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How To Deal With Depression?


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#1 Alpine

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Posted 10 February 2011 - 08:44 AM

Hello everyone, as you have read the topic. I want some suggestions on how to deal with depression.

I'm 16 years old and unfortunately I have been severely depressed since I was 13. It made huge changes in my life, my grades dropped so low that I had to repeat 6th grade, I spent two and a half years of my school life in isolation, avoiding talks with anyone besides the teacher, that was only when they asked me something otherwise I used to avoid talking with them too.
I happen to be an average student, and right now that is a problem. If I want to pursue career in environmental stream, which I want to, I have to improve a lot. At present, I get about 70% in my exams, but my marks in maths are not too good, which upsets me even more. Apart from them, I have happened to overhear my so called friends talk about what they "really" think of me.These things bug me a lot when I start studying. I'm filled with rag inside but I prefer swallowing my rage than throwing tantrum.
Though, it has been getting slightly better since past two years but the progress isn't good enough. The sites on internet are not good enough either. I can't tell this to my parents or anyone close to me, cause I'm sure they won't understand, not that I have not tried it. I have tried visiting psychologists, but I know myself way better than they do.

I'm posting this here cause I have more faith on you all than I have on all of them.The stakes at present are too high so I prefer posting here. Any sort of suggestions would do. Any personal experiences would help too. If possible, could someone tell me any way to channelize my negative energy into something positive like studying without getting distracted.

Thank you
Alpine

#2 Moontanman

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Posted 10 February 2011 - 01:01 PM

Hello everyone, as you have read the topic. I want some suggestions on how to deal with depression.

I'm 16 years old and unfortunately I have been severely depressed since I was 13. It made huge changes in my life, my grades dropped so low that I had to repeat 6th grade, I spent two and a half years of my school life in isolation, avoiding talks with anyone besides the teacher, that was only when they asked me something otherwise I used to avoid talking with them too.
I happen to be an average student, and right now that is a problem. If I want to pursue career in environmental stream, which I want to, I have to improve a lot. At present, I get about 70% in my exams, but my marks in maths are not too good, which upsets me even more. Apart from them, I have happened to overhear my so called friends talk about what they "really" think of me.These things bug me a lot when I start studying. I'm filled with rag inside but I prefer swallowing my rage than throwing tantrum.
Though, it has been getting slightly better since past two years but the progress isn't good enough. The sites on internet are not good enough either. I can't tell this to my parents or anyone close to me, cause I'm sure they won't understand, not that I have not tried it. I have tried visiting psychologists, but I know myself way better than they do.

I'm posting this here cause I have more faith on you all than I have on all of them.The stakes at present are too high so I prefer posting here. Any sort of suggestions would do. Any personal experiences would help too. If possible, could someone tell me any way to channelize my negative energy into something positive like studying without getting distracted.

Thank you
Alpine



If you are depressed then you need to see a doctor, depression can kill and it is almost impossible to deal with by your self. Now having said that I am going to have to say some things you'll probably feel are consendending, that is not the case, i am a person who remembers well the rage inside me when I was 16, (I still have some of it even now) interpersonal relationships are very difficult at that age and when others realize you are vulnerable they will do their best to exploit your feelings. For some reason adolecents seem to actually enjoy the emotional torture they meat out. That's the bad news, then you say this

I can't tell this to my parents or anyone close to me, cause I'm sure they won't understand, not that I have not tried it. I have tried visiting psychologists, but I know myself way better than they do.


This is almost certainly not true, these thought patterns are the result of your age and possibly the depression, you have to seek out help, assuming that no one can communicate or understand your problems is not true. For a psychologist to know you and understand you takes considerable time and honesty on your part.

But another bit of good news is that in a very few years you look back and think "I can't believe I actually gave a flying **** about what the people I went to school with thought of me!" You'll think back and realize that your high school years are a small fraction of your life and see it as the goofy childish interactions most of it is.

My advice to you is get counseling to make sure you do not have a physical reason for your depression but even more importantly is to improve your grades, ignore the assholes you go to school with, go to college, and see who has the last laugh. I am 56 years old, yes i was 16 once and the biggest ball of insecurities you ever saw, I can call up those memories at will and mostly they are humorous now, things that I thought were going to kill me from embarrassment to girls who seemed to own my soul, to the bullying by my school mates who thought the world revolves around who is strongest instead of who is smartest.

