Skip to main content

What's holding you back from healing

So you've been depressed for months or years... and no matter what you tried, you hover on the bottom with a few periods of somewhat better times.

There is no one answer to why YOU are stuck in the vicious cycle but chances are, it falls into one or more of the below categories.

You may have a genetic disposition to depression (I wrote about this before). Truthfully, if you have it, then depression will always be a part of your life. BUT, it is not a reason to always feel bad or give up on having a relatively peaceful mental state. However, you need to look at it as a condition like any other (like ADD, diabetes, whatever) that you can manage. So, shift your mindset from curing to managing!

You've tried therapy, medication, behavioral changes (good or damaging), mind over matter tactics, coping mechanisms, self-medication, environmental and social changes, and everything you could think of... but nothing gave permanent relief. Why? Because your efforts focused on relieving/eliminating depression rather than the state of well being. I didn't get this for a long time (more precisely, 40 years). There is a huge difference between lessening depression and increasing wellness. Consider this: 'I'll eat chocolate to subdue depression symptoms' versus 'I'll eat chocolate to increase my energy'. The act is the same but you tell yourself a completely different story. So, change the narrative from depression focus to wellness focus!

You have too many habits that feed the depression cycle. Most of us start out with coping which turn into habits in as little time as a month. The problem is that we become so comfortable with these habits that we do them unconsciously and defend them when challenged. If you ever heard yourself saying 'but it (snacking, watching YouTube, avoiding chores, etc.) helps me feel less depressed' then you have pervasive habits. Often these habits are reinforced by fear of change, maintaining comfort (enduring the known suffering is perceived less trouble than questioning it), simple unawareness of unsupportive habits, active defense of the habits, and a variety of reasoning and emotional attachment to habits. So, get real with habits and replace the outdated ones with new ones!

Spend a little time to figure out which of these factors drive your depression cycle and start changing them one step at a time. Do something every day to reinforce the change. It is a slow process but getting on the path of healing starts with one tiny act.

Love and healing to all of you!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Depression with Bidirectional Illnesses

Depression with Bidirectional Illnesses I've said this before... depression doesn't walk alone in most cases. The importance of this cannot be emphasized enough because the coexistence of conditions often lead to worsening conditions. The constant exposure/experience of the simultaneous illnesses often end up in competition for attention which feed the cycle and make things worse for both (or multiple conditions). While I cannot list all combinations in this post, I'd like to illustrate the point with some common occurrences. Depression and Insomnia It has been proven by research that insomnia is a huge risk factor for depression as well as a consequence of depression. This is not hard to understand. In layman terms, those of us who don't get enough sleep often experience lack of energy, memory problems, and a host of other symptoms that make normal functioning of body and mind difficult on a daily basis. The frustration with not being able to do all the thing

Depression SWOT Analysis

One of my special talents (no big head here just historical evidence) is translating and adopting seemingly unrelated concepts to solve problems. This is the context for sharing how I used a traditional business tool SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) to assess and plot a path out of depression. First off, using business tools for mental health is a great thing because it allows for taking the illness into a more pragmatic framework than traditional therapy approaches. Secondly, business concepts are known to many so there is an innate comfort in relating to them. Third, using a tool that is not psychological in nature may help put more emphasis on problem solving than illness identification. What I mean by this is a different viewpoint that focuses on current practices and options moving forward. So lets begin. SWOT is a staple of competitive analysis tools in business. You can read a good writeup here: https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_05.htm My adoptio

Exercise is Natural Medicine for Depression

I know what some will say... I just can't get myself moving.  If you need motivation, here is a reason why.  Exercise increases neurotransmitters, the stuff in the brain responsible for regulating physical and mental well being. Here is some research you can read. For my money, you don't have to be an athlete or exhaust yourself to get some benefit from exercise.  Start slow and small, then increase intensity as you get better.  The most important thing is to do something every day so you body develops a 'need' for moving.  I'd say you'll feel that 'need' in about 3 weeks at which point it becomes easier to get going.  Developing this healthy habit will help with your depression. Many will also say that exercise takes time which they don't have.  As my mother said, "you have time for what you make time for".  You can do something just about anywhere! If you think that exercising requires money, I'll show you how you can get in sh