Over 17 million American adults experience symptoms of a major depressive episode at least once a year, including feelings of restlessness. It's important that you seek a proper diagnosis and treatment plan for suspected depressive disorder. If you're unsure where to start, Confidant can connect you with a trusted provider to get you started on a treatment protocol as soon as possible. 

With a treatment plan and support system in place, try these tips for further reducing feelings of restlessness.

Take a Digital Detox

Researchers at Washington State University have linked social media to increased feelings of depression, loneliness, inattention, and hyperactivity. Instead of trying to use a smartphone or computer to escape your restlessness, consider taking a digital detox instead. 

Taking a vacation from technology or certain apps that take up a lot of your time can give you more to focus on yourself. 

Practice Breathing Exercises 

Center yourself anywhere at any time by practicing breathing exercises. You can practice these exercises while sitting in a supportive chair, standing up straight, or lying down—whatever is most comfortable for you. Get started for free by checking out the breathing exercises on the Confidant app. 

Learn How to Meditate

Meditation is a relaxing activity that can help settle your nerves. You can practice it at home, in the park or beach, or at another location that feels soothing to you. Plus, studies have shown that ongoing meditation can improve depression, create a more positive outlook on life, and help you maintain these benefits long-term.

If you don't know where to start, Confidant offers a library of mindfulness activities to get you started on how to meditate. You can calm both your body and your mind by incorporating meditation into your daily routine.

Practice Visualization Techniques

Visualization is a type of coping strategy that allows you to envision yourself in a calm and safe environment. By mentally picturing yourself somewhere soothing, you can improve symptoms of restlessness and make yourself feel more grounded. For example, you can relive a happy memory or picture yourself somewhere you feel secure, like in nature.

Try Progressive Muscle Relaxation

Progressive muscle relaxation combines deep breathing with the tensing and relaxing of individual muscle groups, like your neck or shoulders. You squeeze the muscles as hard as you can, taking care not to hurt yourself— you should never feel shooting pain or discomfort while completing this exercise. Tense one muscle group as you breathe in and relax it as you breathe out. You work from your toes up to your head, typically beginning one foot at a time.

If you have any broken bones or pulled muscles, consult with your doctor before beginning progressive muscle relaxation. 

Exercise for 30 Minutes 

Several studies suggest that active people are less likely to become depressed, and exercise can reduce it. Even modest levels of aerobic exercise like walking, jogging, or riding a bike, can lessen depression symptoms

When you begin to feel restless, take the time to complete a quick 30-minute workout session. Not only will exercise help release positive, "feel good" chemicals, but it will also occupy a fidgety body and mind. 

Spend Time in Nature

If you're beginning to feel restless, leave the house to spend time in nature. Even something as small as changing your surroundings and breathing in fresh, clean air can help soothe your mind. Plus, a walk through the park or going to the beach can be the perfect moment to incorporate other mindfulness techniques, like meditation or breathing exercises. 

Symptoms of feeling restless or fidgety are common in depressive disorders and are treatable. By getting started on a proven treatment protocol and incorporating mindfulness techniques into your daily lifestyle, you can begin calming your body and mind today.