You will survive this, open your self up to a counselor, keep your future in your minds eye, the present at 16 whips by so fast that at 25 high school and all the assholes you had to share it with will seem like a funny weekend spend with people so stupid you will wonder at 25 if any of them survived...

I raised two sons, I helped them and most of their buddies deal with being a teen, my sons are now graduated from college and we talk quite often of how they thought the world was coming to an end when they were in high school and middle school. Life goes on, teenagers turn into adults (most do anyway) and while it sounds condescending as hell your perspective as an adult will change and you will look back and down on your problems now and at least find them to be growing experiences.
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#3 Alpine

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 01:13 AM

Thank you for your reply, I was looking for something like that to be honest. :)
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#4 writingmum

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 03:31 AM

Alpine

Best therapy in the world...go write.

Put everything that's happened to you down on paper.

If you're interested I'll recommend a great site where youngsters like you have done exactly the same thing.

Just wondering though why you're posting on here? Are you looking for a scientific cure? That won't happen.

Start now...write it up.

Wendy

#5 CraigD

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Posted 11 February 2011 - 06:16 PM

Hello everyone, as you have read the topic. I want some suggestions on how to deal with depression.

I'm 16 years old and unfortunately I have been severely depressed since I was 13.


I’m 50 years old. I remember my teens pretty vividly. Though I didn’t then consider myself, nor, I think, would a psychiatrist have diagnosed me as depressed, I remember it as a rough time, but one where I eventually got over or around every obstacle.

The roughest obstacles were, for me, times without romantic partners (I’m a heterosexual man, so these were girlfriends). I desperately wanted to never be without at least one, but often was, times during which I was often intensely unhappy, and behaved at time crazily. I was fortunate to find my mate of the past 25 years, so haven’t had that lack for a long time, but suspect that were I to lose my wife, I promptly would have that bad time again.

During those time, what seemed to lift me best and most consistently was intense exercise. Mostly I’d run, un-sensible distances (100-200 miles/week), swim, climb, lift weights, or anything else I could do to the point of ecstatic exhaustion. I’m fortunate to have inherited pretty sturdy parts (eg: knees), so survived this with no serious or long-lasting injuries.

I’m unsure if this hyper-exercise approach is psychologically sound, or will work for you, Alpine, but it’s worth considering, I think. If nothing else, exercise can make your body pretty in the eyes of most people in our culture, and being considered pretty, in my experience, can contribute strongly to relieving depression.

For the first time in my life, I was severely depressed, for most of 2010, following the death of my then 27 year old son 2009 Sep 17. After efforts to lift myself out of it failed, I visited a counselor, then a psychiatrist, and began taking 20 mg/day of a selective serotonin reuptake inhibiting drug, Citalopram (Celexa). This drug seems to have helped my get through 2010, but also caused me to experience not only a lessening of negative emotions and sensations, but of positive ones as well (such as not “feeling” music or art, and reduced intensity of orgasm). So with my psychiatrist’s approval, I gradually reduced my daily dosage, then as of late 2011 Jan, stopped taking the drug. So far, this has had the effect I hoped – the return of strong positive emotions and sensations – and the negative ones that I was treating have not returned with more intensity than I can bear.

It made huge changes in my life, my grades dropped so low that I had to repeat 6th grade
...
I happen to be an average student, and right now that is a problem. ...

I don’t think you should worry too much about this, as your grades in your last year of high school is given much greater weight by admission officers and algorithms than the grades in which your performance has decreases.

However, if you’ve not learned the prerequisite skills for classes you are in now or will be in, this is IMHO cause for great worry. If this is your case – and I suspect it is, as even people getting excellent grades often fail to acquire or retain theses skills – you should aggressively seek to remediate yourself. Talking to your teachers about specifically this – remedial education for any current deficiencies – is likely the best way for you to begin accomplish this.

I happen to be an average student, and right now that is a problem. If I want to pursue career in environmental stream, which I want to, I have to improve a lot. At present, I get about 70% in my exams, but my marks in maths are not too good, which upsets me even more.

