Feature Image by Samantha Gades

When you’re feeling down, your first impulse may be to crawl under your covers and hide from the world. While this can sometimes work for a short period of time, you will eventually need to face your emotions head-on to feel better.

Below, we’re sharing five expert-recommended ways to deal with being sad.

Take time to be sad
While you may feel pressure to get back to work or school, mindset coach Heather Gray recommends putting time aside to process your feelings, even if that means taking a mental health day. “Make room for your sadness or stressor by scheduling time [for] yourself to nap, go for a walk, journal, check in with a friend, or read a book,” she says. “Don’t work your sadness around your life or push it down or away.”

Get moving
“Our feelings are just energy inside of us, and we have some control over how we use that energy,” says Gray. Choosing to go for a walk, take a yoga class, or do other exercises can be tremendously helpful when coping with sadness as it gets those feel-good hormones flowing.

Change what you can
If there’s something specific making you sad, identify what about the situation you can control to help you get past the sadness, suggests psychotherapist Arlene B. Englander. “Have you experienced disappointment in life or at work? Think about what happened and what you can learn from it for next time. Have you heard bad news? Ask yourself if there is any cause for hope or what you can do to make more of the situation,” she says. Perhaps it’s not as dire as it may seem. Being a friend to yourself is especially important at this time.”

Ask for help
Clinical social worker Jennifer M. Simpson recommends talking to a friend or family member for support. Additionally, chronic sadness can be a sign of depression. If it lasts more than two weeks, it may be a good idea to seek professional help.

xx, The FabFitFun Team