A sensitive topic : Depression and how I deal with it

I noticed people are very sensitive to this topic, especially when it comes to pieces of advice to “cure” depression, claiming that in the most severe cases, you are actually experiencing a “clinical depression”,  in which case the only treatment consists of medication or drugs.

This makes it very very difficult to debate anything about depression!

And let’s face it, everyone has it’s own definition for depression, or what they think it may mean.

For me depression would be the following:

An awful feeling inside of you, that’s ripping your heart apart to tiny little pieces, that provokes you to cry or to be totally distracted of your surroundings , feeling numb and unimpressed, that turns your stomach upside down, that stops you from enjoying anything that you liked before:  TV shows, dancing, singing, reading or eating! Even the loved ones can’t help you with anything. You have no motivation to do anything!  You also feel like exploding from all the pain.

Let’s check also the dictionary :

depression

dɪˈprɛʃ(ə)n/

noun

noun: depression

1.

feelings of severe despondency and dejection.

“self-doubt creeps in and that swiftly turns to depression”

synonyms:melancholy, misery, sadness, unhappiness, sorrow, woe, gloom, gloominess, dejection, downheartedness, despondency, dispiritedness, low spirits, heavy-heartedness, moroseness, discouragement, despair, desolation, dolefulness, moodiness, pessimism, hopelessness; More

antonyms:cheerfulness

  • PSYCHIATRY

    a mental condition characterized by feelings of severe despondency and dejection, typically also with feelings of inadequacy and guilt, often accompanied by lack of energy and disturbance of appetite and sleep.

    plural noun: depressions

    “she was referred by a psychiatrist treating her for depression”

Because I’m a human being, I experienced this feeling many, many times throughout my life and I’m pretty sure I will experience it in the future.

What I’ve learned so far is that, there is no way to stop it for good, there is no “cure” for it, because life is life and shit happens : someone dies, someone gets sick, you get sick, your lover leaves you, you loose your job, you get laughed at, and so on, so on.

What you can do, is to improve the way you respond to these types of events , because they are inevitable!

Step1: Depressed= Deep Rest.

Sometimes you just pile up all of your problems, one on top of the other, until you can’t go on any longer.

It’s time to say STOP! Enough!

Take a day or two off from work, take a long long nap, go to a massage, to a SPA treatment, cry your eyes out, meditate! Go into nature. Make a cup of tea. Relaxxxx.

Let that shit go!

Step 2: Problems?

How many problems do you have right now? One, two , ten?

Here’s a little secret : if an event has absolutely no solution to it, then it is not a problem!

Why do you consume your energy on things that are out of your control and have no solutions? Let them be, for God’s sake!

As for the ones that might have solutions, what are you waiting for? Write them down and take action or just make a plan on paper, and let it sit there for future use. It will take a lot of the pressure off.

Step 3 : Enjoy the honey

I heard recently a story from my favorite Buddhist monk Ajahm Brahn.

It goes something like this:

I man in the jungle was chased by a tiger. As he was about to get caught, he noticed a water well and jumped right into it. At the bottom of the well there was this big, black snake but he managed to grab a branch at the last minute , standing suspended in the air, just as low so the tiger won’t reach him, and as high so the snake won’t reach him.

The tiger didn’t leave and kept reaching with his pow down the well, and the snake starting lifting his head and waiting for the man to fall.

At one point two mice appeared and starting chewing at the branch, so it was just a matter of time until the man fell into the well.

The tiger, being so agitated, he trembled a tree behind him, that had a beehive, so honey started to pour into the well.

The man at that point, instead of worrying for his life, he just opened his mouth and tasted the delicious honey : “mmmm”, that’s so good”

The tiger became more agitated, and also being so greedy, he reached way to much for the man, and fell on top of the snake, killing it, and also breaking his own neck.

The man happily climbed outside of the well and went home.

So the wisdom in this story is that , whenever life attacks you from all of the places, enjoy the only thing that has remained good and pure in your life and say “mmmm, that’s so good” .

Notice the good things, and not only the bad. The future is sooo unexpected, and even when things seem impossible to resolve, a helping hand may reach out to you.

Step 4 : Release the fear

I think public enemy no. 1 in depression is FEAR.

Fear of the future, and fear of the past, which is funny cause you can’t control neither . The past is already gone and decided, and the future is unexpected, no matter what you decide!

That’s why a lot of people define fear as :

False Evidence Appearing Real.

Just think of this for a moment. How free would you be right now if you were fearless?

How many things could you conquer?

What if the future or past would not scare you at all? What if whatever happens you would be ok with it and accept it and move on?

Step 5 : Go back to your routine

If before the depression you had a routine, like going to the gym, waking up very early, eating breakfast, reading a book at night etc, go back to it right away!

A lot of our healthy habits are turned upside down when we face a depression period, and unfortunately we sometimes don’t return to them. So do that, take your time from them 1-2 days, but once you start feeling just a bit better get back on track!

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I really hope people could talk more freely about the reality of depression which is a normal part of life.

Remember: no matter what you do, the problems will not go away, and life will throw rocks at you once in a while. The only thing you can do is to change your attitude towards them, so you can receive them with more calm and with more power.

Lots of love to you all!