Keep in mind that not all people who work to further environmental causes are scientists, so even if you find yourself insufficiently versed in math and science for a career in it, general literacy and organizing skills may be sufficient for you to find work that feels valuable and right to you. I don’t wish to discourage you from, or suggest that you can’t succeed in a science career, but think you’d be wise to consider careers furthering the causes you value in other ways, such as government, business and community organizing.

I spent two and a half years of my school life in isolation, avoiding talks with anyone besides the teacher, that was only when they asked me something otherwise I used to avoid talking with them too.

Not in my opinion only, if you attend a residential college, not only will you get academic instruction, but you’ll be immersed in a social environment where interactions of all kinds are greatly facilitated. In short, and in my personal experience, college is GREAT – you can meet huge numbers of people there, some of whom will likely become strong friends.

Apart from them, I have happened to overhear my so called friends talk about what they "really" think of me.

This has happened to me, and, I certain, to most people. People who bad-mouth you may truly be you best friends, and those who best sing your praises, of little importance in your life.

Though it sounds cliché, treating the people around you as you would have them treat you (following the Golden Rule), even when they don’t initially treat you the same, may make you something of an oblivious sucker, but in my experience ultimately works to your, and everybody's, best benefit.

These things bug me a lot when I start studying. I'm filled with rag inside but I prefer swallowing my rage than throwing tantrum.

If you’re feeling persistent anger that prevents you from accomplishing thing you want to and know you should do, I agree with Moontanman that the best thing for your is a therapist – a counselor, psychologist, and/or psychiatrist. Antidepressant and anti-anxiety drugs may help – this is a matter for you and a therapist to discuss and decide.

I'm posting this here cause I have more faith on you all than I have on all of them. The stakes at present are too high so I prefer posting here.

I’m deeply gratified and flattered, personally and on the behalf of hypography. We’re a small internet community, but I think a good and caring one. Please keep posting you thoughts here, and best of luck with the next hours, days, weeks and years of your life.
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#6 Alpine

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 07:27 AM

Thank you so much, for such great and deep in-sight. I appreciate it.

Keep in mind that not all people who work to further environmental causes are scientists, so even if you find yourself insufficiently versed in math and science for a career in it, general literacy and organizing skills may be sufficient for you to find work that feels valuable and right to you. I don’t wish to discourage you from, or suggest that you can’t succeed in a science career, but think you’d be wise to consider careers furthering the causes you value in other ways, such as government, business and community organizing.


Actually, environmental studies is what I'm interested in. I happen to have achieved the first rank in the environmental competition or quiz held at national level in the state. And besides that my imagination and creativity could be of great use in this field.

Apart from that I'm not comfortable with the idea of using a drug to cure depression, but exercise and writing seems a good idea. And, the reason why I did make this topic is, first of all, find people like me who have been through tough times share their experience and because of which I can get some idea of what and why I'm going through. besides that there are plenty of teenagers out there and many more people who may find this thread useful. So it's a win-win situation. :)

#7 writingmum

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Posted 12 February 2011 - 08:12 AM

Hi Alpine

You sound like a different person today. I get that. Been there...

Here's the site you could check out if you're interesting in writing your thoughts down. There are many youngsters on there whose writing is pretty deplorable, but many of them have suffered trauma and I am thankful they are ploughing their energy into the written word and using their imagination based on their experiences. It really is therapeutic. Hope you'll give it a go.

I'm writingmum on there too, but I don't use it much anymore. There are some great people on it who can relate to your suffering.


http://www.bookrix.com/

#8 athinker

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Posted 28 April 2011 - 08:30 PM

As you mentioned you have these "rages". Anger is a prime cause of depression and many other mental problems. What usually happens is that some task or unbidden will remind you of some trauma then you rage in thought to "solve" the trauma. For instance you may be doing some simple task, homework for instance. Someone in your past or present opposed you while doing some past homework and probablly did it in a traumatic way. When you are reminded of the traumatic opposition you spend energy trying to think of a way around it and have less energy to put in the current task. For some people this can be debilitating. It can be a compelling habit. There are all kinds of chemicals involved in thought especially in thought with an emotional component. It is like and addiction. An abusive person may not like anger for instance. But he may be addicted to the anger or the power abuse grants.

