5.2.10

Depressed Much?


Helplessness 
Sadness               
 Despair                               
Loss of Hope    
Emptiness
                                     
Sound familiar?  

Depression is a sensitive subject.  Feeling depressed, or worse, having a professional tell you you are depressed can result in a more helpless role.  One can be consumed by this force outside of themselves, an omni-present doom and gloom now has control of your life.  Winston Churchill called his depression his "black dog". 

(anti) Anti-depressants



Do you know how "anti-depressants" were discovered?  In the 1950's when doctor's noticed TB patients had substantial periods of elevated moods when taking the drug imipramine.  It continues to be a mystery as to how anti-depressants really work which is why an individual can go through several different ones before finding one that really works.  Sometimes the wrong medication can have the opposite effect and make a person feel even worse.  Not to mention all of the terrible side effects like making a person feel like they need a crutch and cannot make it on their own.




Interesting stats

First reported depressive episode is highest in females ages 20 and 29 and for men the similar risk is ages 40-49

Married women ages 25 to 45 have a higher rate of depression than unmarried women in this age bracket.


Those born between 1966-1975 are shown to have a greater chance of experiencing depression than those born 1936-1965.  

Could this be due to the rise of technology?


Options

Stop trying to fight it.  Why not go with it?  See what it's trying to tell you.  Imagining how horrible it is every day keeps you dwelling on it and keeps it in the forefront of your mind.  Why not let it go and listen?  

Become action oriented.  Create a plan to tackle your mood and do your best to follow through with it.  Some ideas for  some goals are meeting with a therapist, starting an exercise regime or dragging yourself outside to sit in the sun for 20 minutes.  

Stop ruminating.  When we ruminate, we prolong our depression by constantly reminding ourselves we are depressed and wondering why we are depressed and why we can't fix it which, subsequently, makes us more depressed.


Realize you really aren't special.  When I worked with addicts it amazed me how many of them thought their situation was unique.  It may be unique to you, but others have experienced similar things.  No story you can tell can be as strikingly different than another persons.  We have all experienced loss, divorce, abuse, anxiety, stress and breakups in some form or another.  We are way more connected than we choose to believe.  The point is, others have been there done that.  Get out of your bubble.


Meditation and mindfulness.  Try it.  Health experts don't constantly shove it down our throats for no reason.  Breathing well lowers blood pressure and heart rate.  Staying in the present is something AA forerunners new was helpful and AA was basically founded on the phrase "Day by day".  If you imagine yourself having a depressed mood the rest of the week, month, or year you are going to become more depressed.  Take it day by day.


Add a but.   Here's what not to keep saying:  I am depressed.  This sucks.  I don't want to get out of bed.  I only want to sleep.  I am always going to feel this way.  Why not wake up and say something like "I may feel sad today BUT I am still going to get something accomplished.  Why not wake up and say something like "I have felt sad lately BUT I feel happier today". 

Talk.  Talk to friends about what's going on.  Talk to  a counselor.  Talk to someone you trust.  Chances are they've been in the same place. 

Give your depression a name. Remind yourself it's "_______" that's come to visit.  This will help you separate yourself from depression.  It's situational.  It isn't your entire life.

Oh, and one more thing...

Your'e depression can be caused by where you live.  Yes, where you live.  Most people know seasons can affect mood but have you really thought about it?  It has to do with light.  This can be especially significant for you if you are an HSP or highly sensitive person.  If you can't get outside because it's freezing, create an alternate light source for yourself while indoors.  Turn on the lights!  I make it a point to expose myself to as much light as possible during the winter months.  And yes my friends, it can even happen in sunny Florida.  Do you know how often it rains here in the winter months?  I encourage you to take a stroll down city-data lane where there you will find annual precipitation charts for any city you can think of.  It also compares it to the U.S. average.


Compare your city with others and compare it to your general mood.  I bet you will find a correlation.
I did.

5 comments:

  1. In my mid-20's I battled with a major depressive disorder that lasted for several years. When I look back on it I can see several things that I could've done differently such as learn more through therapy and not just relying on my primary care physician to diagnose and treat (tx) me. Now that I know way more about tx options and how my thoughts and actions didn't help at ALL I was able to gain a lot of knowledge as to what works and what doesn't. There's always an exception of course. Now when depression rears its ugly head in my life, and those around me, I view it differently.

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  2. I really enjoyed your post and have directed people there. I have never been diagnosed with depression. I asked about it when my marriage fell apart, but my primary care said I was not depressed. However, there have been times when I've been blue and I do not fight it. However, I do take those down times to do things I might not normally do. For example, I can't work and feel as though there is an anvil on my head so I don't try to work. Instead, I once learned to juggle. I only had to get off the couch for minutes to practice. I also learned to play guitar (as far as you can call it guitar playing) while in one of these moods. By the way, my guitar is in bed with me right now and is begging me to play.

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  3. While my guitar gently weeps...

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  4. That is so true. I find when my sleep schedule is off, EVERYTHING is off. I try to force myself to get up. I make a to-do list and attempt to get as much of it done throughout the day. It makes me feel better, it distracts me, and also opening all the blinds and letting the light in helps.

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