Talking about Depression: Starting Somewhere

I was tweeting earlier with @WoytekNives¬†about my blogs. First, I really appreciate the feedback, second, he mentioned that he was feeling better about starting somewhere because he’d seen so many other people talking about depression. This is great. It’s fantastic that people are talking about it. That’s why I started writing about this topic. I knew I needed an outlet for it and I had hoped to help other people.

I want to talk about the steps that I’ve taken again. I started with Therapy. I know I’m really fortunate to be in a position where I can afford it. However, I didn’t take advantage of it for a really long time and that was a mistake. It had some negative consequences with my marriage because of how depressed I had gotten.

So it’s important to start somewhere. You won’t be perfect when you first start. I recommend starting with meditation. It’s tough, so I don’t recommend doing it alone. I suggest using an app like Headspace, because it’s a simple guided meditation. There are these little animated videos to help you understand the point of the exercises you’re doing. I’ll be honest, at first I just wanted to skip them. I know I’m not alone in that. They can feel a bit off putting, because you’re there waiting to get started to meditate and THEN this damn animation starts.¬†However, it can help provide an image to help you center your meditation on. Especially when you start doing the Blue Sky meditation, the animation provides great context and images to help you imagine the blue sky more clearly.

You won’t be perfect, you’ll miss days. I still miss days fairly often. However, the important thing is that you start. Because as Jake the Dog says “Sucking at something is the first step to being sorta good at something.” Going in knowing that it’s there for you when you need it and won’t judge you if you miss it, is great too.

If you’re feeling down, start with something simple. Then move on to the harder stuff. Because the simple stuff is hard. Doing something is hard. It’s hard because while you’re depressed, your time horizons collapse around you. Planning more than a few days out is tough. Thinking about a trip is overwhelming. Even when that trip is to something like, PAX, where you hope to meet up with some of your friends. It can both be the life preserver you’re wearing as you’re muddling through the days and weeks up to it. Otherwise, you’re so overwhelmed by life that you can’t see beyond getting enough food for today or tomorrow. Thinking about yesterday is hard too. You don’t want to.

So starting with something that doesn’t require you to think about tomorrow or yesterday. Just to think about how your body is moving while you’re breathing. It can be liberating. If you give something a try today, let me know. I’d love to hear what you did to start you on your journey to feeling better.