A way around it is to recognize the mental gymnastics you are doing in unproductive thougt and get your mind out of that thought. Get out of the habit. Some people, to avoid unplesant thoughts, use drugs. Psychiatrists prescribe drugs to do the same thing. I don't recomend drugs but depending on the severity of the problem they may be useful. You might want to try some other things first. You may have to avoid the task that reminds you of the traumatic experience. Do something that you can focus on without thinking about your raging thoughts. Don't do something like riding a bike where if you are distracted by your thoughts you go flying into traffic and get hit by a bus.

At any rate if you can minimize thinking on the trauma your brain will alter its connections and chemical "addictions" and the task that reminds you may be approched and focused on without your thoughts diverging into unproductive thought.
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#9 SciFi

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Posted 28 April 2011 - 09:21 PM

there's a good site here on it: http://chooselife.tk It's on suicide too.

#10 dduckwessel

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Posted 13 December 2011 - 02:31 AM

I think that some depression is normal but continual (occuring at roughtly the same intervals) depression is not healthy - you can't feel good about yourself when you're feeling this way. I recall many days like that and I wouldn't want to revisit it.

I don't want to minimize the problem but if it's physical in nature you might be helped with the right supplement - mercury free fish oil. Exercise is really good also (I believe CraigD already suggested it) just to get those endorphins flowing. If you find that fish oil and exercise are of no help then it may be that it's emotional in nature, in which case you may need to talk to someone that you can trust.

You may want to keep a diary (yes I know you don't feel like doing anything when you're really depressed) but this way you can see if certain situations 'trigger' the depression and if you're in a cycle of depression. It will help you be forearmed the next time it happens and you will be better able to deal with it. Sometimes too, depression can be a habit that has been occurring for so long we get used to it and assume it's 'just the way we are'. Again, I'm not minimizing the problem as I understand it well.

#11 Borealis

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Posted 27 December 2011 - 07:52 PM

I've noticed that this is an old thread, and I hope you're doing better these days. Still, I want to give you my two cents' worth. I was clinically depressed from years 11 through 22, with some manic episodes and suicidal stuff that resulted in admittance to a mental asylum. Today I study nursing and work at a mental hospital myself, and even if things aren't perfect, words can't describe how much better I feel. The point is, I've gotten out of that f-ing hellhole called depression, and don't mind sharing my experience.

First of all:

You're allowed to feel this way. No one can tell you otherwise. You might encounter people who say "I was raped once, so I'm depressed, your problems are nothing compared to mine!" Ignore those people; it's one of the meanest things you can tell someone. You're in pain, and it's not a crime.

"I know how you feel!" No, you don't. No one can know just how you feel. Accept it and move on, both of you.

Anger is natural. When humans have emotions too complex to cope with, they revert to very simple feelings, like anger. Your rage might very well be an expression of pure sorrow. There are healthy ways to unleash it; I found music and boxing to be very helpful. Other means might be general exercise, art, literature (writing is, as someone already stated, very effective!)

Watch those habits!
It's not easy for a teenager to keep a good rhythm with sleep and diet. Actually, it's not easy for anyone. But I can tell you this: don't sleep during daytime or afternoons, don't stay up late, and don't sleep too long in the morning, even if it's Sunday. Problems with sleep are one of the most common symptoms of a depression, and worsening of those problems can be downright dangerous. Pills can help, but anything stronger than melatonin is addictive, and I generally won't recommend it. Don't overdo sugars or caffeine either (yeah, Red Bull is awesome, but definitely not healthy...)

Don't isolate yourself. Seriously. I've been there, and I know it feels so much better when you're alone, but dude, you'll just be digging yourself deeper in. Force yourself out there. Just a 10-minute walk around town every evening will help. Start small, finish grand.

See if you can find a class on how to cope with depressions. My college had those, and it actually helped.

When it comes to psychologists, I'm afraid it's often a matter of chemistry, not just their skill. Try seeing someone else, or discuss this with your GP, he might have suggestions. You're young, and help for you should be plenty and free, no matter where you live. Even if shrinks don't work for you, at least you'll be able to talk to someone about your problems, which isn't half bad.

