laundry and cleaning--and because my husband is neater than I am, and it matters to him--I've always tried to keep the house as clean as possible. For much of our lives, we had a house keeper come in once a week. But we haven't for the last eight years or so, and actually I'm one of the few people I know who finds house cleaning relaxing.
The most difficult aspect of dealing with a depression for me is being with other people--aside from my immediate family and my mother (when she was alive). And that's what I'll write about tomorrow.