Ever been depressed for any length of time? I mean sure, we’ve all been depressed from time to time for various reasons when life hands us the proverbial bag of lemons, but what about those of us who suffer from disorders laced with depression or the actual disease of depression itself? For us depression can often be a constant. As I have evolved through my seasons of life I have constantly fought to find the positive, eliminate the negative and some days fight as hard as I possible could just to get up and greet the day, but since I moved to a new state and made a very positive life change, delved deeper into my faith and spirituality and let go of the reins of control, I have noticed that the depression I generally endure with my various disorders, has greatly subsided. True it has not fast-become a non-existent issue and, due to my genetics probably never will, but definitely much improvement.
Why then the topic at all? Well, today I was down at the bottom of the black pit again, where I so hate to be, wondering WTF??? Especially with things finally going my way. Then I noticed something, and it may be the reason a lot of people tend not to get the help they need for this disease. I think I felt that the attention I attracted when I was depressed was just that, attention that I needed. When I was depressed my friends would call to check on me to make sure I wasn’t going to do anything stupid to myself or anyone else and they knew I was fragile and lonely. I would attempt suicide but c’mon let’s face it, if I had wanted to kill myself I would be dead right now. “Attempted” suicide is one of the all time great attention seekers and cries for help there is. My ex was great at it, and in the end, finally mastered it.
Now that I have removed myself from the situations I was in that were the root of my unhappiness, i.e. the place I was living, the debt, the destructive people, etc., I now find attention in much more positive ways. This past weekend for example, I attended a local art class and met new people; I went to the casino down the hill and saw The Spinners perform live (so awesome) and I met up with my friend Trish and her boyfriend who showed me a great time as we conquered the monster Oregon dunes…such awesome thrill-seeking…I loved it:
I put this out there for those of you who are trapped in that horrible, sick pattern of staying down because it is what you are used to. I know medication isn’t always the answer because I am the first one to tell you I won’t go on any of it, but if you just find the positive things in life, little by little, day by day and moment by moment, you can kick its ass! It won’t be instant. Life is not like instant mashed potatoes where you just add water. It will take time and it will take understanding on your part…understanding of your innermost workings and getting to know yourself and how you tick. Tell yourself you don’t need to be sick to command attention in your life because you don’t. You CAN turn it around if you find the strength within your soul. Fight with the talk in your head…the voice that says things like, “I’m having a bad day,” or “I screwed that up.” You need to answer that voice back immediately with, “…You’re not having a bad day, it’s a great day but you had to deal with something that didn’t make you happy for that one particular moment. The next moment will be better,” or “No, you didn’t screw that up, it could have turned out worse but it didn’t and it isn’t anything that cannot be rectified.” That destructive, negative self-talk is learned as you grow up and/or as you age and it can be unlearned as well. Be conscious of your thoughts. Write them down if need be and read them back each day to see areas where you can turn the thoughts and opinions of yourself around. Make a list with two columns..one column titled “negative thoughts I had”…the other titled, “positive alternative thoughts,” i.e. the thoughts you could use to replace those negative ones. These exercises will get you out of your head so you can see a pattern and change it.
I hope you will try to eliminate your negatives because life is a gift and it is so short. What a waste not to dive in head first and experience all its joy. Remember, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.