As for the distracted part...
The only way to truly focus your mental capabilities is to be at peace with yourself. Sounds like something from a cheesy 80's kung-fu-movie, I know, but it's the truth. When you get to know yourself, you'll be more comfortable with who you are and what you know and don't know, and you'll focus better. It's a long process. At the moment you should try different kinds of meditation to calm yourself and increase your focus.

Remember, if you fail a task (an exam or whatever), that's not the end of the world. I failed my studies in biochemistry, simply because I was too far down to even show up at the examinations. But as all boxers know: when the world knocks you down, you count to 8, get back up, and finish the fight, stronger than ever. Seriously. It's okay to screw up once in a while, and your close ones should be aware of that.

Speaking of, they might be scared if you tell them about these things. That's to be expected. Give them time, and I'm sure they'll support you.


That's a start, I guess. Please let us know how you're doing, and if any of this helped. And feel free to PM me if you like.

Peace out.

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#12 Aethelwulf

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Posted 20 October 2012 - 05:40 PM

Defeating depression is never easy, and most of the time, the fight should not be led be a one-self army. Some people require pills when needed, for instance.


Of course, it depends on your depression, everything is relative, down to what makes you makes you depressed to another.


Depression is like an anger you cannot quell, and often cannot comprehend. If you can comprehend what makes you depressed, you are a half-way journey to recovery.

#13 Chewbalka

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Posted 20 October 2012 - 10:45 PM

I hear ya man. I had a rough childhood, i will not compare to anyone for i have learned in life that we are not only unique to one another by personalities but also by the way we manage our lives. Sometimes something small can put one person in the deep end and with another it goes by unnoticed... The only thing i can say is depression does not last forever... Even though it seems as though it does... I can assure you with no help if you don't go in the real deep end... I assume you know what i am saying... It will always be around close by to remind you... Everyone sometimes needs a helping hand... Most of the time its not even advice that is needed... Just someone who is willing to listen! I for one did not much like talking to anyone about my issues because i did not want to hear what they thought could fix it... It always was something i had already tried... After years of rage issues as well as lack of self responsibility i realized maybe i should talk to someone... And thats what i did... The psycologist just listened... Did not tell me how to run my life, or what i should do. She just listened and that alone made me feel a little bit by bit better... Its all still there but i now know what is inappropriate in rage and not. That the whole planet does not need to feel as bad as i did... I learned to be nicer... Some here may think differently of that statement... But if i was on this site a few years ago... I would have been kicked off by day two... Everyday i have to live with what i have done to people because i refused help... Its only afterwards that i see it... Those people will never speak to me again... Even though i am better now... And they were not bad people... I was, i took small things too far too many times... Get help you don't want to see what you become if you don't... Trust me... I know this is un older post but evey little bit really does help.

#14 CopperTop

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 10:37 PM

Wow there is a lot of long to very long posts in this thread.

Everyone gets depression sometimes more than once. A good counselor is a good person to talk to. Exercise is good too, and talking to your parents. They do get concerned and may not express that with you. Shutting people out is not good. Soon will shut everyone out and feel more depressed and lonely. I have dealt with depression as well. And I have dealt with anger issues. If you are angry its best to not cause any harm to yourself or others. Later you regret what you did. I don't know exactly how true it is but a counselor told me once that if you feel depressed a banana has things in it that will help, eat one a day, among other things.

#15 belovelife

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 10:56 PM

chill here at hypography more often, ask questions and look for answers,

go to khanacademy.org

learn to play foosball
just my ideas :)

#16 CraigD

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 12:17 AM

Everyone gets depression sometimes more than once.

According to Andrew Solomon’s 2001 The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression (a long, somewhat literary, autobiographical book I found both emotionally helpful and informative, though not well sourced), there’s lots of empirical evidence and some reasonable theory suggesting that an episode of severe (AKA major) depression makes one predisposed to future episodes. It appears likely that it causes permanent or at least semi-permanent changes in your brain.

Moreover, the more severe the depression, the more likely one is to have a future episode, and the more severe it’s likely to be.

