Self-Destructive Behaviors We All Engage In When We’re Feeling Down

Whether you just went through a bad breakup, failed a test, or lost your job, you’re probably feeling a little down and negative, and when you feel depressed, it’s easy to make bad choices and stop caring. Bad things are constantly happening all around us, but this doesn’t give us permission to self-destruct. Still, we constantly find ourselves returning to bad habits that only hurt us more and make it more difficult for us to bounce back.

  1. Not caring about how we look. No, this isn’t us being vain. It’s true what they say: if you look good, you feel good. And the opposite can also be true. So when you neglect your appearance and decide not to shower for four days, comb your hair, or change out of your pajamas, and you look like crap, you feel like crap and perpetuate your own misery. This doesn’t help with the whole positive vibes/motivation thing, and it’s just plain unhealthy.
  2. Not taking care of our bodies. Just as we neglect our looks when we’re depressed, we also tend to neglect our health. This includes staying indoors for days on end without ever getting any fresh air or sunlight, binging on junk food, or even turning to alcohol or drugs. This is self-destruction to the max because you’re literally hurting yourself. Even though we know it’s bad for us, it’s hard to resist getting into these habits because they do make us feel better, however usually only in the short-term.
  3. Blaming ourselves or others. Blaming someone is far from being productive. It actually hinders you from healing and feeling better because you’re psychologically setting yourself up to be spiteful or hold grudges. Even worse is to blame yourself though, because that just creates guilt and will continue to make you feel like you’re a horrible human being, when you’re not.
  4. Making irrational decisions.When we’re emotional, we’re usually not thinking straight. And this can lead us to making some pretty poor decisions. Whether that means you decide to tear down a wall in your house, break your diet, or sleep with your ex, be wary of spontaneity when you find yourself in a bad place.
  5. Lashing out at others. This sounds like it’s not self-destructive, but it is. When you unfairly lash out at other people who have nothing to do with the issue at hand, all you’re doing is damaging your relationship with them and looking like a childish brat. Sometimes, things just happen and no one is at fault, so nobody deserves to be screamed at or maltreated. Still, we tend to focus our aggressions on others, and later regret it.
  6. Making empty threats. Teenagers are prone to making empty threats, but as adults, we still sometimes tend to make them as well. But trust me, they’re not helping anyone or anything. Threatening to harm yourself or break something is immature when you don’t really mean it. However, if you actually do mean it, you need to get help immediately.
  7. Doing or saying something we’ll ultimately regret.Sometimes we let our emotions get the best of us, especially when we’re feeling down and depressed. In the heat of the moment, our emotions may let us say the wrong thing to the wrong person, or do something we can’t undo, and then it’s too late. That’s why you should never do something when you’re not thinking clearly. Give things time and give yourself time to think before taking action or making your next move.
Chelsey is a freelance writer in NYC. She's pretty normal by today's standards, or at least that's what her mother tells her.