September 2015: Depression
This month’s blog is a bit tardy because I had a bit of a bout with depression this week. So I finally decided, Why not write about it?
To start with, I will talk about basic coping strategies in general. When we are so low we can’t get out of bed, one way to encourage ourselves is the “One Thing” rule. I must get out of bed to do one thing. Whether that one thing is to have a shower or eat something or even watch TV, usually we will find when we have done that one thing, we can scrounge up the energy to do one more thing. And before you know it, you have gotten through another day by tackling it one thing at a time.
Another aspect of depression that must be addressed is that pervasive feeling of powerlessness. Now there usually is something that we are powerless over—hence the depression. However, to move past that, we have to focus on what we do have power over such as personal hygiene, what we eat for dinner, what clothes we where, how we tackle the day one thing at a time.
Most of all, we must be gentle and kind to ourselves. The harsh criticisms we tend to dole out do not help us tackle the day one thing at a time nor find the details that we do have power over. We must give ourselves permission to be depressed but not to stay that way. We must counter the negative self talk with uplifting, positive statements that ring true for us.
And if after all that, you find you cannot gain any momentum, by all means find someone to talk to who can help you sort out what’s going on in your brain that keeps you trapped.
Depression is an immobilizing disease. I know.
But you can do this. You can claw your way out of the deep darkness towards the brilliant light of a brand new day. I know. I have done it. More than once.
And there may come a day for you when depression becomes no more than an irritating bug that you can flick off your shoulder and get on with your life. I know, I’m getting there.
So hang in there. Depression will not last forever. You can reclaim your life from the darkness.
Be strong. Be bold. Be Brave.