A key point here is that it’s good to notice and treat a person’s first episode of major depression as early and as well as possible, as doing so reduces the likelihood of future depressions. First episodes tend to be less easy to recognize, though, so it’s good even for people who haven’t had a major depression to know a lot about the condition, so they can recognize it if occurs.

This happened with me. Having lived nearly 50 years without suffering from depression, I had the impression I was, through some trait of my personality or neurophysiology, immune. I wasn’t. Fortunately, I had lots of personal and professional help available, and didn’t feel much if any stigma around accepting it.

I don't know exactly how true it is but a counselor told me once that if you feel depressed a banana has things in it that will help, eat one a day, among other things.

I think this is a myth, largely internet-propogated. Here is an article explaining why, and claiming the myth was spread “by a viral email forward”. Here is an example of a webpage spreading the myth.

The idea behind the myth is that bananas are a good source of tryptophan, a nutrient needed for the body to synthesize serotonin, a neurochemical important to both good mental and digestive health. The problem with the idea is that banana’s aren’t an especially good source of tryptophan – per gram, they have about half as much as potatoes or oats, about 1/50th as much as soybeans, and about 1/100th as much as egg whites.

In their defense, bananas are tasty and fun to eat. Eating tasty foods and having fun are both, in my experience, good for relieving depression. They’re a good source of the electrolyte potassium, which helps one prevent and recover from muscle fatigue and pain, which is also good for relieving depression.

#17 Snax

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 07:02 PM

There are a bunch of other things besides eating healthy, vocalizing your problems, and exercising that you can do too, like nuerofeedback, Ginkgo-Biloba, and some nootropics. I'm not trying to sell anything, but I am trying to show that there are things you can take on top of your normal diet to help boost your brain power and promote well-being.

I know you don't want mind-altering pills (and really, that's what most anti-depressants are), but there is a natural form of happiness booster you can get - New Mood (serotonin precursors). All it is, is naturally occurring vitamins that are directly linked to the production of the neurotransmitter serotonin. It has 5-HTP which is the building block for serotonin, and it has L-tryptophan which is used by your body to synthesize 5-HTP, so it's almost like a timed release of slightly elevated serotonin levels.

As far as your studying issues go, I've suffered severe troubles with that as well because up until college, school sucked hardcore. It was hard for me to get into studying and research (for my own edification) because I hated school and have so many interests out side of schoolwork, but I started using Ginkgo-Biloba and haven't stopped ever since. I don't even have to study at all anymore to be honest, I can just (almost perfectly) remember everything that was said during lectures.

If you don't trust these cognition enhancers, you can research them more yourself, or if you can't afford them, their formulas are all put online (like on onnit's site) so you can make your own for free. The people that make these things aren't out to get you, most of these companies just want to help people (as opposed to big-pharmas that make anti-depressants). I haven't heard of a single negative side-affect from these things and they work wonders on mood, memory, and overall cognition. So it's at least something to look into if not for your own use.

I know I had severe issues to studying that were linked to my ADD, which I got neurofeedback for and cured my ADD. You can try nuerofeedback as well as treatment for depression if you aren't interested in ingesting any extra chemicals. Neurofeedback is probably the most direct way to analyze your brain in real-time and gives great insight into what's going on with yourself.

There is another extremely powerful cure I forgot to mention that works on much deeper and much more intimate levels than everything I have ever used or heard of, and it's transcendence (or deep meditation). If you've tried this and couldn't make it work, there is another way to submerge your conscious mind into your subconscious (which is what I had to do since meditation doesn't work for me), and that is prescience. A prescient state of consciousness is by definition the same as when you hit transcendence, but you go about it in a much different way. The way I trigger it is by becoming ultra-introspective (like the introversion in meditation, but in a public or wide-eye environment) and thinking about what exactly is making you feel whatever you're feeling. If you do this late at night right before you're about to fall asleep it can also trigger lucid dreams. There's all kinds of stuff you can do once you get into that mind-state. It's effectively the same as taking a strong psychedelic like magic mushrooms.

So anyways, there's all kinds of stuff you can do on top of nutrition and exercise. I recommend doing a combination of stuff, I mean living a healthier life in general makes you feel better on the physical level guaranteed. I hope this helped a little